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Starrett goes private

The lower class pay zero Federal Income Tax. They have no tax burden. In fact the bottom 50 %. Did you process that? The bottom FIFTY PERCENT. HALF THE POPULATION. Pay ZERO Federal Income tax. Many get a negative tax. It's called the Earned Income Tax Credit. It's free money from the rest of us to people who pay zero taxes.
Just curious, what does this have to do with a measuring tool company?
 
Just curious, what does this have to do with a measuring tool company?
Not much, but if you want to understand postings, you have to go back and read the entire thread. Threads take on a life of their own and often wander to side issues. Just like if you are in a bar drinking with friends and chewing the fat.
 
Watchd The vid......doesnt seem very hopeful to me ..........unless everyone got the day off ,then there were only a handfull of workers .....one robot ,as far as I could see ......and other production in small lots on manual machines.
 
This plant is pretty big, so even though it's sparsely populated there's a lot going on over all. I spent almost 4 hours walking around the complex and didn't even see most of the areas shown in this video. A realtime display of metrics I think said that this specific plant brought in $5M the month I was there.

I guess theoretically the company could move to a smaller campus and pour a bunch of money into fancy new machines, but I'm not sure that would work any better for their very broad mix of products. They'd waste oodles of time on setup for each part, not to mention all the risk and cost inherent in a move. Some of the "manual" machines are in fact automated, like I saw an old "manual" horizontal mill running lights out because they had rigged it up with air cylinders, autofeed, and a robot for unloading. It was doing 1 op on a tiny bracket for inside a dial indicator. It will be interesting to see how the new owner approaches this.

One thing I didn't realize before touring is that they seem to make a significant number of custom gages, micrometers, and indicators like for checking ice cream container lids and turbine blades.

There's something to be said for being an old company with a fairly static line of products where you're making money on a facility, equipment, and engineering that's already paid for. Probably also a nice place to work since you get some space.
 
There's something to be said for being an old company with a fairly static line of products where you're making money on a facility, equipment, and engineering that's already paid for.
Not to wall street, unfortunately. I'm not sure why they would ever be a public company, then being sold to a bunch of tomb raiders is .... well, we've seen that show before.

Nice video tho. It was interesting that everyone working there is also an antique :-) and they don't seem to be in a big rush, volume must be pretty low .... athole must be pretty small because if those buildings were in any larger city, starrett would have been put in the grave years ago and those buildings either torn down or remodelled into some sort of tourist trap-slash-upscale yuppy wine bar/restaurant/health club complex. The property is worth a lot more than the company.

Uh-oh.
 
It was interesting that everyone working there is also an antique :-)
Yeah I met several guys who've been there 3 or 4 decades, but also some youngsters in their 20's or 30's.
and they don't seem to be in a big rush, volume must be pretty low
Right: about $5M / month it seems.
.... athole must be pretty small because if those buildings were in any larger city, starrett would have been put in the grave years ago
It's a town of 9,000. Maybe in another hundred years the wine bar pet spa lofts will be a good idea. Until then it seems like they're going to have to make money in a grittier way.
 
It's a town of 9,000. Maybe in another hundred years the wine bar pet spa lofts will be a good idea. Until then it seems like they're going to have to make money in a grittier way.
I hope so. To a lot of us here, this is the kind of thing that makes a worthwhile society.

And then there's others who believe in money money money, nothing else matters. Unfortunately ....
 
I hope so. To a lot of us here, this is the kind of thing that makes a worthwhile society.

And then there's others who believe in money money money, nothing else matters. Unfortunately ....

You got me curious, and so I looked up the private equity company that bought Starrett. They're from Kentucky and by the looks of it they're into manufacturing:

https://middleground.com/companies/
 
by the looks of it they're into manufacturing:
Beg to differ .... "Our hands-on operational approach, combined with strategic third-party resources, jointly help to benefit a business and position it for sale as a market-leading company in its field."

It appears that they are into making a place look good so they can sell it at a profit. How they make it look good and to whom they later sell it and what happens afterwards, none of those things are usually healthy.

Once you get money-men in charge, there's only one way for a manufacturing company to go .... do you know who is a good example of what to do in US manufacturing ? Gleason. They went public, saw where that was going to go, bought it all back and re-privatized. Public companies in the US have no chance whatsoever. Lloyd and Jamie would sell their moms for a nickel, if they could get that much.
 
It appears that they are into making a place look good so they can sell it at a profit. How they make it look good and to whom they later sell it and what happens afterwards, none of those things are usually healthy.
Right that's what private equity firms do. I'm not saying these banker types are saints. There's a good chance they'll load Starrett down with debt and that could kill it. But like you say, Starrett being public wasn't that great either.

The tea leaves would indeed be more promising if the Starrett family took it private rather than the Kentucky bankers. However, it also doesn't look like the bankers are in the yuppification business. Like any decent parasite it's in their best interest to keep the host alive awhile longer. That's what gives me hope.
 
Like any decent parasite it's in their best interest to keep the host alive awhile longer. That's what gives me hope.
This is exactly the argument that Alan Greenspan, Larry Summers, Richard Rubin used. And we all know where that ended up.

Oh wait, no I'm wrong ! It was ten people who got cheap loans under one a them affirmative action programs, yup ! the fucking asshole thief bankers had nothing to do with it, they were victims of a federal program, unh-hunh ! I apologize profusely for that wrong thinking !
 
I was surprised by how good the exterior of the buildings look ........Id think a lot had been spent on building maintenance , may be a good sign.
Nothing spent on maintenance over the years. in 35 years I saw them repaint the Starrett sign on top of the building once. Its a Brick building that needs little to no maint.

The building next door was Union Twist Drill which left in 1985 to avoid the unionization. It took 35 years before it became a Marijuana Grow Facility and sold for 20 mill after upgrades were done.

The median income in the town is Disability and S.S. average payments. Discount Grocery stores and second hand stores line the town. Methadone/Suboxone clinics all over.
 
The median income in the town is Disability and S.S. average payments. Discount Grocery stores and second hand stores line the town. Methadone/Suboxone clinics all over.

Unfortunately this is becoming more commonplace in towns all across America. Especially in poor areas of Appalachia and the south.

Sad really. All the factories went away, all the mines and mills closed down, and this is what we have left.

Some "high-tech service economy", eh?

ToolCat
 
Some "high-tech service economy", eh?
It is. You just misunderstood. There's people out there buying $700 pocket knives now and houses cost a million plus. That wasn't true in 1975. The "high tech service economy" has been great - for a certain group of people.

We just aren't it.

When they said "service economy" everybody thought of a guy sitting at a desk smoking a cigar talking on the phone. But what they meant was, washing toilets.
 
Part two of the factory tour dropped today:
Some window boxes with flowers would help that place a whole lot and not cost so much. It looks really shabby and rundown :(

edit: better than the first one - worth watching, for sure :) but one bitch -- how come we got what seemed like an hour of watching parts tumble but only a thirty-second flyover of the instrument gear cutting !!! One is a high-precision, touchy technical operation on fine swiss machinery while the other is dragging pieces across rocks ! c'mon dood !
 
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edit: better than the first one - worth watching, for sure :) but one bitch -- how come we got what seemed like an hour of watching parts tumble but only a thirty-second flyover of the instrument gear cutting !!! One is a high-precision, touchy technical operation on fine swiss machinery while the other is dragging pieces across rocks ! c'mon dood !
New to Abom, huh? You can thank the guy giving the tour for keeping it moving or it would have been an hour contemplating the wonders of the water fountain. 🤣
 








 
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