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Lippert, Kinro Expansions Add 330 Jobs in Elkhart County

Lippert Components Manufacturing, Inc. and Kinro Manufacturing, Inc., subsidiaries of Drew Industries Inc.,have  announced that Goshen and Middlebury in Indiana have been chosen as the sites for an expansion of operations by both companies. The expansions will create up to 330 new jobs by 2012.

The decision by the companies to locate these expansions in Elkhart County came after consideration of locations in other states. The positions are a result of continuing company growth through previously announced strategic acquisitions. A portion of the operations being expanded are a result of the relocation of operations from another state.

“Today’s announcement by Lippert Components and Kinro Manufacturing further solidifies Indiana’s position as the top manufacturing state in the country,” said Gov. Mitch Daniels. “Elkhart County’s history of success in the RV industry will give these companies a leg-up on their out-of-state competition.”

Lippert Components, a manufacturer of recreational vehicle and manufactured housing components, plans to invest approximately $650,000 in new machinery and equipment as part of the expansion. Kinro, a manufacturer of windows and doors for the recreational vehicle, manufactured housing and other industries, plans to invest approximately $3.5 million for the lease of a facility, and the purchase of machinery and equipment for the expanded production line.

“We are extremely pleased to continue to expand the operations of both Lippert Components and Kinro in Indiana. The state of Indiana, Elkhart County and the cities of Goshen and Middlebury have shown a strong commitment to partnering with companies like ours in the recreational vehicle industry so that our industry can not only rebound from the economic downturn but also thrive in the future. We appreciate the support we have received from state, county and local officials. These expanded operations will increase our market share and expand our customer base.” said Jason Lippert, chairman and chief executive officer of Lippert Components and Kinro.

With approximately 4,000 employees nationally, Lippert Components and Kinro currently employ more than 2,800 full-time workers at locations throughout northern Indiana. The company plans to begin filling the new manufacturing and administrative positions this fall. Lippert Components and Kinro currently operate 31 facilities in 12 states.

The Indiana Economic Development Corporation offered Lippert Components Manufacturing, Inc. up to $1.55 million in performance-based tax credits and up to $165,000 in training grants based on the company’s job creation plans. Elkhart County and the city of Goshen will consider additional property tax abatement at the request of the Economic Development Corporation of Elkhart County.

“We are proud that Lippert Components and Kinro have decided to continue their commitment to Goshen and Elkhart County with these new investments in capital and jobs,” said Goshen Mayor Allan Kauffman. “As a Goshen-based company, Lippert Components has become one of our largest and most valued employers. This announcement is further evidence that our local economy is experiencing strong growth, thanks largely to the rebound in durable goods manufacturing.”

RV production in the Hoosier state continues to increase during the national economic recession. According to the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association, the RV industry produced 242,000 units nationally in 2010, a 46 percent increase from the year before. More than 83 percent of all American-made RVs built during this time period were produced in Indiana.

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