DEARBORN – The National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC) honored Ford Motor Company yesterday as Corporation of the Year. This is the fourth time in nearly 25 years Ford has received this prestigious honor, which recognizes the company’s commitment to economically empowering minority, women and veteran-owned businesses and job creation.
“Our suppliers are a key part of our One Ford team, and we are committed to building a supplier base that reflects our employees, our customers and our shareholders,” said Alan Mulally, Ford president and CEO. “Having a broad and diverse supplier base reinforces our commitment to the communities where we live and work, and enables us to serve customers with a full family of vehicles offering the very best quality, fuel efficiency, safety, smart design and value.”
Ford launched its Supplier Diversity Development program in 1978 with a goal to deliver support to minority and women-owned businesses, to create business opportunities for diverse suppliers to grow into profitable enterprises, and to further strengthen a Ford supplier network base that reflects the company’s workforce and customer base. These goals have manifested in several examples over the past year including:
•Detroit Thermal Systems (DTS): A recently announced joint venture between Valeo and V. Johnson Enterprises, a minority-owned supplier, DTS will produce climate control systems and components for the automotive industry, including supporting current product supply commitments to Ford. Ultimately, DTS is expected to employ approximately 500 people
•Detroit Manufacturing Systems (DMS): Also a new joint venture between Faurecia and Rush Group Ltd., part of the Rush Group of companies that includes one of Ford’s largest minority and women-owned suppliers. DMS provides injection molding, assembly and sequencing of interior trim parts. About 500 people are expected to be employed at the DMS facility in Detroit
•Husco Automotive Technologies: Husco, a Hispanic company based in Waukesha, Wis., was added to Ford’s list of Aligned Business Framework (ABF) suppliers. ABF companies, or Ford’s preferred supplier network, enter into long-term relationships with Ford to strengthen collaboration and drive mutual profitability and technology development. Husco produces actuators used for variable camshaft-timing components across various Ford vehicles
•Flex-N-Gate Corporation: A minority-owned company located in Urbana, Ill., Flex-N-Gate became one of the first examples of Ford’s Joint Technology Framework (JTF) initiative. JTF is a special program aimed at improving suppliers’ technical expertise through access to the company’s intellectual assets and other support. Flex-N-Gate technology is available on the 2013 Ford Fusion and 2013 Lincoln MKZ
•Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC): Ford was selected for WBENC’s 13th annual listing of America’s Top Corporations for Women’s Business Enterprises. It was the first time an automaker has earned the award
•Michigan Minority Supplier Development Council (MMSDC): Ford also won the MMSDC 2012 Corporation of the Year marking the third time the company was honored with this award
“I cannot think of a more fitting way to continue celebrating NMSDC’s 40th anniversary,” said Joset B. Wright, president of NMSDC. “Over the years, Ford has been a true supporter of NMSDC’s initiatives. In 2012, due to the company’s policies, supplier investment, technology support, and joint venture and strategic-alliance creation, we felt Ford took its efforts to a new level and embodied an absolute model of minority supplier development and collaboration.”
Ford has a goal of sourcing 10 percent of its U.S. production and nonproduction purchases with diverse suppliers and the company is on track to meet this goal for 2012. Also this year, Ford moved to strengthen its support of another diverse group – veterans – by sourcing at least 3 percent from veteran-owned suppliers and requiring tier-one suppliers to do the same.
“2012 has been a banner year for us for supplier diversity development,” said Tony Brown, group vice president, Global Purchasing, Ford Motor Company. “Ford is the first automaker to win WBENC and NMSDC top corporation awards in one year. These awards recognize the hard work of our Ford team and confirm our One Ford plan is working to deliver vehicles people truly want and value, with industry-leading quality, fuel efficiency, safety and smart technology.”
For information on NMSDC, go to www.nmsdc.org.