LANSING, Mich. – Chrysler Group LLC, Ford Motor Company, General Motors and 43 of their Tier 1 partners joined forces with Pure Michigan Business Connect to host the first Detroit Three supplier summit at Cobo Center in Detroit. The invitation-only event brought more than 400 Michigan suppliers together to connect with buying teams from the Detroit Three and their partners in an effort to spur economic and job growth in the state.
“This unprecedented event, the largest Pure Michigan Business Connect summit to date, brings significant growth opportunities for Michigan companies and more jobs for Michigan residents,” said Gov. Rick Snyder. “Through the collective vision and leadership of Chrysler, Ford, GM and their Tier 1 partners we are reengineering how business gets done in Michigan. Their commitment to working with Michigan suppliers and growing our economy adds new force to Michigan’s comeback.”
Hosted by Pure Michigan Business Connect, a Michigan Economic Development Corporation program, and the Detroit Regional Chamber, today’s invitation-only summit gave Michigan companies procurement opportunities with the Detroit Three automakers and 43 of their Tier 1 suppliers. The participating buying teams have provided more than 400 procurement needs for which they are committed to finding and working with qualified Michigan suppliers. Businesses from around the state applied and were invited to attend pre-arranged, exclusive purchaser-supplier matchmaking engagements at the summit. In one day, 795 unique prescheduled meetings will take place between global buying teams and Michigan businesses.
Gov. Snyder presented the keynote address at the summit. The event opened with a panel discussion that included Scott Kunselman, senior vice president – Purchasing and Supplier Quality, Chrysler Group; Hau Thai-Tang, group vice president – Global Purchasing, Ford Motor Company; and Grace Lieblein, vice president – Global Purchasing and Supply Chain, General Motors. The panel was moderated by Julie Fream, president and CEO, Original Equipment Suppliers Association. Nigel Francis, MEDC automotive office senior vice president and state of Michigan auto adviser, provided remarks following the panel discussion.
All three automakers currently make significant purchases from Michigan vendors. In 2013, Chrysler purchased $12.3 billion in materials and services from Michigan-based companies, Ford spent approximately $17.3 billion, and GM’s direct material spend was approximately $21.6 billion.
The Pure Michigan Business Connect supplier summits are exclusive purchaser-supplier matchmaking engagements that provide procurement opportunities to Michigan vendors. The Michigan Economic Development Corporation and the Detroit Regional Chamber merged the Chamber’s Connection Point events with Pure Michigan Business Connect in January 2013, and have since conducted supplier matchmaking summits with more than 100 other purchasers across multiple industries. These summits have helped contribute to more than $1.85 billion in revenue for Michigan companies, translating into approximately 9,250 jobs created across the state.
In March 2013, Pure Michigan Business Connect hosted a similar invitation-only matchmaking summit with Ford and 30 of its Tier-1 partners that had more than 600 prescheduled meetings take place between buyers and Michigan businesses. From those meetings, $11.2 million in contracts have been generated to date.
In 2013, Chrysler Group hosted a matchmaking event with Pure Michigan Business Connect and the company’s large Tier 1 suppliers that resulted in more than 140 procurement leads and 300 meetings between Michigan businesses and potential customers. A key result from the event was the award of an innovation grant to support the development of a project focused on the challenging upcoming fuel economy and emissions regulations. Since 1999, Chrysler Group has held an annual Matchmaker event for diverse suppliers that has resulted in more than $2 billion in business awarded to certified minority, women and veteran-owned businesses.
“This matchmaking summit gives Michigan companies opportunities with the Detroit automakers and their key suppliers that they might not otherwise have,” said MEDC President and CEO Michael A. Finney. “We encourage all of Michigan’s business community, companies that have supply needs and those that are looking for new opportunities, to join Pure Michigan Business Connect.”
Launched in 2011, Pure Michigan Business Connect is a public-private alliance of the MEDC, state agencies and major Michigan companies and organizations that connects in-state companies to business resources. Companies can find new ways to raise capital, get access to professional business services at little or no cost, connect with each other through a new business-to-business network, and identify potential supplier opportunities, while developing resources to improve their supply chains.