French firm to put plant in city – Will occupy airport site, create up to 144 new jobs

Journal Gazette | A French auto parts manufacturer is investing more than $4 million to equip a local factory and create up to 144 new jobs by next year, state officials announced Thursday.

Faurecia Clean Mobility, which will lease and outfit a building at 4510 Airport Expressway, makes emissions control systems. The Hagerman Group built the 137,500-square-foot shell structure in hopes of luring an employer to the location near Fort Wayne International Airport.

FCM’s North American headquarters is in Columbus, Indiana, where it employs more than 1,800 people at three locations.

Although company officials considered other locations, Fort Wayne won out for several reasons, spokesman Tony Sapienza said.

The decision, he said in an email, “is a direct result of the quality of the skilled workforce in Indiana, our existing partnerships and success with our customers, and the support we’ve received from the local state and city governments.”

Plans call for local hiring to begin later this year in anticipation of a fall opening. Various engineering and production positions are being created. Sapienza didn’t have wage information on Thursday.

Dave DeGraaf, president of FCM North America, described the company’s presence in the state as significant.

“We’ve had great success growing our business in Indiana due in part to our ability to attract a highly motivated and skilled workforces, and we are looking forward to continuing that process with this new site,” he said in a statement.

The Indiana Economic Development Corp. has offered FCM almost $1 million in incentives: up to $825,000 in conditional tax credits and up to $125,000 in training grants. The employer is not eligible for the incentives until after it fills the promised jobs.

The city of Fort Wayne will consider additional incentives.

The local operation will be under the company’s clean mobility business umbrella, its largest.

“FCM recognizes the importance of meeting environmental standards and has responded to the public’s growing concerns with a comprehensive product portfolio, including catalytic converters, emissions control systems, mufflers, manifolds and complete exhaust systems,” officials said in a news release.

Faurecia’s other two key business groups are seating and interiors. Sapienza declined to reveal who the company’s customers are. That information will be provided when the facility opens in the fall, he said.

The 20-year-old company employed 100,000 in 34 countries at the end of last year. Faurecia’s 2016 total sales were $20.7 billion. Net income increased by 72 percent over the previous year.

In North America alone, Faurecia employed about 20,000 at 47 locations last year. Those operations accounted for $5.78 billion in sales.


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