The Obama Effect … and counter effect

January 29, 2014
By: Kate Bachman

On the advent of President Obama’s fifth State of the Union address last night, I was in Manitowoc, Wis., population 33,736, visiting and touring Jagemann Stamping.

I’ll forego weighing in on the state of the country’s economy, but I can weigh in on the state of Jagemann Stamping. The company’s economy is strong. Very strong. Last year, its annual sales grew by 50 percent, following a 30 percent sales growth the year before.

Coincidentally, the last time I was in Manitowoc, it was the day after the president’s Jan. 24, 2011 state of the union address. President Obama had visited lighting and renewable energy manufacturer Orion Energy Systems, and I was invited to attend the press event surrounding the visit.

This year’s address contained references and support for renewable energy and energy efficiency, which has factored in both Orion’s and Jagemann’s successes. Orion makes solar light pipes, which illuminate facilities using a form of solar energy called daylighting. The manufacturer also makes energy-efficient fluorescent lighting.

Jagemann Stamping has capitalized on the energy efficiency leanings of this administration too, in particular because of the increasingly higher CAFE standards (corporate average fuel economy) for vehicles the president has initiated. The high CAFE standards have increased the volume of the manufacture and sales of hybrid vehicles, which, in turn, have increased the number of solenoids needed to control the high voltages. The stamping manufacturer has been happy to oblige by making more of the casings for solenoids.

Ironically, another growth area for the stamper exploded when Barack Obama was elected, but not because he supported the industry.

CEO Tom Jagemann said that when the bottom fell out of the automotive industry in late 2008, early 2009, he went to a gun industry tradeshow seeking a replacement industry market for his company’s stampings. He found it there, in spades.

Theories surfaced that the Obama Administration’s efforts for better gun control apparently inadvertently provided ammo to fears that gun and ammunition sales would be restricted.

“As gun sales surged in early 2009 the going joke among employees of gun manufacturers was that President Barack Obama was the greatest gun salesman of all time,’” reported Forbes magazine contributor Frank Miniter in an Aug. 23, 2012 blog.

The NY Times’ Michael Cooper reported in a Jan. 11, 2013 article, “Gun dealers and buyers alike said that the rapid growth in gun sales — which began climbing significantly after President Obama’s re-election and soared after the Dec. 14 shooting at a school in Newtown, Conn., prompted him to call for new gun laws— shows little sign of abating.”

It’ll be interesting to see what effects—and counter effects—the President’s goals and agenda announced in the Jan. 28th State of the Union address will have on the stamping industry in the future.

To read more about Jagemann Stamping Co., check out the cover story in the upcoming March/April issue of STAMPING Journal.

Got thoughts? I’d love to hear from you.

Kate Bachman

Kate Bachman

FMA Communications Inc.
2135 Point Blvd
Elgin, IL 60123
Phone: 815-381-1302