CLARKSVILLE, Tenn.—Hankook Tire Co. Ltd. has selected a site near Clarksville for its first U.S. tire plant, an $800 million investment that should be producing tires by 2016.
Hankook picked the site in Tennessee after evaluating hundreds of potential locations throughout the southern U.S.
"This new facility will help Hankook Tire accomplish our plan to establish a production base in all major markets," said Seung Hwa Suh,Hankook, vice chairman and CEO, speaking at a ceremony Monday morning in Clarksville.
"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," he said.
The car and light truck tire plant reportedly will have an expected initial capacity of about 6 million tires annually, and it will mean about 1,800 full-time jobs at full capacity.
Hankook announced the selection at the Wilma Rudolph Event Center in Clarksville before a group of more than 2,000 local and state officials and media representatives, including Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam, who thanked Hankook for its "substantial investment" in Tennessee.
Hankook expects to break ground before the end of the year.
Clarksville, a city of about 140,000 about 50 miles northwest of Nashville, offers an extensive transportation network including rail, plane and interstate highway networks as well as regional access to the Mississippi River inland waterway, Hankook said.
Hankook first disclosed plans for a U.S. plant at last year's Specialty Equipment Market Association Show in Las Vegas.