Marquardt Switches Inc. of Cazenovia is part of Marquardt Group, a global supplier of electronic components that is based in Germany and primarily serves the automotive, off-road, and home product industries. Marquardt has 21 locations worldwide, but its footprint in New York State is distinct.
“What we are doing in Cazenovia is a little bit different,” said Traci Schaumberg, Marketing Communications Coordinator for Marquardt Switches. “We are breaking into new industries, targeting the drone industry, startups, medical, defense, and others as a contract manufacturer. We have gone from selling our product solutions to selling our capabilities and services.”
Schaumberg, who holds a Bachelors in Video Production from the State University at Fredonia, started her career in television news. She worked for a few years as a producer at a local news station before deciding it was time for a change. She joined Marquardt in December of 2019, in a role that includes both internal and external marketing.
Schaumberg chose Marquardt because she liked the feeling she got from the company, including its corporate values. While those things have not changed over the past few years, just about everything else has. In 2019, the Cazenovia plant was heavily focused on the automotive and home product industries. The COVID-19 pandemic hit both industries, but particularly automotive, very hard.
“We had to look at our business model and how we could survive and still flourish and profit during this time,” Schaumberg said. “We realized we could sell our capabilities. Marquardt can do basically everything in-house—from product development all the way through the manufacturing process and mass production. We might as well be selling those capabilities to other companies that don’t have the same scope as we do.”
This initiative became known as Marquardt Partners. Working closely with the company’s business development team, Schaumberg has helped reach out to potential new customers through tradeshows, marketing materials, and public relations.
The company has had the most success in the drone industry, although Marquardt Partners is available to any company, of any size or stage of development, in need of a contract manufacturer for electronic components. Injection molding services are also available, and Marquardt Partners supports companies from product design through end-of-life.
“It is definitely a different business model,” Schaumberg said. “The company really transitioned into something totally new and different, which is exciting for me.”
Partnering with FuzeHub
Although Marquardt Partners technically got its start in 2020, it is really being launched this year. This includes a new website to promote its Contract Manufacturing services which was developed with the help of FuzeHub Marketing Services. As part of Marquardt’s corporate site, the current Partners page is easily lost among a wide array of products and services.
“It was information overload,” Schaumberg said. “I’ve been the driving force behind creating a site that will be regionally focused just on our services in Cazenovia.”
She said FuzeHub has been “a huge part of this whole Partners plan,” having helped Marquardt make several connections with potential clients.
Schaumberg is optimistic about Marquardt Partners’ future. The company’s business development team has already brought on more people and “I can only see that team expanding. I see us attracting more drone industry companies to work with us. We have a lot of other contract manufacturing opportunities as well in defense, medical, and other industries.”
STEMming the tide
As for her own future, “I definitely want to stay with Marquardt. It is so exciting with what we are doing right now, so I really want to help drive that momentum forward.”
Schaumberg also has an interest in the future of the local workforce and area youth. She is a big advocate for STEM education and often talks to students about the different paths available to them.
“I do a lot of facilities tours, showing people all of the really exciting jobs you can have in technology,” she said. “That wasn’t offered when I was a kid. You didn’t realize there were all these amazing things happening locally. I want to get kids excited about the careers that companies like Marquardt offer.”