Vulture Capitalism in Supply Chain

April 12, 2022

Vulture Capitalism in Supply Chain
Hi all!

We love it when our customers succeed, and we are incredibly honored to be recognized as part of their success story. Thank you Zeptive team for the kind words, and thank you Forge team for connecting us!

A drone flying through Tesla's Berlin Gigafactory (and their massive tooling) is impressive!

Watch this in 4k. It's worth the 3min of your life.
This Operations Update is provided with support from:
The State of Manufacturing

As predicted last month, the PMI Index dropped in March.

Orders and Backlog took huge hits and there are additional massive price increases across all industries.
One item we have discussed a lot lately is Vulture Capitalism in Supply Chain. We specifically observed this during the past two years of the Electronics Component Supply Chain Crisis.

While most companies struggle with sufficient supply through authorized channels, there still remains a somewhat ample supply through secondary markets (component brokerage).

What's different this time around:
  • Most 'available' brokerage supplies (Genuine OEM products) have brand new 2021/2022 manufacturing date codes but come without traceability information (labels are manually blacked out), so the product cannot be traced by the original component OEM.
  • Many of the components are offered at and sell at insane prices. We have seen and confirmed with colleagues in the industry that some sell at upwards of 50x the typical price.

So where does this literally brand-new manufactured supply, now offered at insane prices, come from? We have a few theories but would love to hear from you.

Our monthly survey
Who offers/sells allocation components to brokers at insane prices?
Component OEMs
Large Corporations (Overstock / Obsolete Inventory)
Small Business companies (Overstock / Obsolete Inventory)
Component Hustlers
In our March survey, we asked how your company manages the flexible work environment.

The results of our readers showed that 26% worked fully remote, while 22% adopted the hybrid office model.
Hydrow raised $55 million in a Series D. The investment will be used to build its brand, cover marketing expenses, and improve product innovation.

OPT Industries raises $15M in a Series A round, with plans to develop 3D printed tech.

There's a new Massachusetts unicorn! ConcertAI raised a $150 million Series C round and bumped its valuation to $1.9 billion.
Massachusetts Clean Energy Center seed investments program applications are open now!

It's a two-stage program that provides up to $250,000 to clean energy startups. Click here to see how to apply.

The CleanTech Open Northeast (CTONE) accelerator applications close in less than one week.
Apply here by April 17th.

We are in our 5th year supporting CTONE and look forward to meeting the next cohort.
The MassChallange Early Stage Program to collaborate with industry experts to scale your innovation is now open. The application deadline is April 20th at 12 PM ET.

How to apply and more information can be found here.

You can also find our boss mentoring at MassChallange. Hit him up if you are a hardware startup.
FORGE announced another Cleantech Product Development Grant. This time it's for Female- and Non-Binary-Led Startups.

These grants are no-brainers, and we think the Forge team is doing a fantastic job to offer free money to help Startups grow their companies.

Apply here by June 3rd.
Forbes released their America's Best Startup Employers in 2022, and six Boston companies made the cut! #1 Commonwealth Fusion Systems, #8 Stavvy, #10 Corvus Insurance, #38 Immuta, #57 Starry & #83 Klaviyo

We want to congratulate our friends at Starry for hitting rank #57!
The best Hardware Startups in New England.
ePropelled created a new sustainability motor division to design and produce motors and related technology for the HVAC, pool and spa, water and wastewater markets.

Flexxbotics announced a new partnership with Robert E Morris Company (REMCO). REMCO will provide CNC automation solutions like Flexx Reference and Flexx CNC to manufacturers across New England.

Flux Marine raises $15.5 Million in Series A round to electrify marine outboards. Congrats Ben and the Flux team!

GenH was selected as one of the top 100 energy and mobility start-ups of 2022 by the SET100.

Nodar has been awarded a U.S. patent for its multi-camera 3D vision technology.

Tutor Intelligence demonstrated their collaborative robot performing pick and place of different sized and shaped materials at the PACK EXPO East.  

Urbx selects Celestica to manufacture an automated eCommerce system as part of the mass-market introduction and distribution strategy.

These bizarre new headphones have a built-in air purifier.

Dyson's noise-cancelling headphones will blow filtered air at your face. GermBlasters (Source: The Verge)

A Japanese company wants you to feel real pain in the metaverse with a wristband that will electrically stimulate pain in the wearer’s arm muscles. WhenTheRealWorldIsNotEnough (Source: New York Post)

The magnetic slime robot that could retrieve accidentally swallowed objects. MoveAsideVenom (Source: New Scientist).
Cheers and until next month,
Was this email forwarded to you?
Sign up HERE
Need a Procurement, Engineering, or Manufacturing Project done?
Interested in sponsoring this newsletter?