Blum, Inc. executives were joined by Lincoln County officials Thursday (Feb. 14th) as they broke ground on a 62,000 sq. ft. expansion to their US headquarters.
The facility’s two-part expansion, estimated to cost $22.5 million was announced last year. The added space will increase warehouse capacity by 70%, creating approximately 30 new jobs. The company currently employs 431 full-time employees.
Blum, Inc. was established in 1977 in a small rented warehouse in Hickory. In the early years, Blum focused on developing customer relationships, and products were imported from Austria. Shortly thereafter, Blum moved to its current home on Old Plank Road just off Business Highway 16 at Lowesville in southeastern Lincoln County where the manufacturing of products in the United States began.
“We have continued expanding our efforts in the United States for more than forty years. These expansions to our facility ensure that we continue to provide excellent customer service in addition to showing our commitment to manufacturing in the US,” said Karl Rudisser, CEO & President of Blum, Inc.
The expansions mark the 10th and 11th additions to the building since it was first built in 1979 and will allow for greater efficiency and increased capabilities to respond better to specialty orders and requests.
Shipping and Receiving Expansion
Initially, a 16,000 square-foot addition to the east side of the building will create more space for staging orders for customers before shipping. A new office space for shipping and receiving personnel will be constructed. The expansion will also include a covered ramp and loading dock for truck drivers.
Automated Warehouse Expansion
A separate 46,000 sq.ft. expansion to the north side of the building will enlarge the automated high-bay warehouse for finished goods and components. It will feature six aisles and approximately 12,000 pallet locations. The building will stand 95 feet above ground, making it the tallest building in Lincoln County.
Both phases of the expansion are projected to be completed by summer 2020.
County Commissioners approved an Economic Incentive Grant for the Blum expansion last June. During the grant period, the County will refund a portion of Blum's property taxes when paid equal to the additional taxes due because of the expansion. When the grant period ends, the County will get additional tax revenue from Blum because of the added value of the expansion.
When the grant was approved, Dr. Jim Watson, now a member of the Lincolnton City Council and then chair of the Lincoln Economic Development Association Board, said he was pleased to see the company grow--adding more jobs and helping the local economy. “Blum first came to Lincoln County in 1979," he said. "Since that time they have been a tremendous corporate citizen that has grown in investments and workforce numerous times. This is great news and is an example of their continued success and commitment to our area.”
Blum, Inc. is a leading manufacturer of functional hardware for the kitchen cabinet and commercial casework industries specializing in lift systems, concealed hinges and drawer runner systems. Virtually all of the hardware needed to assemble and make cabinets functional is available within the wide range of quality Blum products. Blum supports the U.S. market with a network of more than 150 dependable distributors, 50+ knowledgeable Blum sales representatives and an experienced customer service department.
The Lincoln Economic Development Association is a private, 501-c(3) non-profit corporation charged with facilitating industrial and office development in Lincolnton and Lincoln County. LEDA’s mission is to foster an economic environment that promotes an enhancement of the standard of living by creating more and better jobs for the citizens of Lincolnton and Lincoln County and an increased and diversified tax base to provide needed community services. The organization’s goals include retention and expansion of existing business; attraction of diversified base industries, improvement of the overall business climate within Lincolnton and Lincoln County and the growth of stage two entrepreneurial companies.
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