That’s right, manufacturing products made in Jersey for Jersey.
The Denville company helps Garden State businesses launch new products, automate their production lines and reduce their costs — so they can remain price-competitive enough to continue making things in state.
“The only way you can compete against cheap labor is with automation,” La Rosa said.
La Rosa calls it “reshoring” — and he feels the idea is gaining traction.
“(U.S. producers) can’t match the labor rates they see in Asia, but the automation is the equalizer: It reshores manufacturing, it brings it back here,” he said.
La Rosa said he is fighting a notion that automation takes away jobs. He said it’s just the opposite. By reducing the amount of U.S. labor a product requires, automation “keeps jobs here,” he said.
Tri-Power was founded in 1996 by three NJIT graduates who launched the company in the new-venture incubator on the school’s campus in Newark.
La Rosa is joined by Edward Laganis, director of engineering, and partner Robert Mastice, who runs the Tri-Power division that provides staffing services to the utility industry. The company employs more than 20 people and has annual revenues of about $3 million.
Tri-Power has worked for about 100 New Jersey manufacturers, including aerospace and electronics firms and medical device makers such as Stryker Orthopedics, Becton-Dickinson and Johnson & Johnson. And Tri-Power and its engineers are named on several of their clients’ patents.
Its success, however, has not come easily.