Courtney Hosts Summit to Strengthen Connecticut Submarine Supply Chain
June 16, 2014
More Than 300 Connecticut Companies Join EB to Learn More About Supply Needs
New London, CT—Today, Congressman Joe Courtney (CT-2), in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Middletown Export Assistance Center and representatives from Electric Boat, hosted more than 300 local companies for an informational summit on becoming part of the submarine supply chain. The event gave company representatives the chance to learn more about the needs of Electric Boat, as well as the contract process.
“The high turnout today is a direct effect of the strong submarine construction outlook for Electric Boat, and the work that they have done to build a robust local supply chain,” Courtney said. “I am pleased that so many companies in our state are offering high-quality components and services, setting our region apart as the Submarine Capital of the world. Connecticut’s exceptional defense workforce has put our economy on stronger footing, and will continue to be a pillar for years to come.”
“This is a great time to be a defense contractor in Connecticut. We are building the right things at the right time—those things that are critical to our current national security strategy. Connecticut will continue to prosper in the defense sector and this event opens doors for our Connecticut small businesses to become part of this enterprise,” said Bob Ross, Executive Director of the Connecticut Office of Military Affairs.
"We need to grow our industrial base and supplier base as we go forward," said Blair Decker, Electric Boat's Director of Material Acquisition, speaking to attendees. The recent 10-ship contract, he said, "creates some great opportunities for suppliers."
“It is vital that government agencies work with our major contractors to support the needs of the private sector supplier chain and facilitate these type of events,” said Anne Evans, Director of the Connecticut District Office of the Department of Commerce, which organized the supplier event.
“For companies that are aerospace-centric, this is a tremendous opportunity for diversification of our customer base and for doing business with a company that is here in Connecticut. It allows us to grow our business and create employment opportunities,” said Kevin Flanagan, of Flanagan Industries in Glastonbury.
Courtney, a member of the House Armed Services Committee and Vice Ranking Member of the Seapower Subcommittee, has worked to secure major investments in the U.S. undersea force. Earlier this year, the U.S. Navy and Electric Boat signed a 10-submarine, five-year contract that will maintain the two-a-year build rate for the Virginia Class and capitalize on efficiencies to save more than two billion dollars for taxpayers. The excellent performance of the EB workforce enabled Courtney to successfully advocate for this long-term procurement contract that demonstrates confidence in the timely, cost-effective record for Virginia Class construction.