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IN: Modern Forge Expanding in Indiana, Creating 240 Jobs

24 Aug, 2011


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Governor Mitch Daniels recently joined executives from Modern Forge, an aerospace, truck and recreational equipment parts manufacturer, to announce the company's plans to open a new manufacturing facility here, creating up to 240 jobs by 2014.

The Illinois-based company will invest more than $17 million towards purchasing, upgrading and equipping an existing 150,000-square-foot facility located on approximately 40 acres in Merrillville. It will also build a 60,000-square-foot forge shop on the property that will house eight forging production lines, engineering and general offices and a die shop. Once the Merrillville facility is fully operational, the company's Blue Island, Ill., facility will likely close.

"Creating a climate that attracts successful, growing companies like Modern Forge to Indiana is our top priority," said Daniels. "Since day one, we have worked hard to make Indiana the top jobs state in the country and Modern Forge will benefit from our strong infrastructure, skilled workforce and business friendly environment."

With more than 700 employees nation-wide, Modern Forge will begin hiring new associates next year. The positions will be across the company, including engineering, operations and inspection.

"The IEDC and city of Merrillville people have been very easy to work with. Indiana has and continues to create a positive business environment for manufacturers such as Modern," said Greg Heim, owner of Modern Forge. "As a third generation business owner, the common sense approach to business makes Indiana a top choice for manufacturers. Modern looks forward to serving our many customers out of our new plant in Indiana over the companies next 100 years."

Modern Forge was launched in 1914 in Blue Island, Ill., by Melvin and Sadie Farmer. During the Great Depression, the company produced packing rings for locomotive axles and horseshoes for police mounts. Now owned by Greg and Rick Heim, the company operates 35 production forge units and machine centers around the country and reported more than $100 million in revenue in 2010.

The Indiana Economic Development Corporation offered Modern Forge Companies LLC up to $2,000,000 in performance-based tax credits and up to $200,000 in training grants based on the company's job creation plans. The city of Merrillville has approved additional property tax abatement at the request of the Lake County Economic Development Department. The Northwest Indiana Regional Development Authority also offered assistance to attract the company's new facility.

"Because of Merrillville's commitment to rebuilding Colorado Street, our town is reaping the benefits of these efforts with 240 new jobs and a new manufacturer in town," said Shawn Pettit, Merrillville town councilman.

The forging company, which provides services to the automotive, aerospace, railroad and marine industries, first began supplying Harley Davidson with parts in 1916, making it the oldest, active parts supplier to the motorcycle manufacturer. Modern Forge's parts are present in the engines and frames of all Harley Davidson platform models.

Modern Forge joins the growing list of companies that have chosen to locate in Indiana from Illinois with 13 companies so far this year planning to move all or a portion of their operations to the Hoosier state. Earlier this month, CN, one of North America's largest railroads, announced plans to relocate a portion of its operations from Markham, Ill. to Gary, Ind. The company will invest $163 million to redevelop the existing Kirk Yard rail facility and projects to create up to 251 new jobs by 2015.


About Modern Forge
Modern Forge Companies, LLC is one of the largest independent forging and machining companies in North America. Founded in 1914 in Blue Island, Illinois, Modern has manufacturing facilities in Illinois, Wisconsin, Tennessee and Texas. Modern employs 700 nationally and serves many industries including motorcycle, marine, oilfield, agriculture, railroad, aircraft, mining, power generation and automotive after-market.


About IEDC
Created by Governor Mitch Daniels in 2005 to replace the former Department of Commerce, the Indiana Economic Development Corporation is governed by a 12-member board chaired by Governor Daniels. Mitch Roob serves as the chief executive officer of the IEDC. For more information about IEDC, visit www.iedc.in.gov.
 

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