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Richard Coffey
Richard J. Coffey '96 EMBA
Founder, KTT Enterprises

Developing Strategic Global Alliances

Name the product: It is ideal for applying cosmetics, dispensing ink and packing farm produce. It provides many creature comforts — such as cushioning your seat and your saddle. And unlike money, it actually does grow on trees ... sort of. Still stumped? Sleep on it (as your mattress-topper).

The answer is latex foam, the raison d’être of KTT Enterprises and its enterprising founder, Richard J. Coffey, a 1996 graduate of the UNH Executive MBA program.

Coffey orchestrated the creation of KTT in 2004 by acquiring the cosmetic and industrial line from Latex International, in Shelton, Conn., where he worked for nearly two decades. As president and then general manager at Latex International, he helped expand operations into Europe and Asia and grew sales more than tenfold. KTT Enterprises, headquartered in Hamden, Conn., and with facilities in China, co-owns an international custom foam manufacturing and supply company. For Coffey, creating KTT has certainly provided professional and personal satisfaction … but this is anything but a cushy job.

Coffey is hands-on in all aspects of the business: product development and manufacturing, sales and marketing, budgeting and operations, logistics, and supply chain management. It is demanding work, especially in tough economic times. The knowledge and skills acquired in UNH's Executive MBA program continue to serve him well.

Attending the University of New Haven has become a Coffey family tradition. During the 1960's, Richard’s father, Bill Coffey, continued his professional education in the UNH Executive Leadership Program. Years later, when UNH created the Family Business Center, the Coffey family again became involved with the University.

While enrolled in the UNH EMBA program, Coffey's family business was in a highly expansive mode. He was deeply involved in new opportunities in Europe and Asia. "Not only did I benefit from the academics learned in the classroom, but also from the shared experiences and knowledge from classmates and professors," he says. "This helped me to develop strategic global alliances with my own manufacturing business, KTT Enterprises."

After graduating, Coffey realized the value of the EMBA program and encouraged two of his employees to pursue their EMBA degrees. "I highly recommend the UNH EMBA studies for anyone willing to work hard to achieve their business goals," he says. "UNH is dynamic, has a global presence and continues to meet new challenges in today’s ever-changing marketplace. Do yourself a favor and check out what's happening at UNH."

Posted Spring 2010