The challenge

Major Custom Cable Inc., one of the largest manufacturers of data and communication cables in the U.S., started receiving assistance from the Mid-America Trade Adjustment Assistance Center (TAAC) in March 2012. Like many domestic manufacturers, this company was hit hard by import competition, especially from China. Chinese manufacturers began churning out cables of acceptable, but not great quality, for lower prices. The key, the owner felt, was rapid delivery, which is all but impossible for Chinese manufacturers.

The solution

The firm was awarded $75,000 in Trade Adjustment Assistance for Firms (TAAF) funding which they matched to total $150,000 to implement the following strategic projects:

  • An upgrade to its development software to refine the company's IT systems
  • Production equipment testing to advance the quality of the fiber optic product line and reduce the labor cost of testing
  • Production equipment testing of new products
  • Product certification 

Results since program entry

  • Leveraging TAAF funds, the company was able to invest its own money on new equipment, halting a decline in sales and helping the company create a new line of import-proof products.
  • The company was able to increase their annual revenues by more than $1 million from the time they entered and then completed the TAAF program.