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NC business wants to expand into industrial park                         By BRIAN JUSTICE City Editor Tullahoma News Andrea Agardy | Posted on Tuesday, January 10, 2012

The Tullahoma Planning Commission is considering a conditional use permit that would allow a structural wall panel company to operate from the former Gilco Metal Products building in the Tullahoma Industrial Park.The company is Ideal Precast Inc., based in Durham, N.C., with another plant at Lebanon, Pa.   The Planning Commission will consider the company’s request at its 4:30 p.m. meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 17, at City Hall.                                                                                                                                                                         Ideal Precast is a specialty service company that focuses on producing concrete panel walls used by homebuilders, general contractors, facility owners and architects. The company’s website says precast panel walls are “a practical, and economical structural system supporting various spaces, from homes to commercial sites: government buildings, schools to retail facilities."  Dan Buedel, Ideal Precast president, said his company would initially employ between five and 10 in its Tullahoma expansion. He added that plans are to be in operation in the year’s first quarter.  Buedel said the economy is picking up, and increased demand for Ideal Precast’s products led to the company’s decision to consider Tullahoma.  Buedel said the former Gilco building, in the 200 block of Industrial Boulevard, has 8,000 square feet available in production space, and the company could eventually expand its operations to 12,000 square feet.                                                                                                                                                                                     He said if economic building conditions were the way they were several years ago, the company could eventually employ 15 in Tullahoma, but that would require a housing and development market similar to what the nation was experiencing in 2005.  “I don’t think it will get back to that level,” he said. “But right now, it’s looking up.”

Hackney: County manufacturing jobs up 4% in 2011                   By MARIAN GALBRAITH Staff Writer  Tullahoma News  Andrea Agardy | Posted on January 13, 2012

On Wednesday, the Coffee County Industrial Board noted a few small but optimistic signs in its annual report for 2011.

Executive director Ted Hackney reported seven new “projects,” or companies considering locating in the area that were added in December, four of which are interested in the industrial parks.“One of the projects involves fabrication of corrugated drainage products,” he said, “and we have submitted the former Trade Envelope building as a possible location for that.”Hackney said the company is looking to use 15-30,000 square feet of industrial space if they locate here, and the former Trade envelope building offers roughly 20,000 square feet.

In addition, after 11 straight years of manufacturing job losses, the county finally began to show an increase in 2011. The report said that the county lost jobs at the rate of roughly two percent per year from 2000 through 2008, primarily due the nationwide loss of manufacturing jobs to foreign countries during this period.The county suffered even steeper losses in 2009 and 2010, although state and national trends began to show signs of recovery in 2010.During 2011, however, the county finally turned a corner with an increase of four percent in manufacturing jobs. At the same time, state jobs declined by one percent while the national trend showed a one percent gain.

Goodrich, Jacobs Tech join ‘Dream Tullahoma’ campaign         Tullahoma News By Andrea Agardy | Posted on Tuesday, January 10, 2012 at 3:47 pm

The Dream Tullahoma Committee’s effort to raise the city’s profile as a leader in the aerospace development gained the backing of two industry giants, with Goodrich Corp. and Jacobs Technology Inc. joining the campaign.

Alderman Mike Stanton formed the committee back in 2008 as a vehicle to celebrate the city’s history in aeronautics and to market Tullahoma as an attractive destination for new businesses.

Using the $10,000 in seed money the group was provided by the board of mayor and aldermen, the committee purchased 30 of the red, white and blue “welcome to Tullahoma” banners, as well as a 5-foot tall airplane statue that was installed in the Northgate Mall. The committee then sought the support of area businesses to support the cause, and Goodrich and Jacobs heeded the call.

Stanton said Goodrich has purchased three of the plane statues, two of which stand at the company’s plant on Mitchell Boulevard, and the third was given to the Hands On Science Center.

The landing gear component manufacturer also purchased five of the welcome to Tullahoma banners, four of which are customized with the company’s name, and the fifth bearing the name of the Hands On Science Center. All five of the banners hang along Mitchell Boulevard.

Stanton said Jacobs has supported the cause by buying the plane statue and sign marking the entrance to the Tullahoma Regional Airport, as well as a customized banner hanging in front of the company’s plant.

In addition, he said, Jacobs is in the process of designing a new sign to accompany the airplane statue it previously purchased.

“It’s a further attempt at branding the city,” Stanton said, adding the committee is very appreciative of Jacobs’ and Goodrich’s contributions. “The primary objective is to market our city.”

Brad Holt, Goodrich plant manager, said the company was glad to be able to be a part of Dream Tullahoma’s mission.

“It’s a good cause to promote the area,” Holt, who is also a member of the Dream Tullahoma Committee, said. “Aeronautics has a richer history here than people realize… The history surprised me when I first got involved.”

“It’s very rewarding,” Holt said of being a member of the committee. “We plan to remain engaged. I think we’ve done OK with it so far, and we’re going to remain committed to the effort and move forward as best we can.”

Stanton and Holt both encourage the public to attend a meeting of the Dream Tullahoma Committee to learn more about the group’s plans and to offer input. The committee meets the last Thursday of every month at city hall.

Governor, Commissioner Welcome VICAM to Coffee County

JVC, Viam, Oyama Chemical Develop New Company               $32 Million Investment, 70 New Jobs

NASHVILLE, TN. — Governor Bill Haslam and Economic and Community Development Commissioner Bill Hagerty along with Ryuji Matsumoto, president of VIAM Manufacturing Inc., announced plans today to locate VICAM in Manchester, Tenn. The company is a newly formed subsidiary of leading nonwoven materials producer Japan Vilene Company (JVC) to be managed by VIAM Manufacturing and utilize technology developed by Oyama Chemical. VICAM will build a facility for the production of a polyester-based carpet fiber that is expected to open in January 2012, and represents an investment of $32 million and 70 new jobs when all phases of construction are complete. 

“I welcome VICAM to Tennessee and thank JVC, VIAM Manufacturing and Oyama Chemical for their confidence in our state’s business friendly climate and high-quality workforce,” said Governor Haslam. “Japan has long been Tennessee’s largest foreign investor nation, and we are particularly grateful for the growing presence of Japanese companies in the Volunteer State and the investment and jobs they bring.”

VICAM’s new Manchester facility will produce polyethylene terephthalate (PET) stable carpet fiber by recycling PET clear bottles, using Oyama Chemical’s fiber technology. The carpet fiber will then be used in headliner, seat backs and door panels in the automotive industry. 

“Governor Haslam and I are focused on how we can best retain and grow jobs in Tennessee, and VICAM’s new facility will certainly help us further that goal,” said Commissioner Hagerty. “It is a testament to Tennessee and Coffee County’s attractiveness to business when companies with an established presence in our state like VIAM Manufacturing help create new jobs and encourage new ventures.”

The plant will be located on a 12-acre site that will house a 44,000 square foot facility with the capability for a future expansion of 120,000 square feet. Future expansion plans include supplying PET stable carpet fiber to VIAM Manufacturing in their manufacture of automotive floor mats. As a producer of high quality, custom design floor, trunk and cargo mats, VIAM is a supplier for many of the big automotive companies, including Nissan North America, Inc.

“I couldn’t be more pleased VICAM has chosen to make this investment in Coffee County,” said Coffee County Mayor David Pennington. “VIAM Manufacturing has a strong reputation for quality and reliability within the automotive industry, and VICAM will be creating good quality jobs for our community.”

“The success of this project is a testament to the strong working relationship between our Industrial Board, the city of Manchester, Coffee County and the state of Tennessee,” said Bill Comer, chairman, Industrial Board of Coffee County. “I believe VICAM will be a strong addition to our growing roster of corporate citizens.”

JVC was established in 1960 in Japan and has become a world leader in nonwoven products. The company expanded its operation into North American in 1983 with the establishment of VIAM Manufacturing Inc. in Santa Fe Springs, Calif., and then VIAM Tennessee in Manchester in 1999. In 2008, VIAM’s Manchester location became the headquarters for VIAM North America, a leader in automotive floor mats and interior products.

Batesville Casket Wins 2009 ‘Plant of the Year’ Award from ASSEMBLY Magazine              Written by Chip Ramsey   From Press Release

Batesville Casket in Manchester has been honored with an annual “Plant of the Year” award which recognizes excellence in U.S.-based manufacturing. ASSEMBLY Magazine, a trade publication for manufacturers, and The Boston Consulting Group (BCG), one of the world's leading management consulting firms, named Batesville Casket Company as the 2009 winner of their “Assembly Plant of the Year” award. The award spotlights a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in the United States that has applied world-class processes to reduceproduction costs, increase productivity, shorten time to market, and improve product quality.

 'Attracting bright minds' topic of UTSI lecture  staff reports Manchester Times
  The University of Tennessee Space Institute will host the Quick-Goethert Lecture at 4 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 29 in the UTSI auditorium.  The speaker for the event is Dr. Wanda Austin, president and chief executive officer for The Aerospace Corporation, based in Los Angeles. The Aerospace Corporation is a federally funded research and development center and a systems-engineering resource for complex communications, weather, navigation and reconnaissance space systems, and supports long-term planning, as well as the immediate needs of the nation's military.




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