GE to open new locomotive plant in Texas

Posted: 12 May 2011 | | No comments yet

GE Transportation, announced that it intends to open a new locomotive manufacturing facility in Fort Worth, Texas, to meet accelerating global demand…

GE Texas Plant

GE Transportation, the world’s leading maker of rail and transportation products, announced today that it intends to open a new locomotive manufacturing facility in Fort Worth, Texas, to meet accelerating global demand. GE will invest up to $96 million in the new plant and will create more than 500 new high-tech manufacturing jobs. GE also announced that it will expand its manufacturing workforce at its Erie, Pennsylvania, plant by hiring an additional 250 workers.

GE Texas PlantGE will build a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility to manufacture, assemble and remanufacture GE’s leading rail and transportation-related products, including GE’s most fuel-efficient locomotives todate. Production is scheduled to start by 2012. The 900,000- square-foot facility under consideration is located in Fort Worth, Texas.

“GE Transportation is experiencing strong U.S. and global growth because of its technical leadership and we need to increase our manufacturing capacity and flexibility,” said GE Chairman and CEO Jeffrey Immelt. “This new state-of-the-art plant in Fort Worth, Texas will produce the world’s most advanced locomotives and transportation products, expand our service and repair capability, and create hundreds of new high-tech manufacturing jobs.”

“Texas continues to attract employers of all sizes that are looking to create jobs and grow their business thanks to our low taxes, reasonable and predictable regulatory climate, fair legal system and skilled workforce,” said Texas Governor Rick Perry. “This investment in Fort Worth will continue to strengthen the economy in North Texas and in our state, creating jobs and prosperity for hundreds of Texans.”

“Bringing more high-tech manufacturing jobs to Fort Worth is good news for the community and the people who live here,” said Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison. “GE has chosen well in 2 deciding to locate its new plant in Denton County. The area’s highly trained workforce and strong business climate make it a prime location for these types of skilled jobs.”

“Texas is proud to welcome General Electric’s new rail- and transportation-related equipment project to our state,” said Senator John Cornyn. “If there’s one thing GE and Texans have in common, it’s the know how to create jobs. Texas is budding with potential for growth and this new high-tech manufacturing plant in Fort Worth will be a welcome addition to our growing economy.”

“GE Transportation’s announcement this morning is great news for North Texas,” said Congressman Michael C. Burgess. “The GE Transportation plant will produce rail and transportation-related equipment, including locomotives, and will include a financial investment by GE of up to $96 million to build this state of the art manufacturing facility. Opening a new high-tech manufacturing plant in Fort Worth will create more than 500 jobs by 2012, with the potential for additional jobs in subsequent years. Right now, America needs more jobs and Texas continues to create job opportunities though its job friendly regulatory regime and no state individual income tax.”

“On behalf of the Commissioners Court I am pleased to welcome GE Transportation to Denton County,” said Denton County Commissioner Andy Eads. “The City of Fort Worth, the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce and Denton County worked together to bring GE to our communities. This expansion into North Texas will be an economic engine for our region, create hundreds of skilled jobs, and continue to diversify the workforce in the Alliance corridor of Fort Worth.”

“GE is considered one of the most admired companies in the world,” said Bill Thornton, President and CEO of Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce. “GE provides excellent and highly desirable jobs in our community. This announcement significantly adds to the broad-base of quality manufactures that already call Fort Worth home.”

“We are excited to expand our operational footprint in the United States to better serve our customers,” said Lorenzo Simonelli, President and CEO of GE Transportation. “We see robust growth in the U.S. and around the globe. A new site will help us to effectively respond to the cyclical demand in the transportation industry and to strengthen our overall position.”

Added Simonelli: “The new site will increase our productivity and flexibility while complementing our North American manufacturing operations. We’re also strengthening our Erie site by adding 250 production workers.”

GE anticipates launching its formal hiring process for both salaried employees and production workers for the Texas facility later this year. Production workers include welders, assemblers, painters and related skilled labor. GE Transportation will create more than 500 new high-tech manufacturing jobs in Texas by 2012 with the potential of up to 275 additional jobs in subsequent years.

The proposed location in Fort Worth will become final upon conclusion of pending local approval. The State of Texas will commit up to $4.2 million in incentives toward the project through the Texas Enterprise Fund (TEF). GE Transportation’s new manufacturing site in the U.S. will complement its existing manufacturing operations in North America. With market conditions improving, GE Transportation has recalled approximately 800 production workers at its Erie manufacturing facility since late 2010 and announced 450 new jobs since April (including those announced today). In total, more than 4,500 employees work at the Erie facility, including approximately 3,000 production workers. GE Transportation operates at more than 50 GE and customer facilities in the United States.

GE employs approximately 9,000 individuals in the state of Texas. GE companies contribute more than $800 million in form of payroll and benefits to the state’s economy annually.

GE Transportation recently reported $903 million in first-quarter revenues, up 18% year-overyear. Segment profits for the same period were $157 million, up 37% year-over-year. GE Transportation received $938 million of orders in the first quarter demonstrating both technology leadership and product innovation. GE Transportation is the maker of the Evolution® Series locomotive. It reduces fuel use by 5 percent or approximately 640,000 gallons over the lifetime of the locomotive, while reducing emissions by approximately 40 percent. The Evolution Series locomotive is one of GE’s most prominent ecomagination products. Ecomagination is a GE-wide business strategy that is helping to meet customer demand for more energy-efficient products, while generating profitable growth for the company. Currently, approximately 17,000 GE locomotives are in use in more than 50 countries around the world, including more than 4,100 Evolution Series locomotives.

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