Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

News

June 20, 2013

Honda Indiana president speaks at Auto Expo

Greensburg — The second annual Southern Indiana Automotive Expo kicked off with many attendees and an abundance of enthusiasm.

A large number of booths were set up to allow vendors to showcase new products and innovations to other manufacturers. Vendors were able to talk to other industry professionals and network, possibly creating new business opportunities and starting valuable professional relationships.

Marc Coplon, of the Decatur County Economic Development Corporation (EDC), took the microphone first to do an introduction for the Auto Expo and to thank the parties that made the event possible. Among those he mentioned were the owner of the building, who allowed the space to be used for the expo, Mancino’s, who catered Thursday’s lunch at the expo, Highpoint Orchard, who will cater Friday’s breakfast and local car dealerships and the Honda plant, who provided the vehicles on display.

Mayor Gary Herbert then took the podium to welcome attendees to the expo. “The automotive industry has been great for Greensburg,” he said. He went on to talk about all the benefits the automotive industry has brought to city, county, and state. He continued to say, “The city and the county are one, united in support for everything the EDC and the automotive industry are doing in Greensburg.”

Marc Coplon then introduced Honda Manufacturing of Indiana president Bob Nelson. Coplon listed the professional accomplishments that led to Nelson’s presidency and gave a warm welcome to the Honda president.

Nelson thanked everyone for attending and gave a brief history of the auto expo and Honda’s involvement with it. Nelson spoke about the drop in the automotive industry in recent years and gave the uplifting 2013 sales forecast projection of 15.5 million cars sold, giving a massive boost to the lagging industry.

Nelson went on to talk about the effect the 2011 earthquake in Japan and the tsunami in Thailand effected production at Honda plants and the various strides Honda took to adjust, as well as the things the company learned to prevent such a production hold up in the event of future disasters.

Honda has been producing cars in North America longer than any other international auto maker, and 90 percent of the Honda products sold are made in North America. Nelson said that soon, North America will be exporting more Honda vehicles than it imports.

Nelson showed several short videos about Honda, including a PBS special, “How A Car is Born,” that gave viewers an inside look into the manufacturing process. The Greensburg Honda plant is the only one in the world to produce the natural gas powered Civic, as well as the gasoline/hybrid models.

Nelson then went on to list the various awards and production achievements that Honda has accomplished in the last few years, which included adding a second shift and launching the Acura ILX hybrid model. The Greensburg plant produces a staggering 500 vehicles every shift. Nelson said, “We believe what makes a Honda is who makes a Honda.”

In addition to their community involvement, which is significant, Honda strives to be a leader in environmental efforts, earning a LEED certification and a 2012 Energy Star certification.

Honda uses a program called DREAM (Driving Results by Engaging Associates’ Minds) as a way for employees to make suggestions and give idea on ways to improve effectiveness and cut costs. Nelson stated that Honda is always encouraging fresh ideas.

Nelson shared a portion of an interview with Sean McAlinden of the Center for Automotive Research, who said, “Honda has some of the happiest and most loyal customers in the industry- and that’s no accident.”

Nelson then spoke about the relationship Honda strives to uphold with its suppliers and the importance of open communication. In 2012, Honda spent $2.3 billion for parts that come from local suppliers. Honda works with 47 suppliers in Indiana alone. In addition, they offer training and support to suppliers, further increasing the effectiveness of their professional relationship. Several videos were shown giving testimonials from companies that work directly with Honda in a supplier capacity.

The importance of good supplier/purchaser relationships was stressed by Nelson. The purchasing and supply teams must work together to be the most competitive team in the world, Nelson said. He went on to state that the teams need to be globally competitive, even right here in Greensburg.

Local community plays a major role in the success of Honda Manufacturing of Indiana, according to Nelson. “Let us know how we can be a part of the community, we absolutely love it here.”

Nelson finished his speaking time with a question and answer session with those in attendance. He answered questions about turning to local suppliers versus overseas suppliers after the 2011 natural disasters, further expansion plans, levels of education required to work with Honda, and the best way for potential suppliers to present themselves to Honda.

After the questions were answered, the assembly enjoyed a delicious lunch catered by Mancino’s.

When asked for his thoughts on Nelson’s speech, Marc Coplon said, “I thought Bob’s comments on workforce development and the workforce were very important to helping our economic development efforts with Honda and its suppliers across the Midwest. I thought he gave potential suppliers some very good advice on doing business with Honda.”

More photos from this event can be found at www.greensburgdailynews.smugmug.com.

Contact: Amanda Browning 812-663-3111 x7004

1
Text Only
News
  • Decatur County Events Calendar Local clubs, service groups, fraternal organizations and others are encouraged to send their Coming Events information to the Daily News at news@greensburgdailynews.com or Daily News, PO Box 106, Greensburg, IN 47240. April 22 1 to 3 p.m. - Euchre at

    April 19, 2014

  • Hoosiers need to move over for workers GREENSBURG - Hoosiers need to slow down and move over to allow a cushion of space for vehicles stopped on the road's shoulder, particularly on the interstates. National Work Zone Awareness Week was last week and the 17th anniversary of Indiana State

    April 19, 2014

  • Lunch Menus April 21 – April 25 Good Shepherd Christian Academy Monday - Pizza, grape tomatoes, strawberries and cake, milk Tuesday - Spaghetti and meatballs, garlic bread, salad, ice cream, milk Wednesday - Chicken nuggets, tater tots, green beans, casserole, applesauce, milk Thu

    April 19, 2014

  • Graduation rates high GREENSBURG -- Greensburg and South Decatur High schools had among the best graduation rates in the state last year. North Decatur High School ranked near the middle, but still above the state average. Greensburg reported a graduation rate of 99.3 per

    April 19, 2014

  • nws-gb041914-pig virus photo Pig virus taking toll GREENSBURG -- When Decatur County farmer Jeff Smiley ducked into the nursery barn, about two dozen piglets rushed into a corner of their pen, their pinkish hides bouncing into one another like a porcine version of bumper cars. The piglet's round nose

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • nws-gb041914-santee fire station - pic1 (please place on pg1) Clarksburg Vol. Fire Department breaks ground on Station 2 CLARKSBURG -- In 2012, members of the Clarksburg Volunteer Fire Department (CVFD) Board of Directors proposed building a new Firehouse to service the Lake Santee Community. CVFD Board President Wayne Geiss recalls that construction of a separate Fire

    April 19, 2014 3 Photos

  • A pedicure that cured all my pet peeves Since I was a young person, I always had some pets around. Most of these have been dogs, hunting dogs in particular. And I loved my pets. In getting older, I discovered that having a pet dog around is a lot of work. More work than I care to do in lig

    April 19, 2014

  • Church Briefs Liberty Baptist Church Sunday, April 20 - Resurrection Sunday Liberty Baptist Church will have Sunrise Service at 7 a.m. in the Sanctuary, with the women doing the program. Following the Sunrise service the men of the congregation will serve Easter B

    April 19, 2014

  • Cards RHP Kelly on DL WASHINGTON -- St. Louis Cardinals right-hander Joe Kelly has been put on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left hamstring. The Cardinals also optioned righty reliever Keith Butler to Triple-A Memphis and recalled rookie right-handers Eric Forn

    April 18, 2014

  • nws-gb041814-ymca flat rock - pic2 Local retreat mostly unknown around Decatur County ST. PAUL -- Out in the northwest corner of Decatur County lies a place that's largely unknown within the county itself. Oddly enough, this hideaway of natural splendor is anything but secret to the rest of the world. From Spain and Hong Kong they com

    April 18, 2014 2 Photos