7 of 7
BACKNEXT
Rising costs and offshore rivals
Rising costs and offshore rivals
Harry Scoble
Owner, Summit Corporation of America
Thomaston, Conn.

We are in the electroplating business, coating metal onto metal for the automotive and electronics industries. Summit has been in business for 60 years - I bought it after it went bankrupt nearly four years ago. The nearby city of Waterbury used to be a booming brass town, but it has taken a hit as this type of work continues to be offloaded to China and countries with cheaper labor. Also, our commodity costs up are up, so our industry had its fair share of problems before the market took a turn for the worse.

We had to lay off employees now and again, but generally we were getting by and were even making improvements to our facility by becoming more environmentally compliant. But recently, we've had to lay off employees more regularly and cut back work hours at the facility.

In the past two years, we've shed 30 employees. Not only is it tough doing more with less, but it's demoralizing for the employees to see peers lose jobs. Unfortunately, we really need to conserve to work around cheaper, offshore competitors, rising costs and an economy that's really cutting into the bone of our business.

More galleries

LAST UPDATE: Jan 29 2009 | 2:34 PM ET
Sponsored by
More Galleries
6 designers shaking up fashion These designers are changing the way we dress, accessorize and shop, from custom made-to-fit dresses to smart jewelry that's actually stylish. More
8 must-have travel apps Whether you've got wanderlust or an airline grievance, here are some apps to pack onto your phone. More
Secrets to success from Smalltown USA Utah State professor Michael Glauser cycled 4,000 miles this summer, visiting 100 entrepreneurs across the country. Here's a snapshot of how they grew their businesses. More

Market indexes are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer The Dow Jones IndexesSM are proprietary to and distributed by Dow Jones & Company, Inc. and have been licensed for use. All content of the Dow Jones IndexesSM © 2014 is proprietary to Dow Jones & Company, Inc. Chicago Mercantile Association. The market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved. Most stock quote data provided by BATS.