PORTAGE – Ratner Steel Supply Company announced plans today to expand its operations at the Port of Indiana-Burns Harbor in Portage, creating up to 37 new jobs by 2019.
“Once companies choose to hire Hoosiers, they’ll almost always want to hire more,” said Governor Mike Pence. “After picking Indiana for a new facility in 2012, Ratner Steel experienced the benefits of employing a strong team of Hoosiers, who are among the nation’s most skilled manufacturing professionals. Today, one in five Hoosiers work in the manufacturing industry, and that’s a strong asset for companies like Ratner Steel as they consider where to grow and invest in their futures.”
The Roseville, Minnesota-based company will invest $8.83 million to nearly double the size of its facility at 655 George Nelson Drive in Portage. Construction is currently underway to add an additional 100,000 square feet and is expected to be complete by March 2017. With its growth, the company plans to improve its logistics efficiency by providing additional space for loading and unloading steel shipments. Ratner Steel produces 300,000 tons of steel annually and is currently operating at capacity 24-hours each day.
Ratner Steel’s announcement follows the company’s decision in 2012 to locate a facility in Portage – its only facility outside Minnesota – when it committed to create 30 new Hoosier jobs. The company has since exceeded its previous hiring goal and currently employs more than 50 associates in Portage as part of its team of 125 associates in Indiana and Minnesota. The company is currently hiring machine and crane operators in Portage, and interested applicants may submit an application in person at the company’s facility.
“Four years ago when we were looking across the country for a location for a new steel facility, Indiana quickly became the obvious choice,” said Steven Gottlieb, president of Ratner Steel. “From the state’s business-friendly environment to a location at the Port of Indiana that allows us to efficiently distribute to customers in many states, Indiana has provided the ideal backdrop for our business to thrive. That’s allowing us an opportunity to dramatically grow our facility in Portage today, and we couldn’t be more excited.”
Founded more than 30 years ago, Ratner Steel is family-owned company that produces carbon sheets of steel for manufacturing companies in the agriculture, transportation, general fabrication and service center industries. The company chose to locate its new facility in Indiana in 2012 because of the region’s manufacturing base, the port’s multimodal connections and extensive steel synergies as well as its convenient location for distributing steel quickly to Midwestern customers. In 2015, Ratner Steel was ranked one of the top 50 steel service centers in the United States by Metal Center News.
“We are excited to have a great company like Ratner Steel expand their Portage facility”, said Andy Maletta, director of economic development for the city of Portage. “Since coming to Portage four years ago they have exceeded our expectations and we are thrilled with their success. Ratner Steel has been a tremendous employer and partner in the city of Portage and will hopefully continue to grow their business here in Portage for many years to come.”
The Indiana Economic Development Corporation offered Ratner Steel Supply Co. up to $260,000 in conditional tax credits based on the company’s job creation plans. These incentives are performance-based, meaning until Hoosiers are hired, the company is not eligible to claim incentives. The city of Portage approved additional incentives at the request of the Portage Economic Development Corporation.
Indiana is a national leader in manufacturing job growth, adding 86,100 manufacturing jobs since July 2009. One fifth of all Hoosiers are working today in the manufacturing industry at more than 8,500 manufacturing facilities throughout the state, making Indiana home to the highest concentration of manufacturing jobs in the nation.