By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey announced during her Tuesday’s State of the State speech that Kimber Manufacturing Inc., a leading U.S. firearms manufacturer, has finalized plans to open a production facility in Troy, Alabama, where it will create 366 jobs and invest $38 million into the local economy over the next five years.
“News of our economic successes seem to be a daily occurrence,” Gov. Ivey said. “In fact, I am proud to announce this evening that Kimber Firearms will build a $38 million dollar production facility in Troy, bringing with it 366 new jobs! These are good, high-paying jobs, and will enable more of our citizens to provide for their families while taking part in the rich history of the Second Amendment. We are proud and honored to welcome Kimber to Alabama! This announcement and countless others like it make one thing clear: what we are doing is working, and as a result, the people of Alabama are working and providing for their families.”
“With talented Alabamians already manufacturing a wide range of high-quality products that are in demand around the globe, the state can offer Kimber an ideal business environment and a skilled workforce for its expansion project,” Ivey said in a statement. “Kimber’s investment in Troy will create a significant number of high-paying design engineering and manufacturing jobs, and we are committed to helping the company find long-lasting success in Alabama.”
Kimber was once a small manufacturing company based in Yonkers, New York. Kimber has grown rapidly over the past 21 years. The new manufacturing facility in Troy will be Kimber’s sixth U.S. location.
“We are pleased with the impressive track record that Alabama has with attracting and retaining world-class manufacturing companies,” said Kimber’s president and chief executive officer, Leslie Edelman. “Growing our company intelligently depends significantly on being in the right manufacturing environment, and in Troy, we have a community dedicated to our long-term success. It has been a pleasurable and fruitful experience working with Mayor Jason Reeves and his team.”
Greg Grogan, Kimber’s chief operating officer, said that the company will build a large, automated, state-of-the-art design engineering and manufacturing facility in Troy to support Kimber’s strategic growth plans.
“Troy offers us expansion with a passionate workforce, extraordinarily low utility costs, a pro-business environment, experienced local training support, and long-term incentives from the state and local government alike,” Grogan said. “This expansion in conjunction with our existing manufacturing facilities, talented and experienced employees, and best-in-class products provides for exciting times here at Kimber.”
James Cox, Kimber’s chief financial officer, said an unprecedented growth in demand for Kimber products is driving the company to increase its manufacturing capacity. “As we continue to move into uncharted waters in regards to Kimber product demand, it was important to us to build a facility that will allow us to secure a significant new plateau of capacity.”
Kimber’s new design engineering and manufacturing facility in Troy is expected to be fully operational in early 2019.
“Kimber is a first-class firearms manufacturer with a reputation for precision craftsmanship, dependability and accuracy, which makes it just the kind of high-performance company we want to attract to the state,” said Commerce Secretary Greg Canfield. “We look forward to Kimber joining the ranks of great manufacturers that are growing and thriving in our state.”
“It is the realization of a long-term goal for the City of Troy and for me personally to see a firearms manufacturing company with a stellar brand like Kimber creating jobs and investing in the community,” Troy Mayor Jason Reeves said. “Troy has a strong manufacturing base, and Kimber will substantially add to that foundation.”
Economic developer, Nicole Jones, told the Alabama Political Reporter, “Alabama is growing, and Troy is growing, because companies recognize that we have a quality and skilled workforce, which is the number one criterion firms identify during the site selection process. Kimber’s $38 million dollar investment demonstrates confidence in Troy’s business climate. The city of Troy has a strong manufacturing base, which helps create an environment conducive for the world’s fifth largest producer of handguns to succeed. The 366 design-engineering and manufacturing jobs created as a result of Kimber’s sixth location within the United States will provide wages Alabamians can live on with a company that recognizes our state’s appreciation of second amendment rights.”
“It is estimated that every one high-paying primary job creates 2.5 secondary/service jobs, which means that more people will be employed and spending money in and around the city of Troy as a result of the Kimber manufacturing facility,” Jones explained. “Congratulations, Troy and Pike County, on this win, and thank you to Kimber for your investment and commitment to our community.”
“When I meet with global CEOs of companies considering Alabama, or who already have companies here, they tell me their Alabama facility operates at a level that cannot be rivaled,” Gov. Ivey said. “My fellow Alabamians, that is because of you, — the hard-working people of Alabama. Companies choose Alabama because of your dedication and our skilled workforce. When a company invests in Alabama, it is investing not just in our state, but in you, our people.”
Remington recently built a new gun manufacturing plant here in Alabama.