I've been reading a lot over the past few months about companies pulling out of NPE2009 [June 22-26 in Chicago] and the reasons they've chosen to do so.
Times are hard harder than at any other time that most of us remember.
I can attest to that; I've been in this business 33 years. So I respect the right of every company to do what's best for them.
But make no mistake: I will be at NPE for sure. Let me tell you why:
Just like everyone else, our company has had its share of pain over the past 12 months.
We've done what we felt we had to do to continue to grow and survive. We've taken responsibility for ourselves and have done everything we can to support this fine industry instead of abandoning it.
When times get tough, we need to get smart. We need to band together to strengthen the industry that has sustained us all these years.
You can talk about government stimulus packages all you want; in the end, it's up to us to make something happen.
What better way to do this than at a venue like NPE?
People come to NPE from all around the world and, yes, from the U.S. as well. If we all walk away [from NPE], hunker down and put blinders on, the demise of the industry will be a self-fulfilling prophecy.
On the other hand, if we all attend [the show], strike alliances and share the latest technology, we'll find that there is life out there. We'll find new ways to make our companies more productive and profitable.
My father has supported his family in the plastics industry since 1952; I've supported mine since 1976; my daughter has been involved in this great industry since 2002. All three of us will be at NPE. We'll continue to support this industry and do everything we can to make it better for everyone.
I've always felt the way you make things better is to do something positive, together and for a purpose. I support the plastics industry and NPE and look forward to seeing you there.
Frigel North America Inc.
East Dundee, Ill.