SEED Selects Distron Corporation as “Small Business of the Year” for 2015


The South Eastern Economic Development (SEED) Corporation has selected Distron Corporation of North Attleborough, Ma. as the “Small Business of the Year” for 2015. The award will be presented at SEED’s 33rd Annual Meeting at 5:30 pm on Thursday, November 19 at White’s of Westport in Westport, Ma.

“We are very pleased to present our Small Business of the Year award to Distron Corporation, a family owned business founded by a veteran of the U.S. Navy, which over the last 45 years has grown to nearly $20 million in sales and 100 employees,” stated Maria Gooch-Smith, SEED’s executive director.

“Distron Corporation provides an excellent example of entrepreneurship, and sound management by a father and son,” stated Gooch-Smith. The business was established in 1970 by Robert G. Donovan, the father. The company’s president since 2010 is Robert H. Donovan, the son.

SEED’s Nominating Committee selected Distron Corporation from a pool of 400 candidates. SEED’s criteria included enhancement of the region’s economy through job creation, and financial performance.

Distron brings 45 years of manufacturing experience to Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM) who require high quality circuit board and electro-mechanical assemblies. Their operation and systems are tailored to support industrial products and include turnkey manufacturing from prototype to production along with value added services like design for manufacturing and box build assembly.

Distron is ISO 9001 and ISO 13485 certified, and provides services to the medical, military, industrial, cleantech and LED lighting industries. This year, the company became an Apple authorized “Made for iPhone, iPad, iPod (MFi)” manufacturer, and is offering extensive electronic contract manufacturing for third party Apple devices.

The MFi license is a symbol of high quality and provides Distron with the opportunity to work in the production and manufacturing of some of the world’s most popular electronic devices.

In 2011, SEED provided Distron Corporation with a $384,000 loan under the SBA 504 Program in conjunction with financing from Bank of Canton for a total building project of $945,000. Distron undertook a 12,500 square foot addition to their 25,000 square foot manufacturing facility in North Attleborough, Ma. which provided additional space for growth and job creation.

The building expansion and additional equipment purchases enabled Distron to increase its Surface Mount Technology (SMT) production for circuit board assembly. This new capacity allowed the company to expand its services into the medical, military and LED lighting industries, and eventually become an Apple authorized MFi manufacturer.

Robert H. Donovan stated that “With expanded manufacturing space, the acquisition of new automated SMT equipment, and the strategic hiring of additional employees, Distron has strengthened its position as a New England based contract manufacturer. Our entire team looks forward to working toward increased sales and future growth.”

In addition to the “Small Business of the Year,” SEED will present the “Start-Up Small Business of the Year” to the Learning Garden, Inc. of Warwick, RI, and the “Banker of the Year” to the lender in the region who has participated in the largest amount of loans with SEED, and exemplifies the spirit of assistance to small businesses.

The guest speaker at SEED’s Annual Meeting, Seth Goodall, the New England Regional Administrator for the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), will be assisting with the award presentations.

At the meeting, SEED members will vote on a slate for officers, directors and members for 2015. The slate for SEED Officers includes: Gerard Nadeau, Chair (Rockland Trust Company); Richard Shafer, Vice Chair (Taunton Development Corporation); Jennifer Menard, Vice Chair (Bristol Community College); Lorraine Travers, CPA, Treasurer; Robert Reisner, Assistant Treasurer (Cape Cod Five Cents Savings Bank); William Lewis, Clerk (Bristol County Savings Bank); and Wayne Carvalho, Assistant Clerk (First Citizens Federal Credit Union).

In 2015, under all its programs, SEED made 77 small business loans totaling $22.1 million and creating 344 new jobs,” explained Gooch-Smith.  She added that SEED’s total current active portfolio of small business loans is $105 million.

SEED is a non-profit corporation certified in late 1982 by the SBA.  Under all its loan programs, SEED provides financing ranging from a $1,000 micro loan to a  $5.5 million SBA 504 loan to small businesses in Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

SEED’s directors and members are community leaders who represent small businesses, financial institutions, local officials and community organizations.  Members meet on an annual basis to elect a board of directors and officers.  For more information about the Annual Meeting and SEED’s programs call 508-822-1020 or visit

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