By Samuel Mattison
Alabama Political Reporter
A Milwaukee-based company announced on Monday its intentions to start production on a new line of engines at its factory in Auburn.
Briggs & Stratton, a gasoline engine manufacturer, will produce big block V-twin engines starting in 2018 and bring about 50 permanent jobs to the plant.
The company is one of the largest in Auburn with a few hundred employees already at the plant. It has been in Auburn for about two decades. It’s recent investment in Auburn is part of a related project in Georgia, where the company has a similar plant.
Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey made the announcement Monday in a statement from her press office.
She called the company a “valuable, longtime member of Alabama’s business community” and said the decision is a “testament to the strong partnership” between the company and Alabama.
“I’m committed to creating an ideal environment for commerce and letting the world know that Alabama is open for business,” Ivey said in a statement.
Auburn Mayor Bill Hams expressed similar sentiments saying that he was “grateful” that the company continues to invest in Auburn.
“The contributions to our economy and the lives of our citizens cannot be overstated,” Hams said. “From providing jobs to helping fund our annual Fourth of July fireworks display for many years running, they are an outstanding corporate member of the community.”
David Rodgers, an executive in the company, said the move was important to the company’s growth strategy.
“We see this as a strategic competitive advantage because we can manufacture closer to our customers in the U.S., resulting in faster production times and faster shipping,” Rodgers said. “I’d like to thank Daihatsu Motor Company for being a great partner for the past 30 years and for their continued commitment to assisting with a smooth transition.”
The plant will start production of the new engine next year.