Nearwest  News
In This Issue
Annual Boat Cruise
Veterans Job Fair
HR Lunch and Learn
Grow Your Business
Export Seminar
Export Grant
Member Spotlight
1000 Jobs Success
Development Opps
New Incubator Co's
Member Announcements
Quick Links
Follow Us
                  June 2015      
ICNC's Annual Boat Cruise - June 26
Last Chance to Register!

Connect with other ICNC members on a fun and relaxing afternoon on ICNC's annual boat cruise. Enjoy food, an open bar, networking, and views of Chicago's amazing world-famous skyline as we cruise Lake Michigan aboard the Spirit of Chicago.


Friday, June 26th

Time: 3:00 PM - 6:00 PM (boarding begins at 3:30 PM)

Location: Navy Pier - Spirit of Chicago

Purchase tickets here.

Veterans Manufacturing Job Fair

Manufacturers are looking for the technical, mechanical, teamwork, and other skills that veterans posses. Whether you have manufacturing industry experience or are looking to gain experience, companies are looking for you. Positions are open to all veterans, so bring your resume and dress for success! The job fair is FREE to employers as part of the 1000 Jobs campaign. Interested employers click here

  • All positions are full-time and provide benefits
  • Manufacturers and manufacturing training providers will be present
  • Employers will be accepting applications and conducting interviews on-site

Tuesday, June 16th

Time: 9:30 AM - 1:30 PM

Location: Hines VA Hospital - 5000 S. 5th Ave. - Building 9 Auditorium

      HR Lunch and Learn - Interviewing Techniques  

As an employer or hiring manager, you have probably conducted countless interviews while trying to fill jobs. Were your interviews as effective as they could have been? The truth is, there is always room to improve interviewing  skills. Hear from ICNC Member Maureen Kennedy of Standard Equipment about phone, behavioral, and technical interview techniques.


Wednesday, July 15th
Time: 11:30 AM - 1:00 PM
ICNC - 320 N. Damen Ave.
Register here. Bring your brown bag lunch.
Grow Your Business Globally      

American Express Grow Global is a new program that provides valuable resources for U.S. Middle Market companies to help assess the risks and rewards at several stages of their exporting journey.


Gain insights from successful exporters and top industry experts throughout the program and participate in Global Connections, where you'll meet one-on-one with agents, distributors, government and industry officials, prospective customers and business leaders who are successfully exporting their goods and services. Click here to learn more and to register.


Thursday, June 25th

Time: 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM

Location: The Peninsula Chicago - 108 E Superior Street

Export Seminar For Metal Manufacturers      

The Illinois International Trade Centers (ITC's) and Metro Chicago Exports (MCE) invite you to attend a complimentary export seminar designed to create export opportunities for American metal fabricators and machinery manufacturers. Metro Chicago metal manufacturers exported over $11 billion last year. Is your business ready to export to high growth markets abroad? Click here to learn more.

Seminar participants will receive:

  • A global market report focusing on international opportunities for   metal fabricators and machinery manufacturers

  • Access to free and low-cost resources

  • Grant opportunities to help finance your export activities

  • One-on-one assistance to create a custom export plan 

Tuesday, June 30th

Time: 8:30 AM - 10:30 AM

Location: ICNC - 320 N. Damen Ave.

Register here.

Metro Chicago Exports Grant - Deadline July 31st     

Metro Chicago Exports has announced the launch of a Grant Program to help small and mid-sized businesses grow in international trade to meet the rising demand in emerging markets. The Grant Program, presented by JP Morgan Chase & Co., will award grants up to $5,000 to businesses throughout Northeastern Illinois to help cover costs associated with the company's next steps in going global including, obtaining international credit reports, developing an international marketing campaign, and interpreter service in foreign markets. Click here to learn more and to apply.

Member Spotlight: La Criolla

Avelino Maldonado began selling spices out of the trunk of his car almost 60 years ago. Months later he leased a small warehouse and established La Criolla Foods. His family has continued the business for over four decades and his wife and daughter now have over 85 blends and spices.


La Criolla recently launched 31 of its top-selling spices and seasonings in select Metro Chicago Target stores. Their products can also be found in Jewel-Osco, Walmart, Tony's Finer Foods, Mariano's, and Cermak Fresh Market. Due to customer demand, they will soon be launching an e-commerce site at that will offer an assortment of their top-selling spices and blends. They make wonderful gifts. Click here to learn more about La Criolla and their journey. 

       1000 Jobs Campaign Making a Difference
To start the
campaign, 1000 Jobs reached out to hundreds of manufacturing firms.
Thanks to this unique partnership among private business, government agencies, and community nonprofits, The 1000 Jobs Campaign offers job-seekers the opportunity to get the assistance that they need to enter fulfilling careers in manufacturing."

Employer: Smith and Richardson - "1000 jobs has been a great partner, they have made the recruiting process easier and have our best interest in mind."  
Read about how this campaign significantly impacted Marisol, a mother of two who until recently was unemployed and looking for work.
Development Opportunities      
CASE: Chicago Anchors for a Strong EconomyCASE fosters strategic relationships between anchor institutions (universities, cultural institutions, hospitals, government, businesses, etc.) and small businesses who can supply their needs. The upcoming manufacturing cohort will take place on July 16, July 30 and August 30.  Current CASE anchor needs include: machinery and equipment, printing and binding services, janitorial supplies, contract manufacturing, and more. For more information about CASE or to apply, click here.

10,000 Small Businesses:  Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses is a no-cost program that provides business owners with practical business education, a supportive network of advisors and peers, and access to capital. Through the program, owners will receive the tools and support to develop a customized growth plan to take the business to the next level. For more information and to apply, click here

Welcome New ICNC Incubator Company

Pasta Pappone! - sellers of handmade pasta using durum semolina wheat flour. Their pasta is only made with natural ingredients and can be purchased online as well as at select Farmers Markets.

Member Announcements

SOLID Development - A Chicago based product design firm located in the ICNC Incubator, announces new Contract Manufacturing services that can lower the risk and cost of a new product launch. They can  write the Quality Plan, source/manage the supply chain, and oversee final assembly and packaging in their own facility. No minimums. Contact Jim Orrico for more information.


Unison Warehouse Sale - ICNC incubator company Unison designs and sells modern home fashions, specializing in textiles and soft goods distinguished by bold color, unique pattern, and timeless quality.


June 27th - 28th
Time: 12:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Location: 2000 West Fulton Street


Design Harvest - Design Harvest will now be Grand Art & Design Festival.  The event is seeking local sponsors, exhibitors, fine artists, artisans, jewelry designers, clothing designers, crafters, and furniture designers. Contact [email protected] for more information.  


September 26th - 27th

Time: 11:00 AM - 8:00 PM

Location: On Grand Ave. between Wood & Western
ICNC Incubator Space Available      
Enjoy competitive rent, a thriving entrepreneurial environment, and immediate access to ICNC's services. The space shown includes sealed floors, sealed ceiling, and a private freight elevator,  Click here to view more available spaces.
For more info call 312-421-3941 or email [email protected]