November 18, 2015
What is it that makes Local Motors a truly local company? When we spoke with Jay Rogers at Celebrate 2015 he answered this question, and his answer centered on the fact that Local Motors doesn’t like to wave a flag of American manufacturing. In fact, according to Rogers, that’s a big misconception about the company.
“Sam Waltman got skewered when he said Wal-Mart, made in America. The reason is because his stock holders said what if America isn’t the best place to source the products people want to buy? It wasn’t about cheapness, what if I can get a better product from France? It wasn’t just an American company, it was a consumer company,” says Rogers.
He uses that as an example because it’s incredibly pertinent to the development of a business like Local Motors – one that focuses on crowd sourcing and co-creation with people all over the world. Since there’s literal, global input you would diminish the community’s voice by flying a flag of US manufacture over it.
Rather, you would tell people that Local Motors uses global input for the designs, and then designs them locally regardless of ecosystem or country. Local Motors is the name of the business for a reason: it’s the motor of a local economy.
“We provide 170 jobs and somewhere between a seven and 16 times job multiplier. For me, the idea of being a local manufacturer is so powerful. Being a US manufacturer is a byproduct,” says Rogers.
Beyond that, the intention of Local Motors is to bring technology to vehicles fast, and that’s a disruptive tendency by nature. People, after all, don’t buy a product because it’s disruptive – they buy a product because it’s bigger than itself. Local Motors offers this tech, but further, they show communities why it’s important to have as a part of their ecosystem.
Here’s the full video of our interview with Jay Rogers, and it’s fascinating. Make sure to listen to the Q&A at the end:
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