Manufacturing can still be done profitably in Miami — at least on a small scale with a focus on custom pieces and fast turnaround. Outdoor furniture maker Source Outdoor started out importing most of its pieces when it was founded in 2008. Today, it manufactures about 65% of its products at its Miami headquarters. CEO and founder Gerald Shvartsman says manufacturing in the U.S. gives the company more control over quality, faster order fulfillment and the ability to easily customize cushions and finishes.
Stateside manufacturing offers another advantage, Shvartsman says. The company can keep a large variety of products in stock year-round. The strategy has been successful so far for the $10-million business, which has 70 employees. This year, it expanded with a new 10-person custom awnings division.