100 IN 100: Touring Southern Indiana & Greater Louisville Businesses

When our 100 IN 100 excursions took us to the Ohio River, we visited a pair of family businesses, both third generation business owners that have fueled continued growth.

At Fred Smith Store Fixtures’ Corydon plant (the firm started and continues to operate a facility in Depauw, Ind., as well), the founder’s grandson, Jon Smith, leads an HR department that created an intern program to help cultivate talent for the business. While onsite, we learned that the firm’s intern program serves an essential purpose, as the company –which supplies laminated products for offices, the hospitality industry and health care industries – is consistently growing.

Jon brings an understandable appreciation for internships to his role: He interned for Conexus Indiana when he was a student at Butler University. The 2021 recipient of a Manufacturing Readiness Grants award, Fred Smith Store Fixtures is enlarging its Corydon plant and investing in new services and technology.

Over in Jeffersonville, another third-generation family member with Conexus Indiana connections is making a difference at Amatrol, a company that designs, develops and manufactures technical training systems for customers in all 50 states and 53 countries. Manufacturing Production Supervisor Jacob Perkins, a member of the Rising 30 Class of 2022,is credited with sharpening Amatrol’s operations and helping it achieve ongoing growth.

Also a recipient of a 2021 Manufacturing Readiness Grants award, which it plans to use to purchase a bending machine, Amatrol makes more than 600 products in Indiana, doing all of its work in a single production shift because the owners want the firm to be as family-friendly as possible. To support ongoing growth, Amatrol recently acquired a new 100,000-square-foot facility that will allow it to keep more supplies on hand and reduce its exposure to supply chain problems.

This post is a part of a series called 100 IN 100 – a look at Conexus Indiana’s staff visit to advanced manufacturing and logistics employers across the state. Conexus is visiting 100 companies in 100 days during the spring and summer of 2022.