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Maryland Supplier Connectivity Forum

With the help of: Maryland MEP


Textron Systems has been providing innovative solutions to the defense, homeland security and aerospace communities for more than 50 years. The company is a world leader in unmanned air, surface and land products, services and support founded on the combined expertise in our family of brands that includes Textron Systems, Howe & Howe, Lycoming and ATAC. Textron Systems harnesses the unlimited power of teamwork to solve incredible problems across seven specialized domains: air, land, sea, propulsion, weapon systems, electronic systems and test, training & simulation.

The Challenge

Textron Systems was looking for opportunities to diversify its supplier base and mitigate risks by connecting with local Maryland-based manufacturers in response to the ongoing disruptions of the COVID-19 pandemic. By localizing its supplier base Textron Systems hoped to decrease lead times and establish stronger relationships with suppliers to create a more resilient supply chain capable of withstanding future challenges. To help identify qualified local suppliers, Textron Systems participated in Maryland Supplier Connectivity Forum hosted by Maryland MEP, part of the MEP National Network™,.

The Maryland Supplier Connectivity Forum is one of the most powerful programs we have to strengthen our domestic supply chain, providing Maryland suppliers access to local OEMs and buyers that they might not otherwise be able to engage. We are excited about the potential outcomes and connections that will be made through this event.

— Mike Kelleher, Maryland MEP Executive Director

MEP's Role

The Maryland Supplier Matchmaking Forum began with an informational webinar to give Textron Systems and other buyers the opportunity to educate Maryland manufacturers (suppliers) about their purchasing needs and the requirements to become a qualified supplier. The webinar had 110 total registrants with more than 60 unique Maryland organizations in attendance. Following the information session, all participants were provided with private access to the forum resource webpage to learn more about buyer needs and purchasing requirements, as well as an application to schedule one-on-one meetings.

Following the information session, Maryland MEP received 25 applications from Maryland organizations and reviewed over 90 matchmaking requests throughout the screening process. Maryland MEP approved 19 applications and scheduled 43 one-on-one matchmaking sessions throughout the week of March 6th. These sessions gave Textron Systems the opportunity to dive deeper into capabilities, qualifications, possible synergies and steps to move forward in establishing supplier relationships. Textron was able to identify 8 new potential suppliers during the matchmaking sessions and has started engagements and quoting activity with companies who have completed the onboarding process.

Created May 4, 2023