New Product Development

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Hurst Motors uses TAAF matching funds to speed product development
Background

Hurst is a rare American success story in the world of small electric motors.

The company has been an integral part of life in Princeton, Indiana, since 1950 when a small family-owned tool shop first opened its doors.  For over 65 years, and three generations of the Hurst family, the company has been an innovator in the development, production and application of precision motors, growing into one of the top producers of sub-fractional motors in the world.  In 2010, it became part of the Nidec Motor Corporation and, because the recession had caused sales to stumble, that same year the firm joined TAAF program.

Approach

Hurst and GLTAAC together planned that a large part of its program co-funding would be used for NPD (new product development) – NPD was a key part of its history and a key part of its future planning.Hurst-2

When a large natural gas distribution customer approached the company and requested a new motor design powered by solar energy and controlled via satellite (meaning no need for field technicians), the firm needed outside help to develop the product on the schedule needed.  Hurst turned to the TAAF program and used $45,000 of TAAF co-funding for that project.  After an exhaustive search for the right expertise, Hurst commissioned a world-class motor design firm in England to help with the technical part of the design (yes, GLTAAC contracted with and paid a consultant located in England for our client!).

Results

The new motor, known as ValuDrive 2.0, was ready in 2014 for pilot production and fieldHurst testing.  In 2015 strong sales were recorded and the company had another “million dollar” product to help fuel its success.

We’re grateful for GLTAAC’s timely help and flexibility,” says Terry Greenway, HR Director for Hurst.  “It allowed us to bring the ValuDrive 2.0 to the market on time – without their help and the TAAF program co-funding to multiply our efforts, we wouldn’t have been able to do it.”