Detroit, Shinola is ‘Made in USA’ success story

 

detroit-shinola

Detroit (AFP) – From the outside, there’s nothing much to say about this nondescript, hulking building in downtown Detroit, once the cradle of American industry.

But inside this former General Motors research lab, the fifth floor has been transformed into a state-of-the-art workshop producing watches and high-end bicycles.

Welcome to Shinola, a young American luxury lifestyle company breathing new life into the “Made in USA” label — a designation championed by President-elect Donald Trump.

The firm, which shares the building with a design school, has built an open factory space with wooden desks reminiscent of 1950s movie sets and high-tech machinery.

Watches, handbags, appointment books and other accessories carrying the “Made in Detroit” label are turned out here, while the bikes — made from parts designed in neighboring Wisconsin — and turntables, a new product, are assembled at the flagship store located nearby.

Dozens of employees work here — most of them African Americans, who make up the majority of residents in this blighted working-class city, forced into bankruptcy in 2013 under the weight of its massive debt.

Detroit suffered hugely from the decline of US manufacturing and especially the difficulties facing the “Big Three” — auto giants General Motors, Ford and Fiat Chrysler.

The unemployment rate hit 10.4 percent in November, compared to the national average of 4.6 percent, according to official statistics.

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Jessica Alba’s Honest Co recalls organic baby powder in US

  • Jessica Alba, Founder and Chief Creative Officer of The Honest Company, speaks at the Milken Institute Global Conference in Beverly Hills, California, U.S., May 3, 2016.

    Jessica Alba, Founder and Chief Creative Officer of The Honest Company, speaks at the Milken Institute Global Conference in Beverly Hills, California, U.S., May 3, 2016.  (REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)

The Honest Company, the brand co-founded by actress Jessica Alba, issued a voluntary recall for all bottles of its organic baby powder sold in the United States over concerns of eye and skin infections. The California-based company said that the decision was reached after recent tests detected possible contaminations from microorganisms that could cause infection.

“With the full knowledge and under the guidance of the FDA, we’ve decided to voluntarily recall this product out of an abundance of caution,” Christopher Gavigan, co-founder, said in a video on The Honest Company’s website. Read more of this post

Ford cancels plans for Mexico plant

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Ford Motor Co. is canceling plans to build a new manufacturing plant in Mexico and instead is investing $700 million in Michigan, the automaker announced on Tuesday.

The company’s CEO, Mark Fields, told CNN that the move is a “vote of confidence” in President-elect Donald Trump’s pledge to create a pro-business environment. Fields emphasized, however, that he did not negotiate any special deal with Trump.

“We didn’t cut a deal with Trump,” he said. “We did it for our business.”

Trump bashed Ford on the campaign trail over the automaker’s plan to invest $1.6 billion in Mexico by shifting its North American small-car production south of the border. Ford had emphasized that the move would not affect U.S. jobs because the automaker would be putting new vehicles into the Michigan plants.

But now Ford will instead build the Ford Focus at an existing plant in Mexico. It will also invest $700 million in its plant in Flat Rock, Mich. and create 700 jobs in an effort to produce more electric and self-driving cars. The automaker has said it plans to build a fully self-driving car by 2021.

“I am thrilled that we have been able to secure additional UAW-Ford jobs for American workers,” said Jimmy Settles, United Auto Workers vice president, according to CNN.

A Ford spokeswoman told The Hill that Trump’s team was notified of their plans Tuesday morning.

Ford is not the only automaker to draw Trump’s ire. Earlier Tuesday, the president-elect blasted General Motors on Twitter, threatening a “big border tax” on GM models made in Mexico.

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World’s Biggest Surveillance Camera Maker Sending Footage to China


Security cameras in front of the giant portrait of former Chinese Chairman Mao Zedong on Beijing's Tiananmen Square, Nov. 11, 2012.

Security cameras in front of the giant portrait of former Chinese Chairman Mao Zedong on Beijing’s Tiananmen Square, Nov. 11, 2012.

Imagine a world where almost everyone can be tracked, and everything can be seen by cameras linked directly to the Chinese government.

The rapid growth of a little known Chinese manufacturer of high-powered surveillance technology has some people concerned that it’s no longer a theory.

Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology, a company controlled by the Chinese government, is now the world’s largest supplier of video surveillance equipment, with internet-enabled cameras installed in more than 100 countries.

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Phones Secretly Sending Data to China


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A serious, and potentially frightening, security vulnerability involving some Android smartphones came to light Tuesday.

Phones made by Blu, a U.S. company, were transmitting their owners’ personal data to a computer server in China owned by Shanghai Adups Technology Co., which supplies software to mobile device makers.

Initially, it was unclear how the data was being used, though security experts feared it could have been accessible by the Chinese government.

Now, however, Adups has issued an apology, saying that the data was collected in error and has been deleted.

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Ford NOT moving Lincoln SUV to Mexico

reuters
By David Shepardson | WASHINGTON

 

On Thursday, Trump posted on Twitter: “I worked hard with Bill Ford to keep the Lincoln plant in Kentucky. I owed it to the great State of Kentucky for their confidence in me!”

“He will be keeping the Lincoln plant in Kentucky – no Mexico,” the President-elect tweeted.

But Ford has repeatedly said it has no plans to close any U.S. plants and likely could not do so under the terms of the current United Auto Workers contract that expires in 2019.

This is not the first time Trump’s comments about Ford production have been called into question. Laslincoln-suvt year, he took credit for Ford moving work from Mexico to Ohio, while the automaker had already made the decision in 2011 – long before Trump announced a run for president.

Spokeswoman Christin Baker said Ford “confirmed with the President-elect that our small Lincoln utility vehicle made at the Louisville Assembly plant will stay in Kentucky”.

“We are encouraged that President-elect Trump and the new Congress will pursue policies that will improve U.S. competitiveness and make it possible to keep production of this vehicle here in the United States,” she added, in a statement.

 

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Counterfeit on Amazon

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Amazon.com (AMZN) is finally taking counterfeiters to court.

The e-commerce giant for the first time has filed lawsuits against counterfeit sellers, after a number of businesses on Amazon voiced concern that knockoffs were killing their sales and endangering consumers.

On Monday, Amazon filed suit against a group of sellers for infringing on athletic training equipment developed by TRX. In a second case, Amazon sued sellers who are offering fake versions of a patented moving product called Forearm Forklift.

Last month, CNBC.com featured Forearm Forklift , a Southern California company that has been crushed in recent years from counterfeiting on Amazon. Mark Lopreiato, the founder of the company, which makes straps for lifting and moving heavy equipment, said he submitted more than 100 cease-and-desist letters to sellers and takedown notices to Amazon, yet fakes have continued to proliferate. Read more of this post

Yummi Bears vitamins are falsely labeled as ‘MADE IN USA’

Legal News Line

Louie Torres

yummi-bears

CHICAGO (Legal Newsline) – An Illinois man alleges a Santa Ana, California, company uses misleading and inaccurate labels on its vitamins.

Matt Wisniewski filed a complaint on behalf of all others similarly situated in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Eastern Division against Hero Nutritionals Inc. alleging violation of the Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act, the Illinois Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act and other counts.

According to the complaint, the plaintiff alleges that he suffered damages as the result of being misled into purchasing the defendant’s Yummi Bears vitamins, which he believed to be domestically sourced because of the words “Made in the USA” on the label. The plaintiff holds Hero Nutritionals Inc. responsible because the defendant allegedly uses foreign-sourced ingredients in the vitamins and the Made in USA label is deceptive.

The plaintiff requests a trial by jury and seeks injunction against the defendant, award plaintiff compensatory and punitive damages, all legal fees and interest, and any further relief the court grants. He is represented by John E. Norris of Davis & Norris LLP in Birmingham, Alabama, and Julie Simpson of Simpson Law Group in St. Charles, Illinois.

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Eastern Division Case number 1:16-cv-07144

Original Link

http://legalnewsline.com/stories/510965828-consumer-alleges-yummi-bears-vitamins-are-falsely-labeled-as-made-in-usa

Made in America? 5 charged with fraud in alleged boot scheme

Made in America? 5 charged with fraud in alleged boot scheme

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September 16, 2016 (Photo Credit: Spc. Stephanie Ramirez/Army)
Executives and employees at Tennessee defense contractor for years assured the U.S. military that the boots they made for troops came from America when in fact they’d been shipped from China, the U.S. government alleges.

Five employees and principals of the former Wellco Enterprises Inc. were indicted this week in U.S. District Court in Greeneville, Tennessee. They appeared Thursday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Clifton Corker, pleading not guilty.

The defendants: Vincent L. Ferguson, 65, of Knoxville; Matthew L. Ferguson, 40, of Lenoir City; Kerry J. Ferguson, 35, of Houston; Matthew H. Martland, 32, of Knoxville; and Stephanie L. Kaemmerer, 44, of Knoxville.

The five are free on bond pending trial. Counts against them include wire fraud, major fraud against the United States and smuggling goods into the U.S.

The charges allege the defendants conspired from December 2008 to August 2012 in a scheme to sell thousands of bogus boots to the U.S. government for troops. From 2006 through 2012, the Defense Department paid Wellco more than $138 million for military footware, according to the indictment.
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Companies Saying Goodbye to the U.S.

 

By Published September 14, 2016 Business Leaders

Ford announced today it will be hitting the road, taking its small-car production across the border to Mexico.

So, this had FOXBusiness.com thinking – what other companies have jumped ship, relocating their operations outside of the U.S.? The North American Free Trade Agreement, once thought to be a saving grace for the economy, instead offers access to cheaper labor elsewhere. Combine this with the U.S. corporate tax rate, one of the highest in the world, and you’ve got plenty of incentive for companies to abandon their U.S. bases.

So which other companies have joined the ranks of Ford and moved production out of the U.S.? Here are 5 big businesses taking their jobs elsewhere.

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