AL: Canadian Auto Supplier Kobay Enstel Plans Calhoun County Factory
4 Mar, 2016
Canadian automotive supplier Kobay Enstel announced plans to create at least 75 jobs over three years at a new facility in Calhoun County.
The Calhoun County Economic Development Council said Kobay Enstel, which stamps metal parts for auto seats, is leasing a 60,000-square-foot speculative building on McIntosh Road in Oxford under a 13-year agreement with the EDC and the City.
“Our mission is to bring jobs to Calhoun County,” EDC Chairman Larry Deason said. “These are the kind of skilled labor jobs that we seek, as they match our workforce profile and strengthen our position as a player in Alabama’s growing automotive industry.”
Kobay Enstel has a long relationship with Honda and says about 70 percent of its products are manufactured for the Japanese automaker. Honda has invested more than $2.2 billion in an Alabama auto assembly plant, just minutes away from Calhoun County in Lincoln.
“We are excited about the opportunity for growth and expansion in the South,” said Gavin Galansky, president of Kobay Enstel–South.
The project was brought to Calhoun County by the Alabama Department of Commerce. Commerce Secretary Greg Canfield said the EDC’s 2011 investment in the expandable speculative building was a key factor that made Calhoun County the destination of choice for Ontario-based Kobay.
“Speculative buildings are constructed for companies on a short timeline,” Secretary Canfield said. “Kobay Enstel wants to start production during the first quarter, so the EDC’s portfolio of spec buildings puts Calhoun County on the short list.”
The EDC has three move-in-ready speculative buildings and is constructing a fourth in the McClellan Industrial Park.
Also critical was the EDC’s positive working relationship between local municipalities such as Oxford to put up the necessary investments to seal the deal, Canfield said.
The EDC will waive two years’ rent for the building space, and the City of Oxford will cover the rent for a third year, provided Kobay Enstel hires at least 75 employees in the first three years, Deason said.
“We are thrilled that Kobay Enstel is our newest corporate citizen,” said Steven Waits, president of the Oxford City Council. “Oxford has proven over and again that investing in jobs has a tremendous payback for the city and the region.”