SHELBYVILLE, Ky.—Bekaert Corp. will expand its Shelbyville plant with the addition of a hot-dip galvanizing line to further solidify its base in parts of the U.S. and Canada.
The subsidiary of Belgium-based N.V. Bekaert S.A. is expected to create 10 jobs at the 260,000-sq.-ft. factory once the upgrade is complete, according to a spokeswoman for Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority.
The facility, which makes drawn steel wire products, currently employs about 100.
Another spokeswoman estimated the company would invest about $2 million in the expansion, the majority of it going for new equipment.
The economic development authority recently gave its preliminary approval on tax incentives of up to $200,000 for Bekaert through the Kentucky Business Investment program.
The incentive can be earned over a five-year period through corporate income tax credits and wage assessments, she said, and the maximum annual approved amount to be earned by the company is $40,000.
In addition, the Bluegrass State Skills Corp., the work force training arm of the state Cabinet for Economic Development, approved a grant-in-aid package over a five-year period for the company to provide skills training for new and existing employees.
The location of the plant is strategic for Bekaert to serve many of the firm's customers in the eastern part of the U.S. and Canada, Plant Manager Kendall Hall said.
Located in Shelbyville since 1990, the factory makes wire products used in a variety of applications.
The new hot-dip galvanizing line will provide corrosion protection for wire used in exposed environments, the company said.
The addition is the second significant move Bekaert has made in the last month and a half. In early February, the company acquired two steel cord plants—one in Italy, the other in China—from Bridgestone Corp. and inked a multiyear supply agreement with the tire maker.
All personnel and assets of the plant are included in the transaction, Bekaert said.
Integration of the two factories into the Bekaert global network will strengthen the company's position in the tire cord market, the firm said. It added that the long-term supply agreement further enhances the steel wire producer's status as a key external supplier for cord to Bridgestone.