To Our Valued Customers and Partners
This letter is to announce that we will be withdrawing from IMTS in 2020. This decision in no way reflects on the value of this great show, which we pride ourselves, as one of the longest participating members, so we do not take this lightly.
I am sure the COVID-19 pandemic is consuming a great deal of your thoughts, as it is ours here at Methods Machine Tools as we make adjustments daily in preparation for possible worsening scenarios. Also, like others in our industry, we have been on the leading edge of taking corrective actions such as restricting travel, converting 70% of our workforce to working remotely, securing critical buildings which house our spare parts and production facilities, all in an effort to stay open while protecting our employees.
In the last two weeks, we have received dozens of letters from customers, citing the CISA, Department of Homeland Security Essential Critical Infrastructure letter. Like others in our industry, we are an essential support supplier for Critical Manufacturing and have been required to keep our production, service and parts operations open. As Jim Smith, the President and CEO of NRL whose firm supplies ventilator components put it, “you are now on the front line of this fight with us!”
In total, we have received dozens of emergency orders for machines and production solutions to build ventilators, parts for other critical ICU medical instruments, and equipment to make more masks. Our production site is, therefore, fully operational, and given our backlog for critical customers, I expect it will stay open throughout this crisis while we maintain the highest levels of safety for our employees to manage through this. We have taken the additional steps to move inventory around the country for better access to critical customer builds already in process, so that we can complete those in a timely manner. We also anticipate we will get similar additional orders, to the extent the crisis gets worse, and we will stay prepared to assist our customers if that happens.
With the current situation, I see no way to complete the work required for IMTS, nor do I see us changing our priorities to make time over the next few months. The scientific statistics are humbling on the likely progression of the virus here in North America, and to think we are coming out of this quickly is far from realistic.
Given all of this, it seems unconscionable to me to continue to have a conflict of priorities and thus we will be withdrawing from this year’s IMTS event. I have to ensure everyone working at Methods now focuses on what matters the most to our country. I know our builders in Japan fully support our decision and are proud of how their equipment is being used to fight this pandemic and they too are focused on supporting us in this global crisis.
Wishing you the best as we all strive to keep our employees, customers and our nation the priority during these challenging times.
Mark Wright, President & CEO
Methods Machine Tools, Inc.