COLUMBIA CITY - Columbia City-based Advanced Assembly LLC has announced plans to expand operations in the Whitley County city. The company, a joint venture between Comer Holdings LLC and Lear Corp.(NYSE: LEA), both based in Michigan, will invest $7 million to increase production capacity at the plant and add 100 jobs.

The Whitley County Economic Development Corp. says the investment will include new manufacturing and IT equipment at the Columbia City plant. Advanced Assembly, which manufactures and assembles seating systems for the Chevrolet Silverado pickup trucks produced at the General Motors plant in Fort Wayne, will add three new assembly lines, a new shipping system and additional material storage systems.

"With this $7 million investment, we strengthen our production, shipping and material storage capacity at the Columbia City facility, and fortify our ability to deliver quality automotive seating for our customers,” said Leonard Fox, vice president of operations for Integrated Manufacturing and Assembly, another joint venture between Comer and Lear. "We are proud to reinforce our presence in Columbia City, and enhance development of this community where our valued employees live and work."

The Whitley County EDC says the additional jobs will make Advanced Assembly one of the largest employers in the county. The Whitley County Redevelopment Commission has approved a $235,000 training grant for the new jobs.