BROWNSVILLE, Texas – The Brownsville Community Improvement Corporation (BCIC) and the Texas Manufacturing Assistance Center (TMAC) at The University of Texas at Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) has announced a new partnership focusing on workforce development.
They plan to work together to deliver coaching, training and project implementation for small- to medium-size manufacturing businesses. They believe this can accelerate profitable growth and improve the bottom line of their clients.
Josh Mejia, executive director of BCIC, wants small manufacturing enterprises (SME) that have struggled to overcome growth challenges to consider expanding or relocating to Brownsville. He said the new program can help. He said the new workforce development program will not only provide technical assistance to promote operational efficiencies but will also include strategic planning for future objectives that will promote growth for the client.
“We have an abundance of local companies in the Rio Grande Valley that have achieved a level of success which has provided the region with jobs and investment, however, most of these companies know they can continue to grow and reach new markets through strategic expansion and technical assistance,” Mejia said.
“We firmly believe, as we continue to seek the correct partners to address these SME challenges in our region, that if we provide the necessary resources to our business owners and validate their potential, they will reach new heights.”
David Ortiz, regional director of TMAC South Texas at UTRGV, said his group delivers hands-on business management, technology and operations solutions to a wide range of businesses, including manufacturing, distribution, logistics, construction, health care and government.
He pointed out that with over 4,447 companies served throughout the state, TMAC has been successful in helping businesses obtain over $1.9 billion in cost savings or reductions on materials, labor, inventory and equipment as well as retain or create over 60,000 jobs in Texas.
Ortiz noted that TMAC is part of a nationwide network, Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP), and it is funded by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) under the U.S. Department of Commerce.
“We are very excited to start this partnership with BCIC to provide local manufacturers and entrepreneurs the tools to become successful and strengthen the local economy,” Ortiz said.
“Small- and mid-sized companies are the backbone of the U.S. economy and most do not have the same resources that big corporations do. Our program’s goal is to ensure these businesses get the assistance they need to address their pain points and areas of opportunity.”
BCIC’s Mejia said a key strategy for his group is to enable small businesses to become resilient, foster innovation, and begin to scale-up through equitable economic development opportunities that empower the region’s human capital first.
One successful case study that resulted from this new partnership has been the successful expansion of JOPA Corporation to Brownsville. JOPA does business as “Tortillería Monterrey.”
News of JOPA’s expansion was made through a joint press release by the City of Brownsville, the Greater Brownsville Incentives Corporation, and the Brownsville Community Improvement Corporation.
Editor’s Note: Josh Mejia, executive director of BCIC, and Nathan Burkhart, the group’s director of marketing & small business development, recently conducted a conversation via Zoom with Rio Grande Guardian editor Steve Taylor. They talked about quality of life issues, helping Brownsville businesses recover from the economic downturn caused by the coronavirus, BCIC’s new eBridge Center, and the impact of SpaceX on housing prices. Click here to watch the Zoom conversation.
More information about Brownsville Community Improvement Corporation
The BCIC is a “Type B” Economic Development Organization for Brownsville and its mission is to enhance the quality of life of residents through equitable and innovative economic development initiatives. The BCIC has adopted a strategic plan that is tailored to make Brownsville, Texas a city-destination of choice for businesses, a leading economic development corporation in the state, and promote sports and recreational tourism to the city. The organization continues to expand their reach and supplement Brownsville’s economic forefront for the benefit of our most important stakeholders: the residents of Brownsville, Texas.
Contact: Nathan Burkhart
BCIC Marketing and Small Business Development
Email: [email protected]
More information about TMAC
TMAC has worked with thousands of Texas organizations since its inception in 1995. TMAC is the official representative of the MEP National Network and NIST MEP in The State of Texas. The MEP National Network is a unique public-private partnership that delivers comprehensive, proven solutions to U.S. manufacturers, fueling growth and advancing U.S. manufacturing.
TMAC’s mission is to improve the global competitiveness of the Texas economy by working to grow the extended manufacturing enterprise. TMAC delivers hands-on business management, technology and operations solutions to a wide range of businesses, including manufacturing, distribution, logistics and others. TMAC is an organization that accelerates profitable growth by developing and improving profits, products, processes, technologies and people.
Contact: David Ortiz
TMAC Regional Director
Email: [email protected]
More information about NIST MEP
The MEP National NetworkTM is a unique public-private partnership that delivers comprehensive, proven solutions to U.S. manufacturers, fueling growth and advancing U.S. manufacturing. Focused on helping small and medium-sized manufacturers generate business results and thrive in today’s technology-driven economy, the MEP National Network comprises the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Manufacturing Extension Partnership (NIST MEP), 51 MEP Centers located in all 50 states and Puerto Rico, and its 1,400 trusted advisors and experts at nearly 385 MEP service locations, providing any U.S. manufacturer with access to resources they
need to succeed. In 2019, the MEP National Network generated $19.60 in new sales growth and $33.70 in new client investment. This translates into $2.9 billion in new sales. During this same time, for every $1,381 of federal investment, the Network created or retained one manufacturing job.