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Kronospan announces $350 million expansion in Oxford

This $350 million investment will create 125 new jobs.

Alabama Department of Commerce
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The Oxford City Council approved tax abatements for Kronospan’s new Oriented Strand Board (OSB) manufacturing  plant on its 460 acre site in Oxford at Thursday morning’s council meeting. This $350 million investment will create 125  new jobs. Upon completion, Kronospan will employ approximately 600 people with a total investment of over $1 billion  since beginning operations here in 2008. Groundbreaking for the new facility is slated for later this year. The Calhoun  County Commission is expected to approve their portion of tax abatements at this week’s commission meeting. 

“We’re very pleased to announce the next project at our Oxford site,” says Hans Obermaier, CEO of Kronospan’s North  American companies. “This is not only an opportunity to further expand our portfolio of wood panel products in the  United States but also meets our customers growing need for high quality construction materials. Just like the other  plants on our site, the OSB plant will be constructed with our sustainability principles in mind and will further enhance  our negative carbon footprint status.” 

Oxford Mayor Alton Craft says, “This latest investment by Kronospan pushes them over the $1 billion mark, and that  speaks for the quality and commitment from this company to our community. We are 100% behind them as they  continue to expand their capabilities and we are grateful that they consistently have chosen to do so right here in  Oxford. They creatively work in schools across the region to develop a talent pipeline to aid in recruiting their workforce. 

They have initiated the only forklift training program of its kind in this area. By continuing to see success in things such  as their forklift training program, the FAME program, regional classroom partnerships, and building community  relationships, we feel confident that work done by our city and our local schools in partnership with our industries are  steadily growing a strong, capable workforce right here in east Alabama. It has been our pleasure to work with  Kronospan and the Economic Development Council to make sure we continue to provide good quality jobs to this  region.” 

Capital projects of over $89 million USD have occurred in the last 6 months or are currently in progress at the Oxford site  and signal a strong commitment to Calhoun County and the surrounding area by the wood panel manufacturer. 

“Kronospan is very proud of our commitment to job creation in Calhoun County and East Alabama,” says John Connell,  Director of Human Resources at Kronospan. “As we continue to grow our operations in the U.S., we are very conscious  of the impact on our local communities and are consistent in our philosophy of creating a sustainable future for  generations to come.” 

Don Hopper is the executive director for the Calhoun County Economic Development Council and was instrumental in  the initial recruitment of Kronospan. “These industrial expansions are all about relationships, and in this case, it’s about  our long term relationship with Kronospan. The faces behind these expansion numbers are people with families who live  in this community and it humbles me to know that many of these faces are people I can now call my friends. I firmly  believe the greatest compliment a community can receive is when a company chooses again and again to expand their  facility in our backyard,” says Hopper. “Kronospan could have chosen to do this expansion at a variety of other locations  across the world, but they chose to expand again right here in Calhoun County. We believe that is largely because of the  relationships we have built with them. We want to thank our great partners the state of Alabama, the city of Oxford, and  Calhoun County for continuing to be pro-business and supporting us through industrial incentives.”

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The Alabama Political Reporter is a daily political news site devoted to Alabama politics. We provide accurate, reliable coverage of policy, elections and government.

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