GREENSBURG – Auto parts maker Valeo Engine Cooling (www.valeo.com) plans to invest nearly $28 million in new machinery in Greensburg and expects to create 257 new jobs by the end of 2015.
The company, which was established in the city in 1989, will add four new product lines for Honda, Nissan, Chrysler and Ford, according to city officials.
Total annual compensation for the 257 jobs will be about $14.5 million, or about $56,400 per job, though that includes benefit costs, the officials said.
Greensburg Mayor Gary Herbert said the investment and jobs came about in part because of good communication between the company and city officials, who are focusing on bringing jobs to the community that pay good wages.
Marc Coplon, Greensburg/Decatur County Economic Development Corp. executive director, said Valeo executives chose to expand in Greensburg in part because they are pleased with the performance of local employees.
Valeo’s Greensburg campus covers 400,000 square feet and employs nearly 700. It manufactures engine cooling loop exchangers and modules; charge air, exhaust gas and oil coolers; and front end modules. The plant’s Paris-based parent company has nearly 75,000 employees in 29 countries and generates annual sales of about $16 billion.
Valeo employed just over 400 in January 2013, when leaders announced a $15.5 million investment that was expected to create 209 jobs. Including the latest investment, the company is projected to employ about 950 by the end of next year.
Coplon said that growth at Valeo will boost local employment even more, because manufacturing jobs typically help create retail and service sectors jobs, too.
“One thing leads to another,” Herbert agreed.
The mayor added that for the community to be able to continue to attract good jobs, it must continue to invest in infrastructure. The city has good interstate and rail access, but it must pursue a bigger airport and better road connections, which includes making State Road 3 a four-lane highway between interstates 70 and 74.