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Latin America Business News

Ford Motor Increases Spending with Minority Owned Businesses

Ford Motor Company, maintaining a strong commitment to supplier diversity, is on track this year to exceed its annual goal to source 10 percent of U.S. purchases with minority- and women-owned businesses.

In 2009, Ford purchased $2.7 billion worth of goods and services from its tier one minority- and women-owned businesses in the U.S., down from $3.3 billion in 2008. The decline is attributable to lower industry volumes. Despite the decrease in dollar amounts, the level of Ford’s U.S. diversity sourcing in 2009 remained at approximately 10 percent. Ford’s tier one suppliers purchased $1.02 billion from minority- and women-owned businesses in 2009, compared to $1.2 billion in 2008.

These opportunities provided minority- and women-owned suppliers with new business valued at more than $150 million during a period when purchasing budgets and the supply base were being downsized.  Ford’s minority- and women-owned suppliers are also playing an important role in the company’s revitalized product line. For example, Ford Gonzalez Production Systems, a Hispanic-owned supplier, is expanding in Ford’s final manufacturing assembly area. The company, based in Pontiac, Mich., has won contracts for the next-generation Focus, as well as another product from Ford’s global car platform.

In the last year Ford also named four additional minority- and women-owned businesses to its Aligned Business Framework (ABF), a group of preferred suppliers that Ford has selected for collaborative, long-term relationships. The four are Piston Automotive; Saturn Electronics, an Asian-American manufacturer of electromechanical components in Rochester Hills, Mich.; Uniworld Group, Ford’s African-American advertising agency of record, based in New York; and Zubi Advertising, Ford’s Hispanic agency of record, based in Miami.  There are now 13 minority- and women-owned suppliers among the 89 companies in the ABF network.