Interstate Lane: October 2015

By wmadministrator

Indiana: Subaru gears up for $140M expansion that will add 1,200 jobs

Subaru of Indiana Automotive is investing $140.2 million to increase production capacity at its Lafayette, Ind., plant by 100,000 annually. The expansion will drive the addition of 1,204 more jobs at the plant by 2017.

Established in 1987, SIA is a wholly owned subsidiary of Japan-based Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd. and is one of only three Subaru assembly plants worldwide. SIA, which builds the Subaru Outback and Subaru Legacy, is Subaru’s only production facility located outside Japan. The plant also produces the Toyota Camry under a contract with Toyota.

SIA’s investment will be in addition to a $400 million expansion that is currently underway. That project is dedicated to a new paint shop and an expansion of the engine assembly and stamping sections to enable SIA to begin Subaru Impreza production by the end of 2016.

SIA currently employs more than 3,800 people and produces approximately 300,000 cars each year. The company’s expansion is also expected to spur growth of its direct material suppliers, 28 of which are located in Indiana.

Indiana: New stress-relief product line from excellon adds 400 jobs

Excellon Technologies, a Fort Wayne manufacturing company that primarily serves the aerospace and defense industries, has announced plans to launch a new product line that will create up to 415 new jobs within the next four years.

Excellon is investing $2.14 million to purchase new equipment and upgrade its existing manufacturing facility in Fort Wayne to produce its new CapeAble line, a group of therapeutic products designed to ease stress, anxiety, learning challenges, sleep issues and related health concerns. The line includes more than 18 items that create deep pressure on muscles, joints, tendons and ligaments through CapeAble’s medical patent-pending quilted squares. According to the company, the products address various symptoms of stress and anxiety by allowing the central nervous system to better interpret and integrate various sensory inputs. Production of the CapeAble Sensory Products line has already begun and the products’ effects are currently being studied at Baptist Memorial Hospital in Jacksonville, Fla.

Excellon was established in Fort Wayne in 2001 as a two-person engineering firm and has since been named twice to INC Magazine’s 100 fastest-growing inner city companies in the United States. The company currently employs 65 associates in Indiana and is hiring seamstresses, tailors and support personnel to accommodate the expansion.

IN BRIEF:

Indiana

  • Sweetwater Sound Inc., a major retailer of musical instruments and audio gear, is investing $8.8 million to expand its Fort Wayne headquarters operations. The project will include a new facility to house the company’s marketing and merchandising departments as well as a new state-of-the-art video studio. The expansion will create up to 285 new jobs by the end of 2018, bringing the total full-time workforce in Fort Wayne to 1,000.
  • Indiana Coatings, a newly incorporated industrial coatings supplier serving Tier 1 automotive and appliance industries, is investing $3.8 million to establish a new operation in Berne, Ind., that will create up to 120 new jobs by 2018. The company, which is affiliated with a similar facility in Ontario, Canada, is locating in the former Ficosa North America plant and plans to begin production in January 2016.

Ohio

  • Pharmaceutical services company Omnicare will begin laying off approximately 232 employees at its downtown Cincinnati headquarters at the end of October. The layoffs are tied to Omnicare’s August acquisition by CVS Health Corp. and include numerous high-level executives at Omnicare.
  • Cincinnati-based law firm Dinsmore & Shohl LLC has merged with Gifford, Krass, Sprinkle, Anderson & Citkowski P.C., a 100-year-old Michigan-based intellectual property firm. The merger adds 17 attorneys and 32 professional staff to the firm, boosting Dinsmore’s IP department to 75 attorneys and 600 attorneys overall in 20 locations.

Tennessee

  • Worthington Industries, a company that is a market leader in custom-engineered operator cabs for industrial mobile equipment, is investing more than $14 million to expand its current operations in Greenville, Tenn. The project will add four new product lines and 140 new jobs. The company currently employs 315 in Greenville.
  • Institutional Casework Inc. (ICI) has announced plans to open a new manufacturing facility in Union City, bringing 200 new jobs to the western Tennessee community. The Union City plant will house the company’s laboratory products division and will produce laboratory-grade painted steel casework and furniture, phenolic laboratory casework and work surfaces. Production is expected to begin in early 2016.
  • Multimatic, a Canada-based automotive supplier, is investing more than $20 million to locate a new plant in Lewisburg, Tenn., that will create 181 new jobs. The Lewisburg plant will produce instrument panel structures, rocker braces, and upper and lower tie-bar supports.
  • A China-based injection molding company has announced plans to locate its U.S. headquarters in Knoxville. Innovate Manufacturing has four plastics factories and an engineering office in China but is moving a portion of its operations to the United States due to lower shipping and energy costs and proximity to its client base. The office will employ approximately 50 people and will be Innovate’s first facility outside of China.

West Virginia

  • MorphoTrak has opened a facility in Morgantown, W. Va., to house the company’s program management and engineering operations. MorphoTrak is a subsidiary of Morpho (Safran) that provides biometric identity and security solutions to more than 1,000 federal, state and local government agencies and commercial enterprises. The Morgantown location will enable MorphoTrak to be responsive to the needs of the FBI, its key federal client, and will also allow the company to expand its work with West Virginia University’s biometrics and forensics programs.
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