UPDATE: New plant will create 675 jobs in northwest Louisiana - KTBS.com - Shreveport, LA News, Weather and Sports

UPDATE: New plant will create 675 jobs in northwest Louisiana

A German manufacturer will open its first U.S. plant at the Port of Caddo-Bossier, creating 675 jobs that each pay about $50,000 annually.

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal said the $900 million hot rolling tube mill also will generate more than 1,540 new, indirect jobs, resulting in a total of more than 2,200 new, permanent jobs.

About 1,000 construction jobs will be created in opening the two-phases of the plant.

Matthias Jaeger, president and CEO of Benteler Steel/Tube was on hand for the announcement and said his firm had looked at a 100 possible sites.

The finished products made at the new 330-acre plant will be used in energy exploration.

Benteler will begin construction in 2013 with completion of the first tubular mill phase expected in the second half of 2015.

That will be followed by the opening of a steel production mill within the next four years. The bulk of the full-time employee hiring for the first phase of the project is anticipated to occur in 2014.

Together the two phases will be 1.35 million square feet in size.

Benteler would become the single largest employer at the port, which is located on the Red River. Other major employers are Ternium (124 employes), Pratt Industries (120) and RonPak (75).

During the term of Benteler's contract with the state, which runs through 2035,  total new earnings of $2.7 billion (approximately $150 million per year at full employment) are projected in northwest Louisiana, according to an LSU economic analysis. Total cumulative economic impact for the region: $16.2 billion.

Benteler Steel/Tube GmbH, based in Paderborn, Germany,  is a business unit of privately held Benteler International AG, which is based in Salzburg, Austria.

The seamless steel tubes produced by the facility will be used for the exploration and transportation of oil and gas, as well as for the generation of power and mechanical applications.

Currently, seamless steel tube facilities of various manufacturers in North America are concentrated in Alabama, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Mexico, according to information provided by the governor's office.

The output of the new facility at the port primarily will be destined for locations in Illinois, Indiana, Ohio and Texas.

To secure the project, LED offered Benteler a customized incentive package that includes performance-based grants totaling $57.4 million to reimburse site development, infrastructure and equipment costs incurred by the port and the company over the next few years of construction and operations; a performance-based grant of $12.75 million to reimburse certain relocation and internal training expenses; and the development of a new training facility and specialized equipment focused on manufacturing technology to be built on the campus of the Bossier Parish Community College.

The Red River Waterway Commission will contribute $6 million, The Port of Caddo-Bossier will contribute $3 million, and the Caddo Parish Commission will contribute $2.6 million, all for infrastructure improvements at the port required to support the new facility.

Bossier City, Bossier Parish and the Greater Bossier Economic Development Foundation also will contribute $1 million to $22 million infrastructure improvements at the BPCC training site. After first f meeting Benteler's initial needs, the facility will serve the broader needs of growing manufacturers throughout the region.

"The training center will allow BPCC and FastStart to provide Benteler Steel/Tube a well-trained team on day one and will enhance our ability to develop talent for the manufacturing, construction, and energy sectors for decades to come," said BPCC Chancellor Jim Henderson. FastStart is the state's much-heralded work force training program that gets repeated credit for successful industrial recruiting.For updates and information on hiring, click here.


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