A Rochester Hills staffing and training company will build a workforce training center in Afghanistan to help give people there "a means to earn a living," its CEO said this week.
TTi Global, which has had its headquarters in Rochester Hills since 1986, was recently selected as one of 12 U.S. companies to participate in a Department of Commerce trade mission to Kabul, Afghanistan, according to a news release posted by the department. TTi was one of two Michigan companies to participate in the mission; Serenus Johnson Portables in Bay City was the other.
"It is a source of great pride to have represented Michigan and our state's corporate community on the mission to Afghanistan," said Lori Blaker, TTi Global CEO, in the press release. Blaker was in high school in 1976 when her parents, Shirley & John Brzezinski, founded the company in 1976 in their home, according to background on the company's website.
"Traveling on a mission of this magnitude, which encompasses significant international trade implications, is an incredible responsibility to our nation and state."
The mission spurred Blaker to make plans to start a workforce development program there.
"Providing people in underdeveloped regions with the means to earn a living gives them hope for survival and the ability to create a better life," Blaker said. "TTi is committed to this belief and we know that our network and proven experience can be put to use in some of the most difficult markets in the world, like Afghanistan."
According to a report Wednesday in Crain's Detroit Business, TTi will invest about $500,000 to establish the program; it will send 20 trainers from Michigan. Because of the low cost of living in Afghanistan, the center itself will cost only about $20,000 to build.
TTi Global employs more than 1,350 people in 18 countries, including China, Thailand, Japan, Mexico and Brazil. The company provides technical training, market research, consulting and training for automotive and other companies.