by Greg Creason | May 13, 2016

Qualifying minority-owned automotive suppliers can receive tools and training necessary for increased capabilities and competitiveness.

SOUTHFIELD, Michigan, May 9, 2016 — In support of automotive manufacturers’ efforts to boost minority supplier development and industry participation, the Automotive Industry Action Group (AIAG) is collaborating with the Michigan Minority Supplier Development Council (MMSDC) to prepare minority businesses for direct part sourcing. A direct part supplier is one whose component, material, or service is part of the finished vehicle.

“The development of minority businesses for direct part sourcing is mission critical for OEM and Tier One suppliers,” says J. Scot Sharland, executive director of AIAG, an organization providing industry-developed standards, allied tools, emerging best practices, and training in quality, supply chain, and corporate responsibility. “MMSDC and AIAG share a singularity of purpose and speak with a common voice.”

AIAG is offering free memberships in its organization ($1,000/year value) to any current or prospective minority direct part suppliers with under $20 million in annual sales. Qualifying suppliers will receive the free membership for five years.

“We are making it easy for minority suppliers to participate in the AIAG experience,” says Nancy Malo, who leads AIAG’s minority supplier development strategy. Minority-owned businesses that meet AIAG’s sponsored-membership criteria will enjoy:

  • Free unlimited access to practitioner and enterprise knowledge self-assessments, guidance documents, best practices, and associated e-learning
  • Participation on members-only committees and access to industry subject matter experts in quality, supply chain, and corporate responsibility
  • Discounts to any AIAG Industry event and training
  • Free company listing in AIAG’s Supplier Connect Data Base

“AIAG can provide the tools and training to accelerate development of minority suppliers and deliver more predictable manufacturing outcomes at minimal cost,” says Malo, “but we need the collaboration of organizations like MMSDC that represent minority business enterprises.”

MMSDC will focus on advocacy, personnel development, and access to capital, while AIAG’s emphasis will be quality management systems, supply chain management, corporate responsibility, and environmental compliance.

“Despite significant effort, the industry has not been successful in building sufficient capacity and capabilities among minority direct part suppliers,” says Sharland. “We look forward to showing minority supplier businesses what AIAG can do for them. The automotive industry needs more minority direct part sourcing, and we need it now.”

AIAG is planning a June Lunch & Learn to introduce AIAG to MMSDC members. For more information, contact

About AIAG

The Automotive Industry Action Group is a unique not-for-profit organization where OEMs, suppliers, service providers, government entities, and individuals in academia have worked collaboratively for more than 30 years to drive down costs and complexity from the supply chain. AIAG membership includes preeminent manufacturers and many of their parts suppliers and service providers. Visit