Indiana’s manufacturing sector is experiencing an expansion boom.
During National Manufacturing Day Oct. 5, 22 companies—including several from Northwest Indiana— either announced plans to locate in the state or expand in Indiana. The combined announcements represent an investment of more than $154 million in Indiana and creation of 1,090 new jobs over the next several years, according the Indiana Economic Development Corp.
“Each day, Hoosiers across the state are developing new solutions and creating crucial products that are shipped to customers across the globe,” Gov. Eric J. Holcomb said. “I’m honored to proclaim (Oct. 5) National Manufacturing Day in Indiana, recognizing the 8,500 businesses in all corners of the state, and to join in celebrating 22 manufacturers that are committing to even more growth here, creating new opportunities for Indiana workers and their families.”
Indiana is home to 8,500 manufacturing facilities with highest concentration of manufacturing jobs in the U.S., supporting one in five Hoosier jobs, according to the state. Manufacturers in Indiana have added 107,300 new jobs since July 2009.
The state’s manufacturing industry is diverse, boasting the world’s largest RV production, accounting for nearly 80 percent of the market; the country’s largest steel production, making 27 percent of U.S. steel; the second-largest automotive sector in the nation by GDP; and a leading orthopedics industry, supporting at least 35 percent of the global sector in Warsaw alone, according to state estimates. Indiana also supports strong food and beverage, hardwoods, plastics and rubbers, chemicals and machinery and equipment production.
The 22 companies which announced expansion plans are growing across 17 counties, from southern to northern Indiana. Businesses from Northwest Indiana that announced expansion plans Oct. 5 include:
- Clayton Wakarusa (Elkhart County) of the Clayton Home Building Group, which specializes in manufactured and modular housing. In late 2016, the company expanded by adding a second facility, Clayton Wakarusa II, and upgrading its existing operations in Elkhart County. The new facility added more than 40,000 square feet of production and office space in addition to its existing 101,000-square-foot complex at 66700 State Road 19, Wakarusa. The expansion was completed in 2017, allowing the company to increase production. As part of its growth, Clayton Wakarusa II home building facility hired 120 new workers and has a goal to add up to 110 more positions over the next two years to its combined Indiana workforce of 320 employees.
- Fusion Wood Products (Elkhart County), manufacturer of custom wood trim, flat panel lamination and molding products, will invest $4.6 million to expand its Elkhart operations. The investment will include expanded wrapping lines, a new lamination line and new equipment. The project will bolster the company’s 68,000-square-foot facility on its 10-acre lot at 1600 W. Mishawaka Road in Elkhart.
- L & W Engineering (Elkhart County), a manufacturer of fabricated steel and aluminum parts, will invest $4.28 million to expand its operations in Middlebury, constructing and equipping a fifth 78,000-square-foot facility at its existing 250,000-square-foot complex at 107 Industrial Parkway. The expansion, which is currently under construction, will allow the company to increase capacity of its chassis stretch and modification business. As part of its growth, L&W Engineering plans to add up to 40 new positions to its current team and anticipates hiring for steel welders and fabricators, general assembly, and vehicle technicians in early 2019.
- Satellite Industries (Elkhart County), which manufactures luxury mobile restroom trailers in Bristol, will invest $9.6 million to expand its Elkhart facility and increase focus on specialty trailer manufacturing. The project will build an additional 120,000 square feet to the company’s existing 120,000-square-foot facility at 1686 Commerce Drive in Bristol. The company recently broke ground on the new facility, which will be complete by early next year. Satellite Industries currently employs 90 full-time workers in Indiana and plans to create up to 60 jobs by the end of 2018 to support its expansion.
- Vanair (LaPorte County), a provider of mobile power solutions, has invested more than $1.5 million to expand its state-of-the-art technology and innovation center, growing its campus to two buildings in Michigan City to accommodate the operations of Minnesota-based Goodall Mfg., which the company purchased in January 2017. Goodall Mfg., which is a leader in jump-starting equipment, officially moved its operations to Indiana on July 1, bringing its broad range of jump starters, air compressors, AC generators and heavy-duty cable and clamp products. The company, which already employs more than 140 workers at its Michigan City complex, plans to create 25 new positions by the end of 2023.
- Standard Industrial (Pulaski County), which manufactures components used by industry-leading companies in the assembly of their finished products, will invest $1.7 million in new equipment and processes to expand its operations in Winamac. Housed at the company’s existing 45,000-square-foot complex at 100 Michigan St., the expansion will include the installation and utilization of robotic press braking, precision part leveling and additional laser capacity. With the expansion scheduled to begin early in 2019, Standard Industrial plans to add up to 15 new jobs to its current team of 32 Indiana employees by 2020. The company is currently hiring press brake operators and experienced manufacturing personnel. Interested applicants can apply online.
Other companies which announced expansion plans around the state on Oct. 5 include:
- Attc Manufacturing (Perry County), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Japan-based Aisin Takaoka Co. Ltd., will invest more than $27.3 million to increase its manufacturing capabilities in Perry County. The company will retool its 380,000-square-foot facility in Tell City to add 15 new production lines to increase production of differentials cases, front knuckles and rear carriers. This expansion will create up to 26 new jobs and anticipates hiring for manufacturing operators before the end of 2018.
- Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems (Huntington County), a member of the Munich, Germany-based Knorr-Bremse Group, manufactures cutting-edge safety technologies, energy management solutions and air brake charging and control systems for medium- and heavy-duty commercial vehicles like trucks, tractors, trailers and buses. The Ohio-based company, which has operated in Huntington County for nearly four decades, recently invested $3.8 million to renovate, upgrade and equip its existing Modules Center on Riverfork Drive, launching two new production lines to manufacture a portion of Bendix’s vibration damper product portfolio. The location supplements the manufacturing capacity of Bendix’s primary damper production plant in North Aurora, Ill. The company also expects to invest $1.5 million over the next three years to open a fifth building that will expand its distribution capabilities as well as its module manufacturing. The Bendix Huntington campus includes manufacturing, remanufacturing and assembly sites, as well as Bendix’s primary North American distribution center. Bendix employs more than 420 associates in Huntington and expects to create up to 49 new jobs to support its most recent growth.
- Cardinal IG Co. (Steuben County), which manufactures residential insulated glass for windows and doors, will invest $4.75 million to expand its Fremont facility to house a new IG fabrication line which will provide future growth opportunities. The project will equip a new 58,000-square-foot facility at 301 E. McSwain Drive in Fremont. The company recently broke ground on the new facility, which will be complete by the beginning of January 2019. Cardinal IG Company currently employs 345 full-time associates in Indiana and plans to create 45 jobs by 2021 to support its expansion.
- Circle City Kombucha (Marion County), which produces probiotic kombucha tea, will invest more than $1.6 million to increase its Marion County production and distribution of bottled and draft Feel Good Soda beverages across the Midwest. The company, currently based at 1121 N. Arlington Ave. in Irvington, is finalizing lease negotiations to more than quadruple its footprint, renovating and equipping a new, more than 10,000-square-foot facility in central Indiana. The company plans to launch operations at the new facility in early 2019 and plans to hire up to 60 new jobs by the end of 2021 to support its growth.
- Delta Faucet Co. (Decatur County), which manufactures, assembles, distributes and sells residential and commercial faucets and other water-related products, will invest $15.4 million to expand its manufacturing operations in Decatur County. The company will renovate and retool a portion of its 360,000-square-foot facility at 1425 W. Main St. in Greensburg, where a new product category will be launched. The Greensburg facility supports Delta Faucet Company’s Indianapolis headquarters, which serves customers across the U.S. and in more than 50 countries. To support its growth, Delta Faucet Company, which employs more than 300 associates in Greensburg, plans to hire at least 39 new workers by the end of 2020.
- Driven Innovations (Kosciusko County), which builds components for the RV industry, will invest $3.6 million to expand its operations in Kosciusko County, constructing and equipping a new facility with at least 10,000 square feet at 300 East Chicago St. in Syracuse. The company, which was established in early 2018 by long-time Indiana RV industry executives, plans to break ground on the new facility in 2019 in order to increase its production of RV chassis/trailer products. Driven Innovations employs 13 full-time associates and plans to create up to 60 new jobs by 2020 to support its growth.
- IQ Fibers (Wells County), a manufacturer of high-quality cellulose fiber products from recycled paper, will invest $10.5 million to lease and equip the 40,000-square-foot former Sterling Casting Buildings plant at 1000 W. Wiley Ave. in Bluffton. The company, which offers insulation, sorbent and industrial fiber solutions for its global client base, will deploy nearly half of its investment to purchase and install state-of-the-art machinery and equipment at the facility. IQ Fibers recently added 10 full-time employees toward its goal of 36 and is currently hiring for production associates and a shift supervisor.
- Leentu Corp. (Marion County), the manufacturer of a unique line of ultra-lightweight pop-up campers, initially targeted at the mid-sized recreational pick-up truck market, is establishing operations in Marion County at 1811 Executive Dr. in Indianapolis. The company is committed to investing $1.1 million in the local economy over the next four years. As part of its growth, Leentu Corp. plans to add up to 18 new positions to its current team of two employees and anticipates hiring technicians, general office administration, customer service, sales and marketing positions beginning in 2019.
- Mervis Metal Recovery LLC (Perry County), is a recycling company and subsidiary of Mervis Industries, Inc., a full-service provider for iron, metal, plastic, fiber and all other recyclable products. Mervis will invest $1.2 million to establish operations in Perry County, purchasing and equipping a new metal separating facility at 11265 Solomon Rd. in Troy. The facility will have the capacity to process an estimated 7 million pounds of material annually, recovering and recycling approximately half of that volume instead of sending to a landfill. The company plans to be fully moved into its new facility by November 2018. Mervis’ growth plans include the addition of up to six new jobs in Indiana by 2019.
- Pike Lumber Co. (Fulton County), a primary manufacturer of kiln-dried hardwood lumber, will invest more than $6.8 million to expand its operations in Fulton County. The company will construct and furnish a six-chamber bank of dry kilns, a new warehouse and a new corporate office at its 80-acre campus in Akron. Operating in Indiana since 1904, Pike Lumber Co. is Indiana’s largest manufacturer and distributor of quality, kiln-dried hardwood lumber, serving customers throughout the U.S. and around the world. With construction currently underway, the company anticipates creating 10 new jobs by the end of 2021, filling general labor, supervisory and kiln technician positions.
- Rosa Vila Jewelry (Hamilton County), which was founded in 2016, is investing in its warehousing and production operations in Noblesville to expand its jewelry design and manufacturing operations with the goal of producing original and expressive jewelry at an affordable price. The company is supported by a team of five women. To support its growth and increase its customer base, the company plans to hire 27 new, full-time employees by the end of 2022.
- Sugarcreek (Wayne County), a diversified food manufacturer and one of the largest independent processors of bacon in the U.S., will expand its operations in Wayne County, investing $33 million in equipment to open a new meatball, chicken and raw and prepared pork cooking operation at its 418,000-square-foot facility in Cambridge City. The company, which opened this facility in 2016 to serve both domestic and international customers, already employs 400 full-time workers in Indiana and plans to create up to 149 new jobs by 2020 to support its growth.
- Tenneco Inc. (Noble County), one of the world’s largest suppliers of clean air and ride performance products for the automotive industry, will invest more than $5.4 million to expand its manufacturing operations in Ligonier, purchasing new pipe manufacturing equipment and welding machines at its 320,000-square-foot campus. The expansion will allow the company to increase production on its exhaust components and clean air products for the automotive, commercial truck and aftermarket markets. To support its growth, Tenneco plans to create 43 new jobs by the end of 2019.
- Tipton Mills Foods (Bartholomew County), a blended and packaged foods and beverage products manufacturer, will invest $4 million to construct and equip a new 30,000-square-foot warehouse and 10,000-square-foot building on its eight-acre campus at 835 S. Mapleton St. in Columbus, complementing its existing 45,000-square-foot plant. The expansion, which is scheduled to be complete by the end of the year, will allow the company to install new high-speed can and canister filling machines, increasing its blending and agglomeration capabilities and doubling its total production capacity. Tipton Mills Foods, which has 55 employees in Indiana, has already added 22 positions of its goal of 40 new jobs.
- Trelleborg Sealing Solutions (Allen County), a business unit of Sweden-headquartered Trelleborg Group, will invest more than $3.6 million to expand its Allen County operations at 2531 Bremer Road in New Haven, just outside Fort Wayne. The company will construct and equip a new 8,000-square-foot addition to its 73,656-square-foot facility to accommodate growing demand for its polymer plastics sealing product line. Plans to begin the expansion started in September. Trelleborg Sealing Solutions will add 40 new, full-time jobs by 2020.
- Tri-State Cylinder Head (Vanderburgh County), which specializes in high-precision cast-iron welding and machining, will invest more than $2.5 million to upgrade its 20,000-square-foot facility at 1712 Read St. in Evansville. The company will install state-of-the-art machining equipment and custom welding infrastructure to support increased customer demand for its cylinder head remanufacturing. The company has 35 full-time workers in southwest Indiana and plans to add up to 34 positions over the next few years.
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