1,800 jobs coming to a new site

by workforceplanner

Workforce Locator™ is an aid to specialists who evaluate criteria for site selection. While there are many factors to consider such as highway accessibility, state and local incentives, construction costs, etc., Workforce Locator returns data on the availability of skilled labor and that may be data most vital of all for site selection decisions.

Here are two articles regarding Hankook Tire, a South Korean company’s very recent site selection decision regarding Tennessee, South Carolina, and Georgia. Although there were several favorable factors that influenced the choice, one thing in particular that struck me as worth noting  was the mention of another company’s 2011 layoff because I was imagining Hankook Tire’s planners projecting the possibility they  may become the beneficiary of that circumstance…

Hankook Tire plant to bring 1,800 jobs to Tenn.

Jimmy Settle, The (Clarksville, Tenn.) Leaf-Chronicle 12:13 p.m. EDT October 14, 2013

South Korea company plans $800 million facility; will be city’s largest private employer.

CLARKSVILLE, TENN. — State officials confirmed Monday that South Korean Hankook Tire Co. will indeed build its first U.S. manufacturing facility in Clarksville, creating nearly 2,000 direct jobs.

The announcement by Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam and other officials put to rest growing speculation that Hankook was coming to town. The company is expected to break ground on the new plant by the end of 2014 and begin tire production by 2016.

Hankook will invest over $800 million for the new state-of-the-art plant, its first in the United States. The new plant will provide additional capacity for Hankook’s growing business in the U.S. market and create approximately 1,800 full-time jobs for the region.

“This new facility will help Hankook Tire accomplish our plan to establish a production base in all major markets,” said Mr. Seung Hwa Suh, Vice Chairman and CEO of Hankook Tire. “We will be able to provide our customers, consumers and car makers with high quality tires and industry leading service to meet the demands of the American market.”

According to Haslam, state and local officials first started talking with the company about 18 months ago. The governor thanked the company, and the state and local partnership for making it happen.

Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development Commissioner Bill Haggerty said that Hankook’s choice of Clarksvile site for its first North American facility is going to be a shot heard around the world

“These 1,800 jobs will make a real difference for Tennessee, and for this area,” Haggerty said.

Clarksville Mayor Kim Millan said, “With vision and insight, Hankook Tire is committed to being a leading local company.” She also said that in Clarksville-Montgomery County, Hankook Tire would find the most dedicated, talented workforce anywhere.

McMillan credited Industrial Board Executive Director Mike Evans and his team at the EDC for their roles in the Hankook announcement.

Once production begins, Hankook will become the city’s largest private employer.

The Clarksville location is ideal for Hankook, offering an extensive transportation network including rail, plane and interstate highway networks as well as regional access to the Mississippi River inland waterway.

This announcement puts Hankook Tire one step closer to its vision of being a leading global tire company providing customers with top-tier products and service.

Nissan, General Motors and Volkswagen have assembly plants in Tennessee, and more than 900 further automotive sector companies are active in the state.

Clarksville is also home to a steel cord plant for Japanese tire maker Bridgestone, which has its Americas headquarters in Nashville.

Not all the news has been good for the tire industry in Tennessee in recent years. Goodyear in 2011 shut its plant about 100 miles to the west in Union City, causing 1,800 workers to lose their jobs.

Contributing: The Associated Press


Tiremaker passes on South Carolina, picks Tennessee for 1,800-worker plant

John McDermott
Posted: Monday, October 14, 2013 12:32 p.m.

A South Korean tiremaker has picked Tennessee over South Carolina and Georgia for an $800 million factory that will create 1,800 jobs.

Hankook said today it will build its first North American plant in Clarksville, which is about 30 miles northwest of Nashville. Production is scheduled to begin in 2016.

Seung Hwa Suh, vice chairman and CEO, called the 1.5 million-square-foot U.S. plant “the next natural phase for our continued growth.” He said the decision to build n Tennessee was the result of a year of discussions with state officials.

He cited the central location and existing auto industry as major factors. Nissan, General Motors and Volkswagen all have assembly plants in the Volunteer State.

Also, Clarksville is home to a steel cord plant for Japanese tire maker Bridgestone, which has its Americas headquarters in Nashville.

Hankook is the seventh-largest tire maker in the world.

Last month, a company executive identified South Carolina as one of three Southeast states trying to flag down the big tire-making factory.

The factory would start out by making 5 million tires a year and gradually double its annual production. It would target demand in developed countries.

According ot news reports. Hankook recently secured deals to supply tires to Mercedes-Benz S-Class and Nissan Altima sedans, and the South Korean company also is doing more business with Toyota.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.