Mexico provides competitive edge for
Minco Manufacturing

Case Study - The Offshore Group

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In 2005, Ronald Eisele, President of Minco Manufacturing, needed an edge. Office automation products from China were creating a production price barrier that Minco could not overcome with domestic labor. Something had to change. Minco needed to move, but where?

Today, Minco is a precision machining company supplying both the Aerospace and Office Automation industries. The company also provides application of specialty coatings like Teflon® and silicone rubber, as well as offering mechanical assembly support of its customers. But in 2005, it needed access to a manufacturing solution that could sharpen its competitive edge.

Minco Manufacturing Logo

Eisele did what any responsible executive would do. He started digging for solutions, working his personal and professional networks for recommendations. It was then that Hydro Aluminum, one of Minco's major suppliers, introduced Eisele to The Offshore Group and the solution Minco needed.

The Offshore Group had hosted Hydro Aluminum's fabrication facilities for years at their Bella Vista Manufacturing Community in Empalme, Sonora. Eisele knew Hydro Aluminum was satisfied with its Mexico facilities, but he also trusted their management staff and the care with which they had selected The Offshore Group as a manufacturing partner.

"I knew from our relationship," Eisele says, "that they [Hydro Aluminum] had performed an extensive due diligence on where they wanted their fabrication facility prior to moving to Mexico. After meeting with The Offshore Group, I was also convinced that was the right decision for us as well."

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"I was impressed and pleased that they allowed me to get real answers to all of my concerns."

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Eisele toured The Offshore Group facilities, impressed not only by the company's responsiveness, but also by the degree of freedom he had to engage with other businesses in the Manufacturing Community. He met with several and was surprised by openness and candor of the meetings. He’d expected to be herded through a rehearsed presentation, and was happy to find The Offshore Group "did not try to direct or control the conversations in any way." Eisele reflects on that original trip, saying, "I was impressed and pleased that they allowed me to get real answers to all of my concerns." In 2007, after careful consideration, Minco made the move to The Offshore Group's facilities in Empalme, Mexico.

Teaming with The Offshore Group is just one step in Minco’s efforts to stay ahead of the market. Eisele says he appreciates "all the support that TOG offers in negotiations with the unions and by keeping all of their clients informed and educated with the changes in the labor and tax laws in Mexico."

The Offshore Group manages:

Free from the burden of those logistical and administrative challenges, Minco was able to concentrate on the changing landscape of the market.

The Offshore Group - Case study
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"I would not hesitate," Eisele says, "to recommend The Offshore Group to anyone considering relocating to Mexico."

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Part of Minco's strategic shift was aggressive pursuit of AS9100C certification. AS9100 is an international system of quality management standards for the Aviation, Space and Defense industries. In Eisele’s words, “The future for Minco is continued growth in the Aerospace Industry. We achieved AS9100C certification and are starting to acquire new aerospace customers.”

The Offshore Group works with the logistical and regulatory requirements needed to pair nearshore manufacturers with vendors and, ultimately, new customers. Today, Minco's Mexico facilities are ISO 9001:2008 certified and highly automated, with 60 precision CNC machines and 10 production robots. As the Minco suite of products has changed to keep pace with evolutions in the marketplace, their facilities at The Offshore Group's Empalme Manufacturing Communities have matched pace.

Eisele is also quick to point out the value of Minco's human capital in Mexico. “We started,” he says, “with 19 people and one building of approximately 38,000 square feet.” The company provides safe, good-paying jobs to a talented group of workers. Now, Minco is positioned to tackle future challenges and opportunities with over 70 young, well-educated and bilingual office staff in two sophisticated buildings.

It's been nearly a decade now since Minco shifted its manufacturing operations to Mexico. Eisele notes that Minco’s nearshore facilities support its domestic operations. Proximity to the border allows shipment anywhere in the U.S. within 2-3 days rather than the 4-6 weeks needed to get products from Asia. When asked if anything about the move surprised him, Eisele says, "Not surprised, but pleased. The Offshore Group has done everything they said they would do. Their support and customer service is exceptional.

Praise for nearshore manufacturing is something we always love to hear. However, Eisele's final words are perhaps more important to domestic manufacturers looking to maintain their competitive edge. His words are exactly the type of information that he was looking for himself back in 2005, and perhaps they can be the catalyst for the next company in search of a solution.

"I would not hesitate," Eisele says, "to recommend The Offshore Group to anyone considering relocating to Mexico."

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