Aerospace manufacturer Alcoa to expand La Porte operations, add 300+ jobs

LAPORTE Hundreds of jobs will be coming to LaPorte where an aerospace manufacturer plans to expand with a multi-million dollar facility.
Thursday morning Governor Mike Pence along with leaders from Alcoa and employees from LaPorte's plant gathered to celebrate an expansion.

There was an official groundbreaking and folks could sign a beam that will eventually go up in the new facility.

Plant two will be built behind the original one in LaPorte.

It'll cost one hundred million dollars and produce nickel-based superalloy jet engine parts that can withstand hot temperatures. Eventually there will be 329 more jobs created.

It's the largest addition of jobs and investment by one company in LaPorte County's history.

Alcoa says they needed to expand as demand in the aerospace industry continues to grow on the commercial and military side.

The state of Indiana and the city of LaPorte both offered millions in tax credits as an incentive to expand in the Hoosier state.
Governor Mike Pence says, “At the end of the day, while there is a broad range of policies that result in great job announcements like today, ultimately businesses like Alcoa are choosing Indiana because they are choosing the people of Indiana.”

“As a key player in the supply chain we need to be where our customers need us to be to support their activities and one of the nice things is it's a global industry and global supply chain,” says Alcoa’s COO Eric Roegner.
This is the second city in Indiana, Alcoa has invested in two years.

Soon a new plant in Lafayette will open.

More information from the Alcoa media release:

Alcoa will invest $100 million to construct and equip a new 320,000 square-foot facility that will produce nickel-based superalloy jet engine parts. The facility will expand Alcoa’s reach from structural engine components for business and regional jets to large commercial aircraft, including narrow- and wide-body and military airplanes. Construction is underway on the plant, which will be adjacent to its current 200,000 square-foot La Porte operation.

The plant will also increase the company’s capacity to supply engines for narrow-body aircraft, which are among the top selling jet engines in the world. With its growth, Alcoa will have the capacity to produce parts nearly 60 percent larger than components it makes today, expanding its market reach to wide-body airplanes. These components are used in the compression and hot sections of the engine. Alcoa is already the global leader in jet engine airfoils.

“Aerospace growth is soaring and Alcoa is ramping up our downstream capabilities to capture that demand,” said Klaus Kleinfeld, chairman and chief executive officer of Alcoa. “Applying our industry-leading expertise, this facility will deliver highly engineered parts our customers need to build some of the best-selling engines and at high volumes.”

Founded more than 125 years ago, Alcoa employs approximately 60,000 people in 30 countries. In Indiana alone, the company employs more than 3,200 associates at three locations: Evansville, Lafayette and La Porte. Alcoa operates 27 manufacturing facilities across the United States, Canada, France, Japan and the United Kingdom. In 2013, the company had overall sales of $23 billion with its aerospace businesses producing $4 billion in revenue.

“The city of La Porte is proud to celebrate this momentous occasion with the Alcoa team,” said La Porte Mayor Blair Milo. “Over the years, La Porte and Alcoa have developed a strong partnership due to Alcoa’s industry-leading status as well as its leadership role within our community. We are excited to grow that partnership in lock step as Alcoa continues to enjoy growth and success.”

Alcoa’s La Porte facility, which was founded in 1957, manufactures highly engineered turbine components made of advanced nickel-based superalloys for jet engines, industrial gas turbines and other turbine-based transportation products. The La Porte facility currently has 470 associates.

The Indiana Economic Development Corporation offered Howmet Castings & Services, Inc., a subsidiary of Alcoa, up to $4,000,000 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 Greater La Porte Economic Development Corporation.

This is the second major aerospace investment by Alcoa in Indiana in two years. In 2012, Alcoa announced construction of a $90 million greenfield aluminum lithium facility at its Lafayette operations, creating up to 75 new jobs. The facility is on schedule to open later this year and will be capable of producing upwards of 20,000 metric tons of Alcoa’s patented aluminum-lithium alloys used to build dramatically lighter and lower-cost airplanes versus composite alternatives.

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