October 2017

Manufacturing is critical to rural areas of the South

In 2015, manufacturing represented a 14 percent share of private nonfarm rural jobs and a 21 percent share of rural earnings, according to a report by the USDA that came out in the summer titled “Rural Manufacturing at a Glance.” According to the report, urban areas saw 7 percent of total employment and 11 percent of earnings come from the manufacturing sector in 2015. 


Chinese aerospace manufacturer investing in Alabama

Continental Motors Group, a subsdiary of Beijing-based AVIC International Holding Corp., will invest in a new plant and headquarters at the Mobile Aeroplex in Mobile, Ala. The site is where Airbus fully assembles the A320 jetliner series. The company will make aviation piston engines and parts in a new 250,000-square-foot facility. The deal is expected to create 450 jobs. 


Amazon asks for bids for new $5 billion second headquarters

Seattle-based Amazon wants a second headquarters and the company has put it up for bid. CEO Jeff Bezos said in a press release that he expects the $5 billion project to "be a full equal to our Seattle headquarters," where more than 40,000 people work. Some of the criteria to be chosen, according to Amazon, are communities of at least 1 million in population, an international airport and a "stable and business-friendly environment." 


The Best Cities in the South for Amazon's HQ2

SB&D has come up with its five best cities for Amazon's second headquarters:

Atlanta - Atlanta has the world's largest international airport, and several Fortune 100 companies are headquartered there. More than 5.7 million people live in the Atlanta metro and nearly 100,000 moved there last year. 

Dallas-Fort Worth - Now home to Toyota's new North American headquarters, along with many others including ExxonMobil and American Airlines, there is plenty of land and labor in the Dallas-Fort worth mega-region. Dallas-Fort Worth welcomed more than 140,000 new residents last year. 

Austin - Austin is a tech mecca with a vibrant labor base, and Amazon might want to take a look a the area, including the Hutto-Taylor megasite as well as San Marcos. About 58,000 people moved to Austin last year. 

Northern Virginia - Northern Virginia has a large young population and birth rates there are some of the highest in the South. You can go anywhere in the world from the Dulles International Airport. 

Northern Kentucky - Probably a reach, but Amazon is building its largest world air freight hub at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Aiport. The $1.5 billion, 2,700-job hub will be home to Prime Air. 


Kamtek opens expanded Birmingham plant

Kamtek, a division of Magna, opened the $60 million, 150,000-square-foot expansion of its automotive parts facility in Birmingham, Ala., in the summer quarter. The project will add 100 workers to the plant, which currently houses 850. The company makes aluminum castings for vehicles made by Mercedes-Benz, Volkswagen and Nissan. 


SAF-Holland expands in Arkansas

SAF-Holland, a maker of trailer suspension and axle systems, is investing $4 million to expand its Dumas, Ark., facilities. The company will add 65 new positions. 


BMW celebrates 4 millionth vehicle made in South Carolina

In the summer quarter, BMW celebrated the 4 millionth vehicle made at its plant in Greer, S.C. The plant began making vehicles at the plant in 1994. 


Brazilian manufacturer to open first U.S. facility in rural Virginia

Koinonia, a manufacturer of foam and tape solutions for the automotive, marine and heavy equipment industries, is investing almost $5 million in a new plant in Pulaski County, Va. The plant will house 40 workers. 


Texas port ready to be deepened

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Port Corpus Christi agreed to terms to deepen the port's ship channel in the summer quarter. The $326 million project will deepen the ship channel from 45 feet deep and 400 feet wide to 54 feet deep and 520 feet wide. 


PowerSchool to create jobs in Roanoke

PowerSchool, a leader in education technology platforms for K-12, is investing $1.8 million to expand its presence in Roanoke, Va. The project will add 96 jobs. 


Big manufacturing capture for Tulsa

Wisconsin-based Greenheck Group, a manufacturer of commercial ventilation systems, broke ground on a new facility in Tulsa during the summer quarter. The company plans to hire about 75 employees when the facility is completed in summer 2018, and up to 900 over the next 10 years. 


Company opens second Kentucky plant

WPT Corp., a manufacturer of nonwovens used in hygiene and filtration products, is opening its second plant in Ohio County, Ky. The $6 million investment will create 40 jobs. 


Chinese textile factory will consume almost all of cotton grown in Arkansas

Shandong Ruyi will build a $410 million textile factory in Forrest City, Ark. The project will create 800 jobs. The facility will process 200,000 tons of Arkansas cotton annually, which is about what is grown in the state now. 


Vehicle glass manufacturer expands in Virginia

Oran Safety Glass, a maker of specialty glass used in the manufacture of buses, military vehicles and trains, is expanding its Greensville, Va., operation. The $4.4 million project will create 55 jobs and retain 75. 


German auto supplier launching new operations in South Carolina

Isringhausen, a seating systems manufacturer, is launching new operations in Charleston County in Ladson, S.C. The company, which has 50 plants in 20 countries, will make seats and assemblies for the Mercedez-Benz Vans Sprinter model. 


Baxter completes Alabama plant expansion

Medical device company Baxter completed the $270 million expansion of its dialyzers plant in Opelika, Ala. The expansion more than doubled the size of the facility to roughly 400,000 square feet. The deal will create 180 new jobs. 


Insurer to create 1,000 new jobs in downtown Kansas City

Spring Venture Group, a Medicare supplemental insurance firm, will move into a largely vacant building in downtown Kansas City, Mo., to accommodate growth. The company expects to create nearly 1,000 jobs in the move. 


Aerospace manufacturer expands in St. Louis

St. Peters-based Seyer Industries, a maker of assemblies for the aerospace industry, is expanding its facilities in St. Louis. The company will invest $25 million and add 125 jobs. 


Film manufacturer to invest $85 million in South Carolina

Charter NEX Films, a specialty film manufacturer, will locate a new plant in Blythewood, S.C. The company will build a new 140,000-square-foot facility that will house 110 workers. 


West Virginia lands new chemical plant

U.S. Methanol broke ground on a new methanol plant in Kanawha County, W.Va., in the summer quarter. The plant will generate 50 new jobs. 


Manufacturer adding jobs in Arkansas

As a result of a partnership with Arkansas-based Walmart, Nice-Pak, a wet wipe manufacturer, will add 30 jobs at its plant in Jonesboro, Ark. The deal is part of Walmart's initiative to purchase at least $250 billion in additional products supporting American jobs. 


Now we know what Apple does in Austin

For years, Apple kept what its 6,000 employees in Austin do under wraps. In the summer quarter, Apple CEO Tim Cook visited the company's Austin facilities and said more employees will be hired in Austin. Cook revealed that about 50 percent of the Austin staff works in customer support and online sales. He also explained that about 15 percent are in engineering and another 15 percent in operations. 


Media firm to open office in downtown Richmond

Thomson Reuters, an international information and media firm, will open a new 10,000-square-foot office in downtown Richmond. The New York City-based company will create 60 new jobs. 


Another megasite planned for the American South

The South is certainly not in short supply of large industrial sites of 1,000 acres or more. Add another one to the mix, this one in Chesterfield County, Va. Right before the recession a master-planned community in Chesterfield that would have contained 2,449 single-family homes, 1,331 condos, 908 apartments and 470,000 square feet of commercial space was announced. Called Branner Station, the plan was nixed by the Great Recession. Now Chesterfield wants to develop the wooded property as a 1,700-acre megasite for a large user such an an automotive or aerospace plant. The site is near Interstate 95 and the Port of Richmond. 


Auto supplier expanding in West Georgia

Hyundai Dymos is adding 150 jobs to its workforce of 350 in West Point, Ga., near the Kia assembly plant. The $9.5 million expansion will add car seat capacity. The company makes seats for both the Kia plant and Hyundai's plant in nearby Montgomery, Ala. 


Smokeless tobacco plant expands in Kentucky

Swedish Match, a smokeless tobacco manufacturer, is investing $40.9 million in its facility in Owensboro, Ky. The deal will create jobs for 36. 


Austin, Nashville lead in job generation since recession

In the summer, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics released private sector job data for more than 300 metropolitan areas. During the last decade, Austin led all markets in private sector job gains with an increase of 38 percent. Nashville placed second with job gains of 25 percent. 


Munitions manufacturer to locate plant in Arkansas

American Marksman, a maker and distributor of ammunition, is locating a new advanced manufacturing facility in Searcy, Ark. The production facility will house 100 workers. 


Distribution center going up near Savannah

Home furnishings manufacturer Safavieh announced it will invest $60 million to build a 1.1 million-square-foot distribution center in Chatham County, Ga. The deal will create 200 jobs. 


Almost 4,000 employees to relocate to Northern Virginia

The General Services Administration has agreed to consolidate part of the Department of Homeland Security into a new headquarters in Prince George County, Va. Over 3,700 workers will make the move to Virginia. 


Has Alabama's ROI in the automotive sector paid off? 

By Michael Randle

In September 1993, the state of Alabama was highly criticized for the $253 million incentive package it gave Mercedes-Benz to locate its first plant in the U.S. in Tuscaloosa County. Alabama offered a package that was double that of what South Carolina had given to locate BMW just a year earlier. 

Then in 1999, Honda announced it, too, would build a plant in Alabama. . .this one in East Alabama. That initial package totaled $158 million. In 2002, Hyundai followed Honda with its own plant announcement in Montgomery. Alabama’s initial package to Hyundai was $234 million. 

Counting second and third incentive packages for expansions, the total Alabama has given out in site prep, training, tax breaks and other incentives is less than $1 billion for the three automakers. 

So, to more easily understand the return on investment, let’s eliminate anything Alabama could have received from the three automakers, including the attraction of more than 250 suppliers to the state, tax generation, multipliers, spin-off jobs and anything else that’s difficult to calculate. Let’s just add up the payroll of the three automakers just at their facilities since they began operating. Why payroll? It’s something everyone understands because most of us are on a payroll. 

SB&D’s estimated payroll since Mercedes, Honda and Hyundai have been operating their plants in Alabama is right at $12 billion. That’s a 12-fold ROI and that just counts payroll at the three assembly plants. What’s more, those plants will be operating 50 years from today.


Bus manufacturer expands Alabama plant

Canada-based New Flyer, North America's largest transit bus manufacturer, is expanding its plant in Anniston, Ala. The company is investing $25 million and adding 40 new jobs. 


Aluminum manufacturer investing $110 million in Tennessee

Sweden-based Granges, a manufacturer of aluminum products, is investing $110 million in its plant in Huntingdon, Tenn. to expand capacity from 160 to 200 metric kilotons per year. The company makes light gauge foil and automotive heat exchanger products. The deal will create 100 new jobs. 


Walmart to build new HQ in Arkansas

Walmart's headquarters in Bentonville, Ark., is a collection of more than 20 buildings built in the 1970s that are spread out across several different communities in Northwest Arkansas. In September, the nation's largest employer of 1.5 million employees announced it will build a new headquarters campus in Bentonville on a 350-acre site. The new headquarters will house up to 17,000 employees and will be built over the next five years. 


Georgia-Pacific to build plant in Alabama

Atlanta-based Georgia-Pacific announced in the summer it will construct a $100 million lumber production facility in Talladega, Ala. The $100 million, 300,000-square-foot plant will house 100 full-time employees. 


Japanese auto parts supplier to build new plant in Tennessee

Miyake Forging announced in the summer it will build a 45,000-square-foot facility in Hawkins County, Tenn. The bearings manufacturer will invest $13.7 million in the plant that will house 60 workers. 


Alabama lands truck manufacturer

Autocar, a manufacturer of a wide variety of trucks, announced in the summer plans to build a $120 million facility near Birmingham, Ala. The plant will assemble heavy-duty, cab-over-engine trucks. The deal will create 746 jobs.  


Manufacturer to create more than 200 jobs in Georgia
Meggitt Polymers & Composites, a manufacturer of environmental components, is expanding its facilities in Rockmart, Ga. The company, which employs more than 1,000, will invest $30 million and add 211 jobs. 


Rescare selects Louisville for new HQ

ResCare (the nation’s largest provider of both health and human services) and its 340-employee local workforce will move into a new headquarters building in Louisville, Ky., its home city.


Racing  and auto parts manufacturer adding ops in Franklin, Ky.

Holley Performance Products, a top name in automotive racing and performance parts manufacturing, will establish a $9.15 million facility in Franklin, creating 30 full-time jobs.


Hino Motors Manufacturing expands in West Virginia 

Japan-based truck maker Hino Motors Manufacturing will invest $100 million to relocate its assembly plant from Williamstown to Mineral Wells, W.Va. The company plans to purchase the former Cold Water Creek distribution center and convert it into a 1-million-square-foot truck assembly plant in Mineral Wells, close to its current plant.  The new plant will also house cab assembly, an operation currently conducted in Japan. The company’s president, Takashi Ono, said the move was necessary for growth and the addition of 250 employees.


Window manufacturer to expand Arkansas facility, add 123 jobs

Morfe Manufacturing Company is expanding its facility in Mountain Pine, Ark. The company will invest approximately $3.8 million to revitalize an old Weyerhaeuser property there and create 123 new jobs.


U.S. Silica Holdings builds frack sand plant near Lamesa, Texas

U.S. Silica Holdings, a producer of commercial silica used in the oil-and-gas industry and a wide range of applications, plans to build a second, $150 million state-of-the-art frack sand mine and plant in West Texas’ Permian Basin, about 60 miles north of Midland.


Keg 1 plans distribution hub in Temple, Texas

Alcohol distributor KEG 1 O’Neal will soon begin a $10 million project to expand its distribution center on 23 acres in Temple, Texas. The expansion will include construction of a new office and distribution warehouse and is expected to create 50 additional jobs for a total of 110 employees.


Nestlé Purina to create 240 jobs in Hart County, Ga.

Nestlé Purina PetCare will create as many as 240 new jobs and invest $320 million in a manufacturing facility and distribution center in Hartwell — the company’s first new U.S. factory in 20 years.


Infosys to create 2,000 jobs in North Carolina

Tech firm Infosys is creating jobs, including software developers, analysts and digital architects, at a new hub in Raleigh’s Brier Creek. Five-hundred people will initially be recruited, and will move into offices now under construction.


Cleco expansion will include 150 new jobs in Louisiana

A planned expansion by utility company Cleco will create nearly 150 jobs in the Alexandria-Pineville area.


Billion-dollar expansion for Mercedes-Benz in Alabama

Mercedes is spending $1 billion to make electric SUVs at its Tuscaloosa plant, as well as building a 1 million-square-foot battery plant, a logistics center and after-sales North American hub. Thanks to an earlier investment of $1.3 billion announced in 2015, the Tuscaloosa plant is currently being expanded to prepare for the production of the next-generation SUV including plug-in hybrid models. The expansion will create more than 600 jobs.


Toyota investing $374 million at five U.S. plants

Toyota Motor Corp announced a $374 million investment at five U.S. plants to support production of its first American-made hybrid powertrain. The upgrades at Toyota’s factories in Alabama, Kentucky, Missouri, Tennessee and West Virginia are part of a previously announced $10 billion in U.S. spending by the Japanese automaker.


Northwest Arkansas plant expansion to create 1,500 jobs

Simmons Prepared Foods announced it will build a new chicken facility in Benton County. The company plans to invest $300 million in the facility, which is expected to create 1,500 new jobs, bringing total employment at the operation to over 2,300 people by 2022.


Sabert Corporation bringing manufacturing jobs to Texas

Sabert Corporation will be celebrating 35 years in business next year with the opening of a new manufacturing facility in Greenville, Texas.  Approximately 125 new hires will support Sabert’s first North American facility to offer 100 percent compostable food packaging.


New plant in Greenville, Texas to create over 800 jobs

Family-owned Brakebush Brothers will build a new 315,000-square-foot chicken processing plant in Greenville, Texas. The new facility will be the second Texas location for Brakebush Brothers.


Auto supplier JTEKT opens new plant in Tennessee

JTEKT recently held a grand opening for its new plant in Vonore, Tenn. The plant means 100 new hires for the Japan-based manufacturer of driveline and steering components.


Volvo will boost U.S. investment to $1.1 billion

Even before the first vehicle rolls off the line at Volvo Cars’ new factory in South Carolina, the Swedish automaker has nearly doubled its investment to $1 billion and promised to build a second vehicle — the next-Generation XC90 — at the site. Volvo says it will spend an additional $520 million and add nearly 2,000 more jobs, bringing total employment to nearly 4,000, to its plant under construction in Berkeley County, 30 miles northwest of the port in Charleston.


Gulfport, Miss., bets on Octopus’s Garden to boost economy

Gulfport is hoping that alligators, river otters, dolphins and stingrays hold the key to revitalizing the economy of the second-largest city in the state. The city, located on the Gulf of Mexico, is selling $35 million in tax-exempt bonds to finance a public improvement project — the Mississippi Aquarium. The “state of the art” aquarium, set to open in 2019 with a $93 million budget, will join casinos and new restaurants in downtown Gulfport.


International Paper to secure future of Alabama mill

A major investment by International Paper is securing hundreds of jobs in Dallas County, Ala. The company is pumping $300 million into the Riverdale Mill to expand its industrial packaging operation and produce whitetop linerboard and containerboard. The massive facility outside of Selma is the county’s largest employer with more than 750 workers.


Ravenswood, W.Va., company to add 30 jobs

Niche Polymer will be adding 30 jobs and expanding operations in Ravenswood, W.Va., where it is headquartered. The company is a custom compounder and toll processor for engineering resins.


Thirty-one new jobs in Charlottesville, Va.

Astraea, a startup company that develops cutting-edge technology to gather satellite data, will invest $1 million to expand in Charlottesville.


South Carolina ports anticipate record growth, upgrades at Greer facility

The South Carolina Ports Authority will invest $5.3 million to upgrade the 50-acre inland port in Greer, part of $263 million in upgrades to ports statewide.


Kamstrup locates North American HQ in Roswell, Ga.

Danish manufacturer Kamstrup will create 52 jobs in the company’s new North American headquarters in Fulton County. Headquartered in Denmark, Kamstrup manufacturers high-tech water, heat and electricity meters.


Computer services company moves jobs to Gwinnett County, Ga.

CGS, a computer-services company with an office in Atlanta, is moving that office and its 350 jobs, to Peachtree Corners. The move will allow the company to expand to as many as 1,200 employees. The global provider of business applications, enterprise learning and outsourcing services, CGS (Computer Generated Solutions) outgrew its Atlanta offices, where it has been for more than 10 years.


Sir Richard Branson holds court at groundbreaking in Nashville

Billionaire Richard Branson was on Music Row recently for the groundbreaking ceremony of his $110 million Virgin Hotel. Branson said his airline, Virgin Atlantic, would also be interested in adding a flight from Nashville to London to compete with a recently announced flight from British Airways. 


OneTrust creating 500 jobs in Atlanta

As part of a $5 million expansion, OneTrust will double its office footprint in Midtown. The company, which has developed technology that helps businesses protect personal data of employees and customers, will create 500 jobs in Fulton County.


Bank of the Ozarks plans HQ in Little Rock, Ark. 

Bank of the Ozarks plans to build a new 247,000-square-foot corporate headquarters building in Little Rock. Approximately 500 employees are expected to move into the building when construction is completed in late 2019, with capacity to accommodate 800 to 900 employees.


NN Inc. moves global headquarters to Charlotte, N.C.

A Johnson City, Tenn., manufacturer will relocate its global headquarters to Charlotte. The $10 million project will also result in the relocation of 200 employees to manufacture industrial parts.


RealPure Bottling Company expands Mississippi plant

RealPure Bottling Company, formerly Shooting Star Beverages, is expanding in Magee, Miss. The project is a $19.75 million corporate investment and creates at least 45 additional jobs.


Duke Energy makes $30 million investment in battery storage 

Duke Energy is investing $30 million into the two biggest battery storage projects in North Carolina — a first for the regulated arm of the Charlotte-based utility.

“We feel the technology has improved, the price has come down, and we think there are some niche applications where battery use makes sense for the regulated utility,” said Duke spokesperson Randy Wheeless.


Bilstein Cold Rolled Steel opens new facility in Bowling Green, Ky.

A family-owned German manufacturer is beginning operations at its facility in Bowling Green. Bilstein Cold Rolled Steel expects to employ about 110 people at its plant, which broke ground in 2015. The company creates thin pieces of steel for a variety of industries. 


Brown-Forman’s investment in Louisville a double-edged sword

Last year, Brown-Forman introduced “Cooper’s Craft” Bourbon to honor the men and women who make whiskey barrels at its cooperage on the south side of Louisville. Brown-Forman has announced plans to invest $45 million over the next two years to upgrade the cooperage with new equipment for making whiskey barrels, but 70 of the company’s hourly workers will lose their jobs once the project is completed in 2019.


Nokian Tires breaks ground on $360 million facility in Tennessee

Nokian Tires recently broke ground on its $360 million manufacturing facility in Dayton, Tenn., Rhea County’s largest foreign direct investment to date.


Sitel to hire 1000 in Spartanburg, S.C.

Florida-based Sitel, described as “a leading global customer experience management provider,” announced it will hire over 1,000 associates over the next eight months due to an increase in clients in health care and financial services.


Three Savannah-area logistics firms to expand

The Savannah Economic Development Authority recently announced that three companies — ONL-RBW Logistics, Distribution Services International and ICON Health & Fitness — will expand their local footprints, bringing another 90 jobs and $42 million in investment to Pooler, Ga. 


Big Four accounting firm will add 150 jobs in Orlando

Ernst & Young says its planning a significant expansion in Orlando, and a move into the city’s tallest building, the SunTrust Center.


Charles Schwab to house 2,600 employees in Westlake, Texas

Financial giant Charles Schwab & Co. says its new campus now under construction north of Fort Worth could house up to 2,600 employees, more than double the number it previously projected. The $100 million complex, which is scheduled to open in 2019, will become a major employment hub for the company and can accommodate up to 5,000.


“Project Dancing Bear” picks North Carolina for expansion

Previously known by the code name “Project Dancing Bear,” a wood products firm has tapped North Carolina over South Carolina for a new 46-job facility. Marshville, N.C.-based Edwards Wood Products will be investing $30 million to open a sawmill in Scotland County, recently identified as having the highest unemployment rate out of all 100 counties for July. The company also plans for a second phase that will include an additional $20 million investment.


Accenture bringing 800 new jobs to Atlanta

Professional services giant Accenture will double its office footprint in Midtown and add 800 tech jobs by the end of 2020. The Fortune 500 company, which employs about 2,800 across several offices in metro Atlanta, its Southeast headquarters, provides management consulting, tech services and outsourcing. 


Atlanta-based UPS to hire 95,000 seasonal employees

For the fourth straight year, the Atlanta-based shipping giant said it plans to hire about 95,000 seasonal employees for the holiday season. The company needs 5,700 of those workers in Atlanta and 8,400 across Georgia. 


No holiday hiring for Walmart, just longer days for its workers

Walmart plans to meet its need for extra work during the holiday shopping season by giving existing employees more hours, according to a release from the company. Rival retailer Target has already announced plans to bring on 100,000 temporary holiday workers.


Toys ‘R’ Us hiring 10,000 for the holidays

Despite filing for bankruptcy protection, Toys ‘R’ Us plans to hire more than 10,000 part-time employees for the upcoming holiday season.


Textile manufacturer to grow South Carolina operation

A textile manufacturer in Gaffney is investing $6 million to expand its facility there. Hamrick Mills will use the capital investment to purchase new equipment for both of its plants in Cherokee County.


Borgwarner expanding in South Carolina

A manufacturer of automotive powertrains is expanding its facility in the Upstate. BorgWarner is investing $71.9 million and creating more than 160 new jobs at its plant in Oconee County, the third expansion to its Seneca plant since 2013. 


BorgWarner investing $20 million, adding 75 jobs in Mississippi

Automotive supplier BorgWarner is investing $20 million and adding about 75 jobs during the next two years at its Water Valley facility. BorgWarner bills itself as a leader in clean technology solutions for combustion, hybrid and electric vehicles.


Metalsa Structural Products expands in Owensboro, Ky.

Automotive frame manufacturer Metalsa Structural Products will be adding 113 jobs at its Owensboro facility as part of a $36.5 million expansion. Metalsa plans to produce a new line of stamped and welded components.


DowDuPont opens massive ethylene and plastics plant in Texas

The newly merged DowDuPont is opening its new ethylene and plastics plants in Freeport, making the nation’s largest chemical giant the first to start up a major ethylene complex along the Texas Gulf Coast.


Geico to hire hundreds and build $12 million facility in Florida

Geico, the insurance company owned by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, plans to create 300 to 500 new jobs and invest about $12 million as it expands its operations in Lakeland.


Cardinal LG expands Ocala production center

Cardinal LG, the nation’s leading developer in laminated glass, is expanding its operations center in Ocala, Fla. The expansion will result in more than 50 new, high–wage jobs, and a capital investment of $38 million. The state-of-the–art building will be located across the street from the current facility on a proposed 40 acre site. 


Port Tampa Bay approves $55 million expansion

Port Tampa Bay is moving forward with a $55 million plan to expand the Big Bend Channel after approving a participation agreement with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The move will make room for larger ships in the channel, which connects to the Tampa Harbor main channel.


Flooring distributor bringing 172 jobs, $6.4 million investment to North Carolina

Maryland-based Haines, the largest floor covering distributor in the U.S., plans to open a distribution center in Concord. The new facility will serve as Haines’ Southern hub and will house Haines’ entire portfolio of floor covering, installation and maintenance products.


Call center to hire 500 in Shreveport, La.

Representatives from Alorica, a nationwide call center company, will hire about 500 people from the Shreveport-Bossier City area. Those hired will answer phones from their homes.


Thrace-Linq expands South Carolina plant

Thrace-LINQ, a global supplier of fabrics for the textile industry and member of the Greece-based Thrace Group, will invest $9 million to expand its operations center in Dorchester County, S.C. The company will be adding a new production line and upgrading existing equipment to produce nonwoven fabrics used in a variety of applications, including geosynthetics, automotive, construction and floor covering.


AIV plans expansion in Houston

AIV LP, a Houston-based distributor of valves and actuators for the oil-and-gas, power generation, chemical, petrochemical, refining, pulp-and-paper and water treatment industries, plans to locate a 320,000 square-foot facility in northwest Houston, Texas.


Chinese automakers plan U.S. factory

Wei Jianjun, chairman of Great Wall Motor Co, said that the carmaker intends to set up a manufacturing presence in the US, in cooperation with two other Chinese car producers. “The three Chinese auto companies may test the waters by building a factory together,” Wei was quoted as saying, without naming the two other firms. A Beijing-based media group reports that three other Chinese automakers — Geely, Guangzhou and Chery – have all previously announced plans to enter the U.S. market. Geely and Guanzhou both said they were unaware of the plans, while Chery declined to comment. Wei described the move as “brand-building to sell cars in the US.” It also comes under a Trump administration eager to announce new manufacturing jobs.


Ingredion plans to locate 60 jobs in downtown Tulsa

An Illinois-based company announced plans to hire 60 people in Tulsa, Okla., to provide finance services. Ingredion makes ingredients for food, beverage, personal care and pharmaceutical products.


Conecuh Ridge Distillery to base operations in Troy, Ala.

The maker of Clyde May’s Alabama-style whiskey plans to consolidate operations in Troy, where the company will build a $13 million artisan distillery, rack houses and a bottling hub, as well as a tasting experience center designed to attract tourists.


Boeing’s partnership with DFW aerospace supplier to generate 950 jobs

The Boeing Company selected Triumph Group to be a major supplier for its training jet, bringing hundreds of jobs to the Dallas-Fort Worth area. Triumph’s flagship plant is in Red Oak — about 20 miles south of Dallas — and the partnership between the two aerospace companies will generate 950 direct and indirect jobs.


Kencoa Aerospace plans expansion at Georgia plant

Kencoa Group, an aerospace holdings company, completed acquisition of Heart of Georgia Metal Crafters, a tier-1 supplier of metal components for the aerospace industry based in Eastman, Ga. The company, which plans a major expansion in the Heart of Georgia Regional Airport Industrial Park in Eastman, will now be known as Kencoa Aerospace.


Pratt & Whitney building $31 million facility, plans 500 jobs in Georgia

A major piece of Pratt & Whitney’s expansion project in Columbus is about to ramp up, with the aerospace company starting construction on a 276,301-square-foot facility on the city’s east side. The price tag on the construction of the new facility for the engine overhaul business is $31.3 million.


Allstate could hire “well beyond” 2,250 in Charlotte, N.C.

Allstate Insurance Company told North Carolina officials the number of jobs it plans to create in Charlotte could go “well beyond” the 2,250 announced last month as part of an expansion project.

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