Cross-Trainer

Winning the battle for clients, sales, and talent.


Published:

At one time, MSX International, headquartered in Warren, was the world’s largest independent automotive engineering firm. In a lesson requiring perseverance, the company has evolved from an R&D house operated by Chrysler ex-patriots into a $400-million global player providing consulting, training, and staffing services.

“From that technical legacy, we now work on improving sales and services at automotive dealerships as well as offering customized training programs for companies like Johnson & Johnson, Whirlpool Corp., and Unilever PLC,” says Fred Minturn, MSX’s president and CEO. “It’s been a bit of a roller coaster.”

According to Minturn, one of the company’s most daunting challenges is winning the “war on talent” in China; the Middle Kingdom’s breakneck economic expansion has crimped the supply of engineers. “We work with OEMs to set up academic programs and bring in engineers to meet demand from domestic and international automakers and their suppliers,” he says.

Minturn says his past career provides a greater appreciation for R&D needs and product launches. He worked on tooling and prototypes for the stealth bomber and the Humvee, both on behalf of the U.S. Department of Defense, and he also was involved in an attempt to develop a “woody” version of the Chrysler K-car in the 1980s.

Today he oversees a staff of 4,000 employees working from 42 different countries. Most recently, MSX acquired Human Capital Development in Brazil to expand its employee-training offerings. Roughly 75 percent of MSX’s revenue is the result of international sales. Clients include the Big Three, Penske Corp., Fiat, and TRW Automotive Inc.

“The name of the game is building and enhancing customer loyalty, no matter the industry,” Minturn says. “It keeps your customers coming back, and they, in turn, tell their friends and family. That’s the bottom line for building any business.” db — R.J. King

Edit Module
Edit Module Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Related Articles

Stacking Up

Joe H. Schodowski, president and CEO of Shelving Inc. in Auburn Hills, sums up the company’s offerings succinctly: “We rack your world,” he says.

Virtual Anatomy

Researchers at the University of Michigan are taking the science of anatomy into the simulated 3-D world.

Silver Bullet

If Indiana Jones ran an antiques store, it would be in downtown Rochester.

A Matter of Taste

After earning a business degree from the University of Detroit Mercy, Nick Ritts wanted to acquire an existing restaurant. He conducted a search, and settled on Terry’s Terrace in Harrison Township.

PDA: Q&A Craig Erlich

Senior Vice President and General Manager, Detroit and Nashville, George P. Johnson Experience Marketing
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Most Popular

  1. Link Detroit Completes $21M Project Connecting Walking, Biking Paths
    The partners of Link Detroit have completed a collection of five projects connecting 20 miles of...
  2. Birmingham Nears 100% Occupancy as More Retailers Plan Openings
    Downtown Birmingham — which boasts a 97 percent business occupancy rate — is preparing for...
  3. Consumers Energy Tops Annual Goal Early, Invests $1B with Michigan Companies
    Consumers Energy today announced it has invested more than $1 billion in less than a year with...
  4. Long-Term Talent Supply May Threaten Demand for Most Jobs in Michigan
    Michigan’s top economic leaders today issued a series of findings that show the state is...
  5. Multi-room Escape Game Opens in Westland
    A live-action game in which participants have 45 minutes to escape a series of rooms by solving...
  6. Royal Oak’s Vectorform Provides Virtual Reality Headsets to Train DTE Workers
    Line workers and technicians for Detroit-based DTE Energy will be trained on how to handle...