Posted 7:19 AM 4/25/2012 : Tucson toy company hopes to 'reshore'
TUCSON- The "Made in China" label is all over the place.
It's on our clothes, our technology and our toys. But now one Tucson company is hoping to pick up on a trend called "reshoring." It's aimed at bringing back overseas manufacturing jobs, closer to home.
"PlayAbility Toys" makes products for adults and children with special needs. CEO Marty Fox says since he started the company three years ago, the toys have always been made in either China or Malaysia. But now he's hoping to change that. "We're always looking for alternatives," Fox says.
Between the rising cost of fuel, which raises shipping costs, and the different time zones, Fox thinks he might be better off having his toys made in Nogales, Sonora. "I myself and some of the people that work for me wouldn't have to be doing 3 a.m. emailing and phone calls," he says.
The idea was pitched to Fox by Nogales' Economic Development Director Juan Cordero. "It's really a small manufacturing mecca, 45 minutes away from Tucson," Cordero says.
He says currently Nogales has about 33,000 manufacturing jobs. Employees make everything from aerospace products to medical supplies. "We have a manufacturing footprint and we're a low cost country," Cordero says.
Fox isn't quite sure yet how much he would save if he moves operations to Mexico but he says as long as the manufacturing costs aren't higher than overseas, it's a change he hopes to make soon.
"It boils down to manufacturing costs in one location versus the other and then the potential savings and possibly improved manager control you might have by having your factory closer to you," Fox says.
Fox plans to meet with Cordero in the future to tour some of the factories in Nogales.
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