Henderson County, NC – UPM Raflatac announced plans today to expand their Henderson County, North Carolina operations. The Finnish-based company cited new technology and product development opportunities that will lead to the addition of at least 51 new employees and an investment of $11.5 million. The average wage associated with the project is in excess of $34,653 annually plus benefits, exceeding the County’s average wage.
Before deciding to expand in Henderson County, UPM evaluated sites and buildings in South Carolina, Ohio and Illinois as well as multiple opportunities within the Western North Carolina region. Company executive Phil Webb stated, “Our company has a strong history in Henderson County, and that relationship is a product of our confidence in the business climate, workforce and support network in place to ensure our successful start-up and ongoing operation.” Chairman Tommy Thompson, of the Henderson County Board of Commissioners remarked that, “seeing an international company continue to choose to invest and grow in our county, now for the fourth time, is a testament to the business and manufacturing culture of our community.”
The location of the company’s new operation was made possible by support from the North Carolina Rural Center’s Building Reuse and Restoration Program. The project was awarded a $240,000 matching grant to complete qualifying renovations and improvements to the building at 280 Cane Creek Road. Senator Tom Apodaca, who provided strong assistance to the Rural Center grant application, said, “the State of North Carolina continues to assess and invest in adaptive programs, like those at the Rural Center, to close projects and deliver quality jobs to our citizens.”
The project received support through local assistance programs with Henderson County and the Town of Fletcher, in addition to a One North Carolina fund grant from the State. Mayor Bill Moore said, “The Town of Fletcher is recognized as an advanced manufacturing hub in western NC, a place where companies from all over the world choose to grow and employ our citizens.” Kelly Leonard, Chairman of the Partnership Board of Directors, reinforced Moore’s view by saying, “our organizational priority has always been to focus first on protecting and encouraging those companies that are already invested in our community. This project is a reflection of the success of that strategy, and we congratulate and thank UPM Raflatac for choosing to grow in Henderson County.”
The Henderson County Partnership for Economic Development, Inc. is a 501(c)6 organization that works to: retain and attract quality jobs; solicit new business compatible with the assets and values of Henderson County; promote Henderson County’s business image; assist expansion of existing companies; and enhance Henderson County’s overall quality of life. For more information on the Partnership visit www.strategiclocation.com. For more information about UPM Raflatac, visit www.upmraflatac.com.