By Ben Rand
The last year has been an exciting one for Insyte Consulting, first and foremost because our efforts to help WNY manufacturers have been paying big dividends.
According to independent quarterly surveys of our clients, conducted for the United States Department of Commerce (USDoC), Insyte helped generate over $317.4 million in economic benefits, including 1,134 jobs created or saved, in the last year. Those figures are a great indication of the health and well being of WNY manufacturing and the continued willingness of companies in our area to invest in improving their performance. In fact, WNY has been on a roll for the last few years: starting in 2012 Insyte has generated almost $1 billion in economic impact, with over 3,250 jobs created or saved. That is over 5% of WNY’s direct manufacturing jobs!
Based on that economic impact data, it should come as no surprise that since the beginning of 2013, Insyte is the No. 1 performer nationwide in the USDoC’s Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) program, which includes over 60 centers in all 50 states. USDoC compares the quantified impact of MEP work with the dollars of federal investment to measure performance. Insyte has been the top performer in the country for six of the last nine quarters, another indication that WNY’s manufacturing community is committed to innovation, growth and profit, which benefits us all.
Insyte has continued our active support of and involvement with the Buffalo Billion. The official opening of Buffalo Manufacturing Works, the new advanced manufacturing institute, in April 2015 was the culmination of several years of planning in which Insyte was actively involved. Buffalo Manufacturing Works brings cutting-edge technology and world-class expertise to WNY, offering area manufacturers a unique opportunity to make their products better, faster and cheaper, and in the process create a competitive advantage. We are excited to be partners in Buffalo Manufacturing Works with EWI, the World Trade Center Buffalo Niagara and UB. Insyte has also assisted SolarCity with their supply chain needs, provided judging, mentoring and sponsorship for the 43North business plan competition and conducted focus groups for the Workforce Development Center initiative.
In addition to our work with 43North, Insyte continues to actively assist WNY entrepreneurs, both directly and through our many partner organizations. We administer the new Buffalo Angels LLC investor fund, which completed its initial raise and made its first investment in 2014. Insyte also served on the Erie County Industrial Development Agency’s Venture Capital Advisory Group before the IDA announced in March that it would again offer venture funding for selected area startups. Insyte also provides administrative support to LaunchNY whose mission is to identify, support and invest in high-growth, high-impact companies. These activities were in addition to our longstanding and ongoing work with the WNY Venture Association and the federal government’s SBIR/STTR program.
Finally, we cannot end this annual report without gratefully acknowledging our partners who provide grant support for many of our WNY manufacturing clients. National Grid continues its support for manufacturers under its groundbreaking and highly successful Manufacturing Productivity Program. In WNY alone, this program has provided almost $1.5 million to manufacturers and generated $340 million in economic benefits since 2009, including over 1,400 jobs. Insyte was also proud to work with the Chautauqua County Industrial Development Agency to secure grant funding from the Southern Tier West Regional Planning & Development Board for manufacturing improvement projects in Allegany, Cattaraugus and Chautauqua Counties. It is an exciting time for manufacturing in WNY!