SOUTH BEND – Schafer Gear Works Inc. of South Bend has announced a joint venture with Somaschini S.p.A. of Italy to produce gears for engines and heavy duty trucks in North America.
The new manufacturing plant will be located in South Bend and operate under the name of South Bend Gear LLC.
A 50,000-square-foot plant is being built on the Schafer Gear campus on Nimtz Parkway. Production is to begin in late 2011 at 50 percent capacity. Full capacity is expected by the end of 2012.
The new facility will employ 12 people initially and another 13 by the end of 2012.
“We are extremely excited about the opportunity this joint venture brings to Schafer and to South Bend,” said Bipin Doshi, president of Schafer Gear. “Somaschini’s long history of quality gear production and its proven technology complements our world-wide reputation for precision cut gears and precisely machined components.”
Somaschini has been supplying gears to the heavy duty truck market since 1992. The company was created in 1922 in Trescore Belneario, Italy, east of Milan.
Schafer Gear was established in 1934 and in addition to South Bend, has a production facility in Rockford, Ill., and Fort Wayne, Ind.