A German manufacturer has announced expansion plans at a La Porte operation. Jaeger-Unitek Sealing Solutions Inc. intends to spend $4.5 million to upgrade an existing facility and add more than 50 workers by 2016. This is the second announcement in as many days related to Governor Mike Pence's jobs mission to the European nation. April 16, 2014

News Release

HANOVER, Germany – Governor Mike Pence joined executives from the J?ger Group today to announce the company's plans to expand operations of its subsidiary Jaeger-Unitek Sealing Solutions in La Porte, Ind., creating up to 52 new jobs by 2016.

“The automotive industry is in high gear in the Hoosier State,” said Pence. “After visiting Jaeger-Unitek in La Porte earlier this month, it was a privilege to hear directly from J?ger Group’s leadership in Germany that their next growth plans are on the horizon. Indiana's manufacturing job growth is among the highest in the nation because firms around the world like the J?ger Group continue to choose Indiana – a state that works – for new jobs, recognizing the strong manufacturing skills Hoosiers bring to their operations.”

The extrusion manufacturer will invest $4.5 million to lease, renovate and equip a 137,000 square-foot facility at 115 Koomler Drive in La Porte, increasing its operational space with the new facility by 50,000 square feet. The facility, which will be fully operational by August, will allow the company to add three additional thermoplastic extrusion lines and provide space for further expansion of its rubber and plastic extrusion capabilities.

Jaeger-Unitek, which specializes in rubber extrusion components used in window, door and sunroof assemblies for the automotive industry, currently employs approximately 75 full-time Indiana associates as part of the J?ger Group's more than 1,000 employees across five countries. As part of the expansion, it has already begun recruiting, hiring and training for engineering, finance, production and maintenance positions.

“We believe Indiana is the best place for this investment. The state is much stronger logistically and from an infrastructure point of view than many other parts of the country,” said Marius J?ger, managing director of the J?ger Group. “We look forward to supporting Jaeger-Unitek as it continues to grow.”

Founded in 2006 as UniTek Sealing Solutions, Germany's J?ger Group purchased the company in 2010 and shortly after announced plans to grow the La Porte operations, doubling its employment and investing more than $3 million to add rubber and thermoplastic injection molding, cryogenic deflashing and robotic inspection. Today, Jaeger-Unitek serves Asian, European and American automakers, specializing in rubber and plastic extruded and injection molded components used in window, door and sunroof assemblies. The company's sales have tripled since 2010 and by the end of 2016 are expected to exceed $20 million.

The Indiana Economic Development Corporation offered Jaeger-Unitek Sealing Solutions, Inc. up to $500,000 in conditional tax credits based on the company's job creation plans. These tax credits are performance-based, meaning until Hoosiers are hired, the company is not eligible to claim incentives. The city of La Porte approved additional incentives at the request of the Greater La Porte Economic Development Corporation.

“The city of La Porte is thrilled to be able to celebrate the announcement of Jaeger's expansion plans within our community. This project highlights the importance of local retention and expansion efforts and identifies the accomplishments that can be achieved through the partnerships that exist between local and state governments and our business community,” said La Porte Mayor Blair Milo. “Jaeger, and the J?ger family especially, should be commended for their commitment to La Porte and the state of Indiana despite strong interest from other states.”

Pence is leading a targeted-job hunting trip to Germany this week to meet with German companies that currently have operations in Indiana, like the J?ger Group, and prospective companies considering future investments in the Hoosier State. More information about the governor's jobs and economic development mission can be found at: http://in.gov/gov/Germany2014.htm.

About Jaeger-Unitek

Jaeger-Unitek Sealing Solutions, Inc. has the expertise and ability to offer you the most effective method in meeting your needs. Jaeger-Unitek's product lines offer multiple solutions for your sealing requirements with superior quality and cost effective products. Our team is ready and welcomes your engineering and design challenges. Take advantage of our technological expertise for your new product development as well as problem solving.

The companies of the J?ger Group have been supplying components, parts and sub-systems of rubber, plastic, rubber to metal or plastic composite materials for more than 60 years. The individual companies of the J?ger Group complement each other's product lines and areas of technical expertise. We will achieve the highest level of added value for our customers through constant innovation, cost to performance leadership and premier customer service from the initial product idea to finished product delivery.

About IEDC

Created in 2005 to replace the former Department of Commerce, the Indiana Economic Development Corporation is governed by a 12-member board chaired by Governor Mike Pence. Victor Smith serves as the Indiana Secretary of Commerce and Eric Doden is the president of the IEDC.

The IEDC oversees programs enacted by the General Assembly including tax credits, workforce training grants and public infrastructure assistance. All tax credits are performance-based. Therefore, companies must first invest in Indiana through job creation or capital investment before incentives are paid. A company who does not meet its full projections only receives a percentage of the incentives proportional to its actual investment. For more information about IEDC, visit www.iedc.in.gov.

Source: The Indiana Economic Development Corp.

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