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Manufacturing Matters


Members of Leadership Savannah toured Gulfstream's showroom.

GAM speaks for manufacturers.

A couple of weeks ago, Gulfstream invited me to speak with Leadership Savannah about Georgia’s manufacturing industry.  

Gulfstream is a valued member of GAM. Leadership Savannah is a program administered by the Savannah Chamber to provide local leaders with learning experiences that promote a better understanding of the community and state.  

I was honored to participate.  

To best help these leaders gain quick insight on our industry, I shared “five fast facts”:  

  • The definition of manufacturing is changing. The US Government defines manufacturing as “the mechanical, physical or chemical transformation of materials, substances or components into new parts” as well as “assembling component parts of manufactured products.” But the application of software and AI to manufacturing has made this definition dated and narrow. Consider this: Over 98% of a smartphone’s value is derived from its intellectual property; the other 2% from assembly. We live in an exciting time when the very definition of what our industry does is going through a rapid transformation.


  • Georgia is the best state for manufacturing. Based on analysis by independent experts, GA is the #1 state in which to do business – and has been for 10 years in a row. In fact, based on 13 key criteria, Georgia is first in eight categories and second in three others. It’s not even close. Little wonder so many manufacturers continue to come to our state. 


  • Manufacturing matters to Georgia. Our state’s manufacturers produce $74 billion in annual economic output, contributing nearly 10% of Georgia’s GDP.  Manufacturing also produces the largest “multiplier effect” of any sector in the economy. Every dollar of final demand for manufactured products generates an additional $1.31 in demand for products that are required to produce the original manufactured product. 


  • Manufacturing faces critical issues. Workforce development, energy, tax provisions, transportation, water access -- among others. The point is that the industry is exposed to risks, and public policy needs to consider them to protect the industry for the long term. 


  • And finally, GAM is the association for manufacturers. We are the voice of the industry; we tell its story. We advocate for fair legislation; reasonably priced, abundant energy; and strive to innovate solutions to solve the workforce challenge. Our members employ nearly half the state’s manufacturing population. 

Then I provided a sixth, “bonus point” for Leadership Savannah members to consider. I asked that, as community and state leaders, they continue to learn more about Georgia manufacturing so they can make informed policy decisions about its future.  

Our industry matters. We make investments in facilities and communities that endure for decades. We employ over 400,000 people and we need more. We create jobs and train workers for those jobs, giving opportunities for rewarding careers that create generational wealth for families. We provide benefits 25-30% higher than other sectors, including 401K programs. At a time when nearly 50% of American households have zero retirement savings, manufacturing is helping to secure the future for American workers.  

GAM takes great pride in serving our industry and all the good it makes. 

GAM is speaking up for manufacturers every day. If you would like to invite a member of the GAM team to speak to your group, or if you know a manufacturer who should be a member of our ranks, please reach out: 

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