His life was all planned out. TJ Bonnett obtained an accounting degree at the University of St. Thomas, and joined his family’s accounting firm. He assumed operational control of the family business in his early 30s. But Bonnett soon discovered he was not satisfied. He wanted a bigger challenge, and the opportunity to develop his skills as an executive. Read More
Ron Kirscht, president of Alexandria-based Donnelly Custom Manufacturing, has a complicated job. He specializes in short-run, low-volume injection-mold manufacturing for clients in various industries. The operation uses 600 materials and 2,800 customized molds for runs of anywhere from a few dozen to tens of thousands of parts. Read More
Modern manufacturing is a technology-driven enterprise. It’s simply not optional for manufacturers to keep abreast of technological changes pertinent to their industries. Those that do, thrive; those that don’t, struggle. It might be essential, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy. Read More

Photo via iStock

Late last month, the Institute for Supply Management raised eyebrows across the Midwest when it reported a much lower than expected factory activity reading across the nine-state region (per Fox Business). Read More

Jashan Eison talks shop with employees. Photo by Joel Schnell

In 2012, Jashan Eison and CFO Fred Poferl at H&B Elevators were informed the company would be put up for sale. A fixture in south Minneapolis since 1921, the company designs and constructs elevator cabs, interiors, and entrances. Read More
In our August 2013 issue we told the story of Delano-based Landscape Structures, a manufacturer of playgrounds that’s grown from a startup with a vision — and a concern for child development — to a giant in its niche. Read More
For manufacturers looking to grow, finding adequately trained workers can be difficult. Ultra Machining Company addresses the problem head on.  Read More
Minneapolis-based manufacturing startup Life Floor is expanding to the West Coast and opening a new manufacturing facility in South Dakota this April. Read More
A competition robot packing a MaxBotix sensor

A competition robot packing a MaxBotix sensor

About 12 years ago, Bob Gross of Brainerd, Minnesota, entered a robotics competition with his 11-year-old daughter. Much to their frustration, they kept having problems with their robot’s sensor — the closest thing it had to eyes. Read More