Governor John Bel Edwards and the Louisiana Economic Development (LED) office tell MHProNews that Champion Home Builders Executive Wade Lyall announced “the company plans a $1.3 million capital investment to build manufactured homes in Leesville,” LA.
“Champion plans to create 200 new direct jobs with an average annual salary of $35,000, plus benefits,” the LED statement said. “Louisiana Economic Development estimates the project also will result in 218 new indirect jobs, for a total of 418 new jobs in Vernon Parish and the Central Louisiana region.”
The report says that the production center is expected to be open in early 2018.
“Manufacturing accounts for a substantial portion of Louisiana’s economic output, and we are happy to add Champion Home Builders to that roster,” Gov. Edwards stated. “Leesville and Vernon Parish will provide a good home for this national company, and the jobs created by this project will be filled by a talented workforce in Central Louisiana. Champion is a leader in its field. We congratulate the company on its continued growth, and welcome Champion to Louisiana.”
Industry, Corporate Context
Other producers are expanding and opening too. A recent report of another new production center breaking ground is linked here.
Earlier this year, Champion announced they were taking over a Skyline production center, see that story, linked here.
“This is a tremendous opportunity to produce Champion’s award-winning manufactured homes in Louisiana, the third-ranking state nationally in manufactured housing sales,” said Lyall, the Southern Region vice president for Champion. “We’re thrilled to serve the great people of Louisiana, as well as to tap into the impressive legacy of Leesville’s workforce. Without the hard work and support from the teams at Louisiana Economic Development and the City of Leesville, we wouldn’t have secured a new home in ‘the best hometown in the world.’”
To secure the project, LED states they offered Champion a competitive incentive package that includes the comprehensive solutions of LED FastStart®.
LED says they’re ranked as the No. 1 state workforce development program in the nation.
In addition, “Champion will receive an Economic Development Award Program grant of $500,000,” per the statement to the Daily Business News. “The company also is expected to utilize the state’s Quality Jobs and Industrial Tax Exemption programs.”
“I am very proud for the City of Leesville, as well as the surrounding communities,” Leesville Mayor Rick Allen said. “The jobs that this company will provide are desperately needed. We have worked to lease the Industrial Park, not to just anyone, but to partner with the right company. I truly believe that Champion Home Builders is the right company. They will provide stable, good-paying jobs that we so badly needed. The truth is that God has had his hand on the whole deal and He deserves the credit.”
“Champion Homes will be a great addition to Leesville and Central Louisiana,” said CEO Jim Clinton of the Central Louisiana Economic Development Alliance. “Congratulations and thanks to Louisiana Economic Development, Mayor Rick Allen and our other partners in Leesville and Vernon Parish who are so vital to making this happen. Champion joins a growing group of manufacturers in Central Louisiana where “We Make Good Stuff.’”
Champion Home Builders Snapshot
Per the joint release, “Founded in 1953, Champion specializes in a wide variety of manufactured and modular homes, park model RVs, and modular buildings for the multifamily, hospitality, senior, and workforce housing sectors. Champion started as a single manufacturing facility in rural Michigan and grew to offer factory-built housing and other structures throughout the U.S. and western Canada. The company operates 28 manufacturing facilities throughout North America and employs more than 5,200 people worldwide.” ## (News, analysis, context.)
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Submitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com.