Officials break ground on 47,000-square-foot expansion
La Crosse – DuraTech Industries Inc., which provides high-quality custom label printing services for customers worldwide, today is breaking ground on a 47,300-square-foot expansion to the company’s manufacturing facility in La Crosse.
The $7.5 million project will help DuraTech continue to meet the growing demand for its products, and is expected to result in the creation of at least 50 new jobs over the next four years.
“It’s only fitting that DuraTech celebrates its 40th year in business by embarking on this expansion project, which is good news for the Coulee Region and the entire state,” said Governor Scott Walker. “Manufacturing is a vital part of Wisconsin’s economy and is at the heart of our economic resurgence. Companies like DuraTech play a key role in the many successes we’ve experienced in the last six years.”
“We are excited to get started on this world-class, two-story addition,” said DuraTech President Peter Johnson. “It will streamline our process flow, thus saving hundreds of labor hours each year. It will also house two clean rooms for our high-speed printing presses and will have additional capacity to grow in the upcoming years.”
The Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) is supporting the expansion by awarding DuraTech up to $215,000 in state income tax credits over the next four years. The actual amount of tax credits received will be contingent upon the number of jobs created and the amount of capital investment during that time.
In addition, WEDC has approved an allocation of up to $6.6 million in Industrial Revenue Bonds to the city of La Crosse to provide financial support for the project. The city will issue the bonds on behalf of DuraTech, and proceeds from the sale of those bonds will help finance the construction. The city is also providing a $275,000 tax incremental financing grant to the development to provide vital gap funding for the construction of the new facility and redevelopment of the existing buildings.
“DuraTech has become a leader in its industry by continuing to develop new and innovative products to serve the market, and we congratulate the company on its expansion,” said Mark R. Hogan, secretary and CEO of WEDC, the state’s lead economic development organization. “Economic development is most successful when it is driven from the local or regional level, and this project is an excellent example of how the state and city worked in tandem to meet the needs of this growing company.”
“The city of La Crosse is so pleased to partner with DuraTech and the State of Wisconsin on this critical expansion,” said Mayor Tim Kabat. “The project will add jobs and improve operations and efficiencies – and help DuraTech’s plans for continued growth and development here in the city. DuraTech has been an important business in our Interstate Industrial Park, and we are excited for the future.”
Added Brian Fukuda, community development specialist for the county: “La Crosse County is thrilled to see DuraTech’s continued growth. They are really the poster company for the county’s Innovation and Diversification Grant Program, which was designed to help strong companies like DuraTech continue to innovate and lead within their industries. We are thankful for their investment in our community and their dedication to continuous improvement.”
DuraTech has developed a new product line for in-mold decorated labels that has fueled significant growth over the last four years, and the company plans to launch other new products as well. Because of the growing demand for its products, DuraTech has outgrown its existing manufacturing facility on Commerce Street in La Crosse, and will expand and purchase new equipment as part of the project. The addition is expected to be completed in January 2018.
“The DuraTech team is very thankful to our customers, whose demand for our new technology is driving our growth,” Johnson said. “We would also like to thank ISG and Weiser Brothers for all of their hard work on designing and quoting the expansion. We also thank the City of La Crosse, WEDC and BMO Bank for putting together a great financing package to allow us to move forward with the expansion. Most importantly, none of this would be possible without the hard work and dedication of all of the DuraTech team members.”
DuraTech, which has more than 200 employees, provides decorative and functional identification products to Fortune 500 customers in the automotive, computer, electronic and medical fields, among others. DuraTech’s diverse portfolio of products and services enables the company to provide its customers with complementary components in custom-made packages.
The company was founded Galesville, Wisconsin, in 1977 and moved to La Crosse in 1979, where it has expanded twice since then. The company also has operations in Milwaukee, North Carolina and Beijing.
About the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation
The Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) leads economic development efforts for the state by advancing and maximizing opportunities in Wisconsin for businesses, communities and people to thrive in a globally competitive environment. Working with more than 600 regional and local partners, WEDC develops and delivers solutions representative of a highly responsive and coordinated economic development network. Visit www.inwisconsin.com or follow WEDC on Twitter @_InWisconsin to learn more.