TROY, AL (WSFA) - Troy is about to get an economic shot in the arm with 366 jobs expected after a leading firearms maker announced Tuesday it will soon build a facility in Alabama.
Gov. Kay Ivey's office confirmed Tuesday evening that Kimber Manufacturing, based in Yonkers, New York, will invest $38 million in the manufacturing facility over the next five years. It should be up and running by early 2019. This will be the company's sixth U.S. location
"With talented Alabamians already manufacturing a wide range of high-quality products that are in demand around the globe, the state can offer Kimber an ideal business environment and a skilled workforce for its expansion project," Ivey said. "Kimber's investment in Troy will create a significant number of high-paying design engineering and manufacturing jobs, and we are committed to helping the company find long-lasting success in Alabama."
"We are pleased with the impressive track record that Alabama has with attracting and retaining world-class manufacturing companies," said Leslie Edelman, Kimber's president and chief executive officer. "Growing our company intelligently depends significantly on being in the right manufacturing environment, and in Troy, we have a community dedicated to our long-term success. It has been a pleasurable and fruitful experience working with Mayor Jason Reeves and his team."
Greg Grogan, Kimber's chief operating officer, said the company will build a large, automated, state-of-the-art design engineering and manufacturing facility in Troy to support Kimber's strategic growth plans.
"Troy offers us expansion with a passionate workforce, extraordinarily low utility costs, a pro-business environment, experienced local training support, and long-term incentives from the state and local government alike," Grogan said. "This expansion in conjunction with our existing manufacturing facilities, talented and experienced employees, and best-in-class products provides for exciting times here at Kimber."
James Cox, Kimber's chief financial officer, said an unprecedented growth in demand for Kimber products is driving the company to increase its manufacturing capacity.
"As we continue to move into uncharted waters in regards to Kimber product demand, it was important to us to build a facility that will allow us to secure a significant new plateau of capacity," he said.
"Kimber is a first-class firearms manufacturer with a reputation for precision craftsmanship, dependability and accuracy, which makes it just the kind of high-performance company we want to attract to the state," said Greg Canfield, secretary of the Alabama Department of Commerce. "We look forward to Kimber joining the ranks of great manufacturers that are growing and thriving in our state."
"It is the realization of a long-term goal for the City of Troy and for me personally to see a firearms manufacturing company with a stellar brand like Kimber creating jobs and investing in the community," Mayor Jason Reeves added. "Troy has a strong manufacturing base, and Kimber will substantially add to that foundation."
The new facility will be located off U.S. Highway 231 South in the city's industrial park.
Marcus Paramore, Troy City Council President, is calling it the biggest economic announcement in recent years.
"It lets people know we're open for business," said Paramore.
"Very popular handguns. They are the 5th largest producer of handguns in the world," said Paramore.
Troy sealed the deal after promising $20 million in incentives. Most of that will go towards adding on to on the current building. Paramore says he's very confident the city will get a healthy return on its investment through its own utilities division.
"They will use a lot of utilities. We own our utilities and that will be one of our largest revenue sources here," Paramore said.
Troy started down this road two years ago pursuing Kimber. The company liked what it saw and heard so they decided to come on down to Alabama. In fact, this is Kimber's 6th plant across the country.
"This part of the country.. this part of the state.. our area and probably one of the greatest things we take pride is the second amendment," he said.
"We feel very confident the 366 mark by the third year which is the mark on the incentives package," Paramore said.
Kimber is aiming to be up and running one year from now.
Council president Paramore says the state of Alabama also chipped in $30 million in incentives. Paramore says Kimber will make an announcement when it's ready to begin hiring later this year.