Maker’s Row was launched in November 2012 and has already been working with thousands of businesses to boost domestic manufacturing. (Originally, Menendez says Brooklyn-based Maker’s Row was funded by angel investors and started off through the Brooklyn Beta Summer Camp.)

Maker’s Row offers a kind of proto-Alibaba for U.S. businesses. Those who are in the market for either materials or factories to execute a product can go to the site, where they can search by category (currently these include ideation, pattern-making, materials, sample-making, tooling and production) or keyword (below I’ve typed in “zipper”) and you get in return a selection of results, laid out in a visual, grid-style pattern so that you can start looking a bit closer and refining.

Indeed, just as Uber has done with car services, or Airbnb has done with finding a place to stay when you’re visiting a city, Maker’s Row has applied new solutions to old problems — the call to action that has stuck in my mind for months now after hearing David Sacks describe it last year. (To add to that, this is another example of Paul Graham’s suggestion that startups making things for other startups is supremely useful.) As 42 Floors brought a new kind of slick quality to presenting office space rentals online, for many of the factories and parts producers in question, this will be their first foray into introducing their products and services in such a way.

To learn more about Maker’s Row, visit:

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