CARW’s 2019 Rainmaker was one for the books. Taking place at Zimmerman Architects, the venue and hospitality fit the intimate nature of the event. We welcomed two fabulous thought leaders to share insights, information and advice on investment and site selection. Jason Hickey, President of Hickey and Associates, headquartered in New York, New York, highlighted the many positive aspects of the recent work he has done in Wisconsin, including access to labor relative to other States across the country; proximity to other large synergistic companies; and of course, ease of working with public entities on complicated deals. He highlighted the work done with Komatsu, sharing what public information he could, regarding the sheer willingness of all parties to pull together a favorable deal for Menomonee Valley / Harbor District and Komutsu with the City. He applauded the professionalism of City leaders and economic development professionals. Further in the presentation, he discussed the upcoming challenges in the workforce for manufacturing highlighting that business operations are generally dominated by labor costs – up to 80%. Globally, the aging workforce is putting pressure on companies looking to expand or relocate with the largest and fastest growing segment of the population being those over 65 years of age. Jason went on to suggest that Milwaukee’s workforce opportunity is promising with many strong graduates coming from MSOE, UW Milwaukee, Marquette University and UW Madison. His data suggested that the ‘brain drain” may be slowing with UW-Madison graduates are increasingly likely to stay in Madison or move to the Milwaukee area. Additional data featured in the presentation explored expansions and investments in the USA, tracking an increase over 2017 and 2018, in acquisition activity. More information and Jason’s presentation may be found HERE.
To contact Jason: HERE
Dave Spano, CEO of Annex Wealth Management also presented on Thursday. The presentation focused on market realities and the investment cycle. Several take aways from the program included the fact that the US is in the longest and slowest Expansion in history. This of course, following the longest recession in history. Other highlights included employment and wage growth as well as diving into the definition and implications of the ‘inverted yield curve’ which shows that younger treasury bond yields are yielding more interest than older ones. There are instances in history that the inverted yield curve may signal a recession or downturn in the economy. Dave reviewed other important economic indicators including consumer confidence. He suggested that revenue growth is more robust than earnings within US corporations indicating that company’s net profit over time may be slowing despite strong revenue numbers and healthy businesses. Dave touched on the tariff issues and their impact on the overall economy including consumer spending and possible economic uncertainty disrupting the investment markets. He also discussed the size of the national debt which is $23 trillion, larger than the entire US Economy. More information and Dave’s presentation may be found HERE.
To contact Dave: HERE