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Summer 2019 Silicon Valley Manufacturing Roundtable —  Maximizing Growth through Financial Planning


Hosted by Manufacture:San Jose (MFG:SJ), the Summer 2019 Silicon Valley Manufacturing Roundtable brought in 70 participants interested in learning more about financial planning as a tool for maximizing growth. The Keynote Speaker was Amadea Sanchez, Business Development Officer for Wells Fargo. She walked the participants through the detailed and feature-rich website that Wells Fargo Bank has developed to help small and medium-sized businesses gain and keep control of all aspects of their financial operations.

The tools on the site include advice on developing a realistic business plan to ensuring the business has a network of trusted professionals including an attorney, a CPA and a marketing partner. Included on the site are ways to manage the risks that can come from fraud or laxness in complying with tax law. Finally, Amadea shared the basic considerations that Wells Fargo applies to granting business loans, and how to manage the finances to maximize your ability to leverage cash when needed.

The panel discussion that followed illustrated the ways businesses can successfully leverage debt. The moderator was Michael Erickson, Regional Director of Manufacture:San Jose, host of the Silicon Valley Manufacturing Roundtable. The panelists were Suzanne Sabharwal, Trade Credit Consultant for Euler Hermes; Nathan Pendleton, Owner of Nox Cookie Bar;  Matt Nesper, SVP and Market Executive for Bank of America/Merrill Lynch; and Jean Michel Bourdon, VP of Operations at Rose Electronics.

SVMR Panel from left: Michael Erickson, MFG:SJ Regional Director and panel moderator; Matt Nesper, SVP and Market Executive for Bank of America/Merrill Lynch; Nathan Pendleton, Owner of Nox Cookie Bar; Jean Michel Bourdon, VP of Operations at Rose Electronics; Suzanne Sabharwal, Trade Credit Consultant for Euler Hermes.

Some of the highlights:

  • Nathan, founder of of Nox Cookie Bar, shared that a year after opening his first retail location, a deep financial analysis showed that his revenues for wholesale production showed a really strong upside potential, and this prompted a shift in the business plan, resulting in a significant contract with Safeway for the small company. A strategic line of credit was the key to the necessary investment to take advantage of the opportunity.
  • Jean Michel, VP Operations of Rose Electronics, related that a Board-directed financial analysis of Rose had uncovered an unused and virtually forgotten line of credit, which suddenly became a life-line when one of Rose’s major customers was acquired and the battery manufacturer was challenged to re-think its international supply chair and invest in overseas manufacturing to support the unanticipated increased demand for product and the acquiring company’s much longer accounts payable terms.

Upcoming MFG:SJ events this year are a workshop on manufacturing careers held in conjunction with San Jose Public Libraries on Oct. 1, and the Silicon Valley Manufacturing Roundtable on Nov. 7, focusing on trends in food and beverage manufacturing. More information on MFG:SJ and its events are available online.

Manufacture: San Jose is a public-private initiative, with the goal to drive resources, knowledge, and visibility to the city’s more than 1200 manufacturers and the more than 65,000 men and women they employ. Launched in  2018, MFG : SJ is a partnership of the City of San Jose and the non-profits CMTC California’s Manufacturing Network, and SFMade.