'Boring' Business Brings 'Exciting' Possibilities

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(Image courtesy of Winona Building Products.) (Image courtesy of Winona Building Products.)

Though he describes it as "kind of boring on the outside," the president of a manufacturer launching in Marshall County says his industry provides exciting product development opportunities in the state. Brian Bailey adds he's confident Winona Building Products LLC will be able to drum up the workforce in Plymouth needed to fill the planned 150 new positions. The work, which involves manufacturing insulation facing and vapor-retardant materials for industrial customers, will be highly-automated, Bailey says, and well-suited for many of the nearly 250 area workers displaced when Del Monte and Bay Valley Foods announced last year their facilities would be closing in Plymouth.

The company's founders also own Kosciusko County-based Winona Powder Coating Inc. and E&H Products Inc. of Florida. It is locating in the space formerly occupied by Del Monte Foods Inc.

In an interview with Inside INdiana Business, Bailey said sites in Florida were considered, but multiple factors led to the decision to locate in Indiana. "We ultimately chose northern Indiana because of being able to leverage a few of the (administrative) resources from Winona Powder Coating," he said. "The fact that we're able to leverage a core group of folks and then our familiarity with northern Indiana -- being Indiana folks -- combined with the (state and local) incentives, is what ultimately put it over the top for us to remain in the area and invest in the north central Indiana area."

Bailey says the price to use the former Del Monte plant is about 30 percent than it would have cost to build from scratch. He says Winona Building Products has been more than two years in the making after research and "due diligence" determined there is a need for a "second supplier" in its industry -- one that will deliver a "better than average" creation. "We could've come to market with a 'me-too' product," Bailey said, "but instead, we decided to go the innovative route and come out with a product meant for 2017-2018 at the time."

The facility is expected to open in November and could grow to include four production lines over the next four years.

In an interview with Inside INdiana Business, Winona Building Products President Brian Bailey said sites in Florida were considered, but multiple factors led to the decision to locate in Indiana.
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