Jan 25, 2013
Bill McMeekin
Bill McMeekin
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Investment and Job Creation: Charles Schwab, Amazon and Licorice

American Licorice Co. produces of Red Vines licorice products

A new corporate campus for Chuck and another Amazon distribution center for the Golden State tops the week’s expansions, site selections and job creation:

In Colorado, investment firm Charles Schwab Corp. is making a $230 million investment in real estate in Lone Tree, where it will consolidate operations now in three buildings into a single corporate campus. The company will bring more than 2,000 employees to the development.

In Michigan, Norplas Industries Inc. plans to open a new state-of-the art robotic paint line and injection molding process operation in Delta Township and a new operation for light assembly and sequencing of front-end modules in Brownstown Township. The company, owned by auto supplier Magna International, plans to invest $81.75 million and create 658 jobs.

In California, Amazon.com plans to open a new 1 million-square-foot, state-of-the-art fulfillment center in Tracy in San Joaquin County. The company says it will create hundreds of full-time jobs with benefits at the site. Amazon opened its first fulfillment center in California, in San Bernardino, in October 2012.

In Mississippi, Ashley Furniture Industries is adding a 275,000-square-foot facility in Verona that will create 60 jobs. Ashley Furniture already has plants in Ecru and Ripley in the state. The Verona facility is being billed as a state-of-the-art replacement part and customer support center.

Also in Mississippi, paper products manufacturer Drehle Corp. will build a manufacturing plant in Natchez, creating at least 100 new jobs. Von Drehle has acquired the former Mississippi River Pulp facility, which closed its doors in November 2012

In Louisiana, Farmers Rice Milling Co. Inc. plans a $13.4 million expansion and modernization of the company’s rice mill in eastern Calcasieu Parish. The 55,000-square-foot expansion of the mill’s clean rice packaging and distribution facility will allow the company to increase processing speed and volume and preserve 87 jobs.

In Indiana, American Licorice Co. will expand its operations in La Porte, creating up to 35 new jobs by 2015. The Bend, Ore.-headquartered company, which produces the Red Vines, Soru Punch, Super Ropes and Snaps brands, will invest approximately $10 million to equip and renovate its 285,000 square-foot facility. The expansion will include the installation of a licorice production line and the addition of a rail spur to allow the company to receive ingredients by rail.



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