GASTON COUNTY, N.C. — KNOLL America, a German industrial automatic company, will establish a new U.S. headquarters and manufacturing facility in Gaston County, creating 31 new jobs.
The company plans to invest more than $7.8 million in locating a new headquarters and manufacturing facility in Gaston County’s Apple Creek Corporate Park.
Officials said the 60,000-square foot headquarters and production facility will include a state-of-the-art training area, showroom, warehouse and distribution center at the 12-area site.
“We are excited to have another global manufacturer choose North Carolina for its headquarters,” Gov. Roy Cooper said. “This decision affirms our state’s reputation of having a strong manufacturing workforce and great quality of life.”
KNOLL America is the U.S. subsidiary for German-based KNOLL Maschinenbau GmbH, which was founded by Walter Knoll in 1970. KNOLL engineers, manufactures and distributes conveying, filter systems and pumps for chips and cooling lubricants used in the metal processing industry.
“We felt immediately very welcomed. Gaston County provides an excellent manufacturing environment for our needs. The close proximity to major interstates and airport allows us to service most customers within a day. We can engage with Gaston College in developing young skilled talent for our operation and support their apprenticeship program. The small-town community feeling is like the area where our Germany Headquarters is located,” CEO of KNOLL America, Lothar Burger, said. “This investment is made possible because our owners Matthias and Juergen Knoll believe in our local team and the strength of the North American market. This venture is part of their international initiative within the KNOLL Group.”
New positions at the production facility will include technicians, assemblers, sales, administrative and distribution roles.
The average salary for the new positions is more than $51,000. Gaston County’s average annual salary is just over $42,000.
Burger said he will rely on Gaston College to help train workers on their special brand of products.
“Customized training for our new hires in order to bring them up to speed relatively quickly,” Burger said.
The state commerce secretary said the county is a perfect place for business.
“The region has quick access to I-85 and I-40, placing companies with a day’s drive of 150 million customers,” Secretary Machelle Baker Sanders said. “County leaders are excited about attracting a global company to occupy space here.”
County leaders hope it says a lot for other industries.
“Word will get out, and we probably will have more suiters calling on our EDC,” Commission Chairman Tom Keigher said.
Knoll America is going to Gaston County with a $75,000 grant from the state. It comes with conditions that the company hires 31 people and comes through with $7.8 million of investments in the county.
“We’re excited to welcome KNOLL America to Gaston County,” North Carolina Senator Kathy Harrington said. “This is a celebration for all of North Carolina as another international company has chosen to invest in our community.”
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