Before a packed room of local elected officials, representatives from the governor’s office and area business leaders, the Economic Development Coalition of Asheville-Buncombe County announced today that Nypro will expand its Asheville plant with an $83 million investment in facilities and equipment. The move is expected to bring 156 new high-wage production and engineering jobs to the area; Nypro operates operates in 15 countries and makes precision plastics for the healthcare, consumer, electronics, and packaging markets.
“What a great day…what a game-changing moment this may be for this community,” said County Commissioner K. Ray Bailey, who also serves as chairman of the EDC. “They’re securing valuable advanced manufacturing employment in Buncombe County for the next generation.” Bailey introduced Joe Freitas, general manager of Nypro’s Asheville plant, to a standing ovation.
“I came here this morning…I didn’t expect this at all,” said Freitas. He went on to thank officials with Governor Beverly Perdue‘s office, the staff of the EDC and his own staff at Nypro. “We’re talking about $83 million in capital investment coming into our county,” Freitas continued. “I’ve got 33 injection molding machines we’ll be bringing in, a [new] 75,000 square foot facility…and of course, the biggest part of it, we’ll be bringing in 156 new jobs over the next three years,” he said to sustained applause.
“Do you ever get the impression and the feeling that you’re sick of people saying that manufacturing in America is over?” asked David Gantt, chairman of the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners, “Because you’re showing us it’s not…what Nypro is doing today is putting that notion to bed forever. When we speak of the strength and ingenuity of American manufacturing, when we speak about corporate leaders who get it…who are making the investments and creating jobs that are leading to the recovery of our country, we think about Nypro.”
Congressman Heath Shuler, who was also on hand for the announcement, had high praise for Nypro, the EDC and the Chamber: “It takes a team to make this happen,” said Shuler.
— Story and photos by Michael Muller, staff reporter.