When Cliff Gabay gives a tour of his new high-tech facility in Nashua, it’s with a mixture of pride and caution. Where a visitor might see a computer screen or a glass beaker, Cliff sees another one of the proprietary secrets that has made Resonetics, Inc. one of the world leaders in their field.
“I wouldn’t want the Chinese to see this,” he says, only half-jokingly.
Cliff peers into a “clean room” where a technician in disposable overalls and Latex gloves drops a tiny medical component used in cardiac catheterization into a sterilizing fluid. The lab technician smiles beneath her paper mask. Before doing this delicate task, she had been previously employed – not by a rival manufacturer – but as a bagger in a supermarket.
Resonetics has grown from six workers in 1986 to 125 employees and continues to have robust annual revenues. Their primary business surrounds the use of lasers to micromachine medical components and devices. Their microscopic precision gives them an advantage over other manufacturers.
When Cliff wanted to expand his business, Resonetics was able to get a low-cost loan through a Community Development Block Grant from CDFA. The $500,000 was part of the financing to move Resonetics to a new, larger facility in the city.
As a result of the CDBG grant, Resonetics has committed to create 25-36 new jobs which are available to low-to-moderate income workers (Cliff’s goal is to add 103 total positions over the next five years). While some of the labor force will be engineers and PhDs, others will be blue-collar men and women from New Hampshire who will be earning a living wage for the first time in their lives.
“They’re good employees who get to do meaningful work. They’re able to earn a competitive wage and have benefits like sick time and vacation. We’re so happy to have them,” says Cliff.
As Cliff greets a gathering of a dozen of these new hires on first shift (with more coming in to work second and third shifts), he gets to see those smiles that had been previously hidden by the paper masks. It’s not just the thousands of surgical patients world over who’ve benefitted from the company. Cliff smiles back at people whose lives he’s played a role in improving.
Maybe it would be okay for the Chinese to see this.