FRANKFORT, Ky. — WABCO USA LLC plans to triple its employment as it reinvests over $3 million in the distribution portion of its heavy duty truck parts manufacturing and warehousing facility in Hebron, Gov. Andy Beshear announced Thursday.
“I want to thank WABCO USA for reinvesting in our state and planning to add 123 new, full-time jobs,” Beshear said. “This project speaks to sectors where Kentucky stands out nationally – in both the automotive and distribution-and-logistics industries – and for good reasons. Our central location within North America’s auto manufacturing belt, our experienced workforce and our deep roots in these industries all mean WABCO’s expansion is well placed and will be a boon for Northern Kentucky for years to come.”
WABCO’s investment will boost the company’s retail, aftermarket and original equipment manufacturer business, while improving efficiency to meet increased demand. The investment includes new equipment to enable increased volume and broader distribution of WABCO products throughout the U.S., Canada and Mexico. Company leaders anticipate work on the project will begin this month and be completed by spring 2020.
WABCO currently employs 77 people in Hebron.
“To ensure that our North American customers have seamless access to WABCO’s comprehensive product and service platform, we are dramatically expanding our aftermarket team and product distribution infrastructure in the region. This will result in a superior customer experience for OE service providers, aftermarket parts distributors and fleets,” said Jon Morrison, president, WABCO Americas. “We appreciate the strong support of the Commonwealth of Kentucky and look forward to our continued efforts to serve the commercial vehicle industry while supporting economic development in the region.”
WABCO USA is a subsidiary of WABCO Holdings Inc., whose offices are located in Auburn Hills, Mich. WABCO operates various business units serving commercial vehicle manufacturers, fleet operators and aftermarket customers. WABCO’s roots date back more than 150 years, when the company operated as Westinghouse Air Brake Co. The company currently operates 27 manufacturing locations that serve 40 countries around the globe. Products include electronic and active braking systems, aerodynamic and stability systems, suspension systems, transmission automation systems and fleet management systems. WABCO employs approximately 14,200 people worldwide.
The commonwealth’s automotive industry includes four OEM assembly plants and more than 500 supplier facilities statewide. The industry employs more than 101,000 people. Motor vehicles and parts also rank among the state’s top exports and Kentucky leads the nation in production of new passenger vehicles per-capita.
Nearly 550 logistics facilities operate in Kentucky, with 75,000 existing and announced jobs. Located within a day’s drive of 65 percent of the U.S. population, Kentucky is a premier location for logistics and distribution businesses of any size. Each day, more than 2.1 million packages are processed at Kentucky’s logistics hubs.
Rep. Kim Banta, R-Fort Mitchell, said WABCO adds to the recent economic success of the region.
“I would like to welcome WABCO USA to our community, this is a great announcement and their investment is proof of what we already know – that Northern Kentucky is a great place to grow your business,” Banta said.
Boone County Judge-Executive Gary Moore expressed gratitude for the company’s investment and job creation.
“WABCO is making a significant investment and creating a high number of good-paying advanced manufacturing jobs at its Hebron location,” Moore said. “I thank the company for its commitment to growth and the Northern Kentucky community.”
Lee Crume, president and CEO of Northern Kentucky Tri-ED, said the surrounding communities offer a workforce that will ensure WABCO’s success.
“Automotive suppliers have found success in Northern Kentucky and I congratulate WABCO on its growth,” Crume said. “Boone County offers a workforce with advanced manufacturing skills and an ideal geographic location for the automotive OEM and supplier network.”
To encourage the investment and job growth in the community, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) on Thursday preliminarily approved a 10-year incentive agreement with the company under the Kentucky Business Investment program. The performance-based agreement can provide up to $1.1 million in tax incentives based on the company’s investment of $3 million and annual targets of:
- Creation and maintenance of 123 Kentucky-resident, full-time jobs across 10 years
- Paying an average hourly wage of $39 including benefits across those jobs
By meeting its annual targets over the agreement term, the company can be eligible to keep a portion of the new tax revenue it generates. The company may claim eligible incentives against its income tax liability and/or wage assessments.
In addition, WABCO can receive resources from the Kentucky Skills Network. Through the Kentucky Skills Network, companies can receive no-cost recruitment and job placement services, reduced-cost customized training and job training incentives.
For more information on WABCO, visit www.WABCO-auto.com.
A detailed community profile for Northern Kentucky can be viewed here.