Recent News at Hercules Manufacturing
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December is "Made in America" Month
The tradition dates back to Ronald Reagan's proclamation in 1985.
Wed, 2012-12-05 09:48
Julie Reiser, president, Made in USA Certified
A recent study by the National Retail Federation revealed that the average American will spend $700 in holiday purchases this year for a total of $465 billion. If that money was spent entirely on U.S.-made products it would create 4.6 million jobs.
Under President Ronald Reagan the United States, for the first time, saw on a large scale how a massive supply of imports could literally decimate and threaten the existence of an entire industry.
I am referring to the auto market when the U.S. was flooded with Japanese cars.
Early on in Reagan's campaign he spoke about the U.S. auto industry saying: "Japan is part of the problem. This is where government can be legitimately involved. That is, to convince the Japanese in one way or another that, in their own interests, that deluge of cars must be slowed while our industry gets back on its feet..."
Top U.S auto executives urged President Ronald Reagan to establish import quotas on Japanese cars. These American automakers were concerned that Japanese automobiles were permanently drawing consumers away from U.S. made vehicles. At that time, the Reagan administration was successful in convincing the Japanese government to temporarily halt auto exports to the U.S. in 1981. It was a very controversial move on the part of the Reagan administration.
As President, Ronald Reagan did a lot to try to "level the playing field." An often cited example of the benefits of voluntary export restraints is the one that emerged on Ronald Reagan's watch between the Japanese and the United States in the 1980's.
Another example is when Reagan imposed a 100% tariff on selected Japanese electronic products for allegedly "dumping" computer memory chips; he said he did it "to enforce the principles of free and fair trade." And Treasury Secretary James A. Baker stated that: Reagan "has granted more import relief to U.S. industry than any of his predecessors in more than half a century."
For these and other reasons on Dec. 23, 1985 President Reagan
issued the following proclaimation:
America's current trade problems have caused some to wonder whether this country may not be in danger of losing its reputation as a supplier of high quality products at competitive prices. As America's strong economic growth has led to increased demand for goods and services, imports have become more attractive because of the relative strength of the dollar. U.S. exports have become less attractive to foreign buyers for the same reason. Recently, however, increased growth in the economies of our trading partners and movement of the dollar toward a more sustainable equilibrium give us reason to expect that our trade deficit should ease in the near future. Tough foreign competition, in the last few years, has presented our manufacturers and our work force with a stiff challenge.
But America's producers are responding to that challenge, and it is time for consumers both here and abroad to take a fresh look at what America has to offer. Those who do will find the traditional variety, high quality, and dependability that ``Made in the U.S.A." has come to symbolize. They also will find this quality at more competitive prices.
Made in America Month also provides an opportunity for American firms and workers to resolve to take greater advantage of new competitive opportunities both here at home and in overseas markets. We Americans do not shrink from competition; we believe in competition -- fair competition. Historically, competition constantly creates pressure for innovation, product improvement, and customer satisfaction. The open marketplace makes the consumer the king, and we are all consumers.
In an increasingly competitive world, we Americans must redouble our efforts to make products of the highest quality in the most efficient way and market them aggressively. As we do I have no doubt that more and more Americans and foreigners will be drawn to the products with the proud label: ``Made in America."
The Congress of the United States, by Senate Joint Resolution 206, has authorized and requested the President to proclaim December 1985 as "Made in America Month" and authorized and requested the President to issue a proclamation in observance of this event.
Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim December 1985 as Made in America Month. I invite the people of the United States to observe this month with appropriate programs and activities to recognize and celebrate the excellence of American products.
Relevance in 2012
There are obvious similarities of a lot of the wordage to our current situation today in 2012. This proclamation could have been written almost exactly today, by our 44th President of the United States, President Barack Obama.
When countries like China, manipulate their currency, flood our markets with cheap underpriced goods using cheap labor and following no environmental regulations -- the playing field is not level, the United States can not compete "fairly."
How can we counter the situation with China? We can do today what Ronald Reagan implored us to do years ago. He wanted to encourage citizens, officials and manufacturers to partake in activities and programs "recognizing and celebrating American products."
A recent study by the National Retail Federation revealed that the average American will spend $700 in holiday purchases this year for a total of $465 billion. If that money was spent entirely on U.S.- made products it would create 4.6 million jobs.
But it doesn't even have to be that big. If each of us spent just $64 on American made goods during our holiday shopping, the result would be 200,000 new jobs."
Julie Reiser is the president & co-founder of Made in USA Certified.
Rick Carter has joined the Hercules sales team. Carter, a long-time resident of Henderson, KY will serve in the inside sales department.
Rick has many years sales experience in the overhead roll-up door business, dock equipment, and the lumber business, most recently with Architectural Sales. He was also sales manager for several years at Crawford Door. Carter has worked in sales for most of his career primarily in industrial products and/or construction and building products.
Jeffrey Caddick, CEO/Owner of Hercules Manufacturing in Henderson, Kentucky is pleased to announce that effective October 1st, 2012 Rob Porter will be joining Hercules as the Northeast Regional sales manager. Porter will continue to reside in the Syracuse, NY area.
For the past 1 1/2 years Porter has been working as an Independent Salesperson marketing Hercules insulated and dry freight truck bodies in the Northeast. He previously worked as a purchasing agent for Grumman Aerospace, Pelco & Mac Law Tool & Die.
Hercules was featured in a recent article on What's New in Refrigeration in Fleet Owner Magazine
In addition to refrigeration units, cold-plate technology is another popular option for fleets. Hercules Manufacturing Co. says it is seeing an increase in requests for 5- and 6-in. foam all around the truck body, which is said to promote better temperature control and extended body life.
“The primary purpose of a refrigerated truck body is to provide good temp control. Some customers run longer routes with more stops; some carry more products, meaning drivers spend longer at each stop delivering multiple product lines,” says Jeffrey A. Caddick, CEO and owner of Hercules.
“We’ve devised foaming above the crossbars for maximum temp control, keeping floor height as low as possible, making it easier for drivers to get in and out.”
Hercules’ cold-plate system is a derivative of a system originally developed by the company in the 1930s.
“[Cold-plate refrigeration systems] are known for lower up-front maintenance [and] operation costs, eliminating refrigeration system diesel consumption, and project that coveted ‘green’ image,” says Caddick.
Predicting 2012: ERP Powers the Mobile, Real-Time Enterprise
Written By Louis Columbus, Cincom Systems
A good friend of mine recently became CIO of a financial services
firm and was given his first major system challenge this month: make
the complete accounting, financial and third-party loan provider data
and applications available 24/7 on any iPad or Android-based tablet.
He’s been given six months to make this happen.
Another CIO of a major A&D manufacturer I know wants vendors to
challenge him more to get greater value from his investments with
them. He’s also been given the task of revamping accounting and
financial systems by October 2012, and they just started last year.
He tells me the days of using ERP to just passively run reports are
Considering these two extremes—the young CIO who is just starting out
and has been given the challenge of bringing state-of-the-art
financial applications to mobile platforms, and the seasoned CIO who
must revamp an entire accounting and financial management system in
ten months—a series of predictions for 2012 emerge. Instead of
playing it safe, I’ve decided to reach on these to make them more
interesting, fun and hopefully thought-provoking as well:
Streamlined, intuitive usability of social networks will lead to ERP
getting an extreme makeover in 2012 in an effort to drive up system
adoption. While strides are being made in this area today, there is
still a long way to go until the usability of ERP application suites
approaches those of the most popular SaaS-based CRM, supply chain
systems and social networks. For CIOs, this is a big win since they
can satisfy the wants of many internal departments and customers with
a graphical interface upgrade without having to completely replace
systems. Look for this to be a major focus area of all ERP vendors in
2012 and a strategy for keeping long-standing systems in place and
safely under maintenance for at least a few more years if not more.
Rapid implementations become the new normal. The pressure on the new
CIO of a financial services company to deliver a new series of Apple
iPad and Android-compatible integrations within six months or less
and the pressure to make an entirely new accounting and finance
system work in an A&D firm by October 2012 are glimpses into the new
normal. Accuracy, speed and quickness with perfect implementations
are what the new expectations are based on. ERP implementation
timeframes will drastically shrink in 2012, with greater pressure on
system integrators and professional services to meet or beat
ERP mobility will be a dominant force from the shop floor to each
sales call where quotes, orders and contracts deliver real-time order
and pricing updates. How a given manufacturer chooses to sell is even
more important than what they sell in many industries. Equipping
manufacturing, quality assurance, production scheduling, procurement
and sales to have immediate data on what’s going on with orders,
customers and suppliers is critical. For the sales and service teams,
real-time data is the fuel they run on. There’s a chronic time
shortage in many, many companies right now, and bringing greater ERP
mobility from the shop floor to the sales call will increasingly be
seen as a means to lessen the time crunch. 2012 is the year where
mobility gets real across the enterprise with solid performance
numbers being generated as a result. For companies with large sales
forces and service organizations, integrating to key ERP systems to
gain real-time data will quickly lead to increased sales and higher
gross margins on service and warranty repairs.Depth and quality of
applications, data and legacy integration on mobile devices including
tablets will emerge as the new enterprise bling. The iPad is a badge
of analytical and executive honor in the financial services industry—
the technological equivalent of the corner office with the million-
dollar view and mahogany furniture. My good friend who just became a
CIO was unsure of just who was a VP or C-level executive during his
first staff meeting. He quickly realized the more worn the iPad and
case, the more senior the executive. The expectations on him are very
high for having real-time updates on a series of benchmarks that the
senior management team uses to manage their many businesses on mobile
platforms by June.
Cloud-based ERP in the enterprise and highly targeted verticals will
flourish and face moderate growth in small and medium businesses
(SMBs). Convincing as the arguments are for SMBs to adopt SaaS-based
ERP, this will continue to be slower in adoption than enterprises and
highly targeted vertical markets. Enterprises will continue to adopt
SaaS-based applications to replace legacy, high-maintenance and often
marginally effective systems in use today.
Analytics and Business Intelligence (BI) will become the fuel that
drives cultural change away from siloed decisions to more
collaborative ones. Given how tight the time schedules are for every
IT department I’ve visited and know of, the luxury of allowing one
set of dashboards and metrics to just measure a single process or
silo are gone (or will be in 2012 completely). Little tolerance or
patience on the part of CIOs is now commonplace when it comes to
esoteric, single-centered dashboards and metrics. The good news is
that dashboards are extremely easy to create now, especially on top
of Microsoft-based analytics and databases. That’s also part of the
bad news too. Dashboards are proliferating and are often used to
define a given department’s agenda without focusing on shared
outcomes. In 2012, this will change as dashboards and metrics that
measure collaboration become required for continued investment.
Template-driven implementations will become more commonplace in the
mid-market. For many enterprises in the mid-tier of the market,
there’s going to be much more of a focus on getting up and running
quickly and less on tailoring every possible customization option in
an ERP module or entirely new system. Template-driven implementations
will also become commonplace in cloud-based ERP systems and solution
packages sold to vertical market industries. The good news is that
implementation timeframes will drop. The bad news is that not so much
customization means potentially inflexible systems. Common areas
where this strategy will be used are project management and
scheduling, business performance management, contract lifecycle
management, product lifecycle management, program management, project-
based supply chain management and service lifecycle management. These
templates will be especially useful in industries where compliance is
critical to passing government audits, for example in the
Value-based measurements of ERP will become more commonplace. Given
how much pressure there is on CIOs to show how investments in IT are
paying off, value-based measurements will become even more
commonplace in 2012 than they are today. The challenge of isolating
just which aspect of an enterprise system delivered cost reductions
or revenue gains is an area of ongoing debate in many companies.
These value-based measurements provide a structure for determining
just how much of a contribution ERP investments are making or not.
Highly specialized ERP platforms will accelerate system adoption and
value and will transform manufacturers in the process. Look for
Microsoft, Oracle, SAP and others to create world-class alliances and
partnerships that are focused on creating highly specialized ERP
platforms that will disrupt the existing enterprise software product
development, selling and service models.
Bottom line: More collaborative use of analytics, adoption of mobile
ERP applications primarily in sales and service and shortened
implementation timeframes all show just how time-constrained
enterprises are right now. Enterprises are in search of systems that
will help alleviate the time shortages that nearly every one of them
is facing today.
For information about Cincom Systems ERP solutions, visit
Louis Columbus has nearly 20 years of experience in the IT industry,
specializing in market and industry analysis, sales, product
management and development. He’s held senior positions at Toshiba
America, Lockheed-Martin, Intergraph and immediately before joining
Cincom, as senior analyst at AMR Research. Mr. Columbus is a frequent
contributor to industry publications and has published 15 books on
operating systems, peripherals and industry analysis. In addition,
Mr. Columbus is a frequent lecturer in Webster Loyola-Marymount
University’s graduate program on International Business. You can
reach Louis at firstname.lastname@example.org
DAVID COKER: Employees are customers, too
In my last column, the lead decried how Sears Holdings had recently
announced that the company will shutter more than 100 stores across
the country as the result of poor sales and earnings during the
Christmas holiday buying season.
In thinking about this, and reviewing the manufacturing history of
Evansville, it occurs to me that perhaps Sears should take a look at
an early page out of the history of the company if it is indeed
serious about returning the firm to its once prominent position in
the world of domestic retail sales.
The year was 1903. Early in the year, William McCurdy, a middle-aged
businessman who had made a name for himself in real estate and
insurance in Kansas City, Mo. had been operating the Brighton Buggy
Works in Cincinnati since 1890. Previously familiar with Evansville
as a river port and the largest hardwood market in the entire
country, McCurdy had been buying lumber locally to produce buggies up
river and paying the enormous freight charges of transporting the
lumber to Cincinnati.
His largest customer at the time was none other than the most
aggressive mail-order retail firm in the country, Sears & Roebuck and
Company of Chicago. Sears was being operated by Julius Rosenwald, a
personal friend of McCurdy's. Under Rosenwald's tutelage, Sears &
Roebuck had grown from sales of some $750,000 in 1889 to over $50
million in 1907.
Familiar with the situation and the growing reputation of Evansville
as the lumber and furniture mecca of the Midwest, Rosenwald made
McCurdy a proposition he simply could not refuse. He proposed to loan
McCurdy some $75,000 to build a new factory building in Evansville on
North Morton Street near the Southern Railway tracks. A new 32,000-
square-foot brick structure was built and with McCurdy bringing some
40 of his top wheelwrights, body men and metal craftsmen with him
from Cincinnati, the Hercules Buggy Company was born.
The company was an overnight sensation, selling its well-constructed
horse-drawn buggies, surries, wagons and sleighs for going in snow
through the Sears & Roebuck catalog.
A passage from a history of Evansville and Vanderburgh County from
1910 by local historian Frank Gilbert sheds some light on the subject:
"The Hercules Buggy Company, soon to be the largest buggy factory in
the world, has more business than its present plant can handle and is
contemplating a large addition." Quoting McCurdy personally, Gilbert
says: "Our sales show an increase of from 25 to 30 percent over the
largest year we have ever had. During April and May, we were
compelled to take all of our salesmen off the road as we simply could
not take care of the large demand for Hercules buggies."
Considering investment additions to both the wheelwright shop and the
body plant within the company, McCurdy continued: "For the past four
months, my factory has been building and shipping from 210 to 225
finished vehicles per day, and at this time we have orders in the
house sufficient to keep us going to full capacity until Sept. 1."
The majority of these vehicles were being sold through the Sears &
A few years later in 1912, William Triplett, the main buyer of
buggies and agricultural gasoline engines, approached McCurdy with
yet another proposition. Sears & Roebuck had been purchasing
stationary engines from a wholly-owned subsidiary, the Holm Machine
and Manufacturing Co. in Sparta, Mich., but the company could not
keep up with the soaring demand. Triplett offered to help finance a
new factory to make the stationary engines next to the buggy factory.
The first engines began rolling off the assembly line in early 1914.
>From then until sometime in 1934 when the company ceased production,
Hercules build more than 400,000 engines under various names, but the
majority of them were sold through the Sears catalog.
While no historic record of the number of employees working in these
two factories remains, old catalogs of the buggy works seem to
indicate employees in the hundreds. There is no doubt that many of
them were well aware that the fruits of their labor were sold through
Sears and, hence, were encouraged to place orders for household
goods, clothing and personal items themselves from the mail-order
Were these men visionaries or were they simply products of their
times? It remains a subject of conjecture. But both Rosenwald,
Triplett and later Henry Ford knew beyond a shadow of doubt that
working employees earning living wages become customers, and that
translates into increased sales.
Retailers in this country seem to have forgotten this, and their
recent actions of off-shoring production of everything they sell have
been killing the geese that laid the golden eggs for a vast
percentage of the American work force.
Al Miller has joined Hercules Manufacturing in the Northeast Sales Division covering Connecticut, Delaware, Massachusetts, Maine, Maryland, New Hampshire, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont.
Miller's experience includes over 25 years experience representing OEMs in the truck equipment industry as Owner of Equipment Sales Group, LLC, Regional VP of Sales Mac
Gray, National Sales Manager Johnson Truck Bodies, Northeast Director of Sales and Director of Distributor Development Morgan Corp.
Al earned his BA from St. John Fisher College and has completed numerous seminars and advanced training in the trucking industry.
James Cox Sr. has joined Hercules Manufacturing, Inc., Henderson, KY as an in house parts sales associate. He will be in charge of customer service and assistance with OEM parts and replacements.
Cox was previously Plant Manager of Tri State Fire Protection in Evansville, Indiana.
Rob Porter has joined Hercules Manufacturing in the Northeast Sales Division covering Connecticut, Delaware, Massachusetts, Maine, Maryland, New Hampshire, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont.
Porter has a solid background in Purchasing, Logistics and Transportation. He has an A.A.S. in Business Administration
Mike McDonough has joined Hercules Manufacturing, Inc., Henderson, KY as an in house sales associate. He brings 12 years solid sales experience to his position.
Mike was previously a member of the President's Club at Huntington Mortgage. He earned a B.S. Degree in Accounting from the University of Southern Indiana (USI) where he attended on an Academic and Athletic Scholarship.
|Hercules Mfg Co., a national manufacturer of custom built truck bodies headquartered in Henderson, KY has announced the impending retirement of its President, Joe Banna, at the conclusion of 2009. Banna will be honored for his 40 years of service by being named President Emeritus of the company.|
"I, along with my family, would like to take this opportunity to express our sincere appreciation of Joe's service and dedication to Hercules over the past 40 years. The longevity of his valued service testifies both to the character of this man and the integrity of our company," stated Jeffrey Caddick, CEO/Owner of Hercules.
Caddick went on to add, "I consider it important for our company, by elevating Joe to this position, to not only honor him for his service and dedication to our company, but also provide an opportunity for the company to have continued access to his knowledge and wisdom".
Hercules Mfg. Co., founded in 1902 and located in Henderson, KY since 1957, is a manufacturer of custom built truck bodies and trailers for the transportation industry.