Archive for Thursday, December 22, 2011

API Foils moving company headquarters from New Jersey to Lawrence

December 22, 2011


A New Jersey-based firm is moving its North American headquarters to Lawrence’s East Hills Business Park, and will be creating 17 new high-level jobs in the process.

API Foils — a company that makes the shiny foils used on greeting cards, high-end labels and other packaging — announced Thursday that it will move its corporate offices to its existing Lawrence production plant by June.

“It is a wonderful move because it helps solidify API’s presence in the community,” said Beth Johnson, vice president of economic development for the Lawrence Chamber of Commerce. “When you think of being home to a company’s headquarters, you know the company really has a strong interest in your community.”

API, which has been in Lawrence since 1995, has 52 employees at its plant at 3841 Greenway Circle. The 17 new positions will be a mix of transfers and hires from within the community, Johnson said, although an exact split isn’t yet available.

An average salary for the new positions also isn’t yet available, but many of the positions are expected to be above $50,000 a year, and will include the company’s chief executive officer, chief financial officer and various assistants. With the new additions, the average wage for all positions at the plant is expected to hit the $50,000 a year mark, Johnson said.

The company is making the move without a tax abatement or other financial incentives from Lawrence City Hall. The company, Johnson said, is receiving incentives from the state of Kansas, including various tax credits, training assistance and participation in the state’s PEAK program, which allows companies to retain up to 95 percent of the state payroll withholding tax on eligible employees.

An attempt to reach a spokesman with API on Thursday was not successful, but the company’s president and general manager said in a statement that several factors led to the company deciding to move its headquarters to Kansas.

“The Kansas business-friendly environment is very refreshing,” said Brad Mueller, president and general manager of API Foils Americas. “The skill and dedication of our workforce, the attractive cost profile, coupled with its central geographic location, make Lawrence an ideal location for our continued growth.”

Johnson said the project likely will involve a bout $200,000 worth of construction work at the Lawrence plant to accommodate additional office space.

Johnson also said the move may be a good sign that the company strongly will consider Lawrence for future production expansions. The company in 2007 qualified for a tax abatement for a planned $17 million expansion of its Lawrence production plant. But as the economy soured, the expansion — which was scheduled to add about 30 jobs — never happened and the company did not finalize the tax abatement process.

“Lawrence already is where they make a lot of their product, so this gets us excited about what this could lead to in the future,” Johnson said.


Richard Heckler 6 years, 4 months ago

Isn't it strange that taxpayer dollars are used to buy employers? Now the other community will have fewer jobs in a job market that republicans delivered.

Ms Johnson does not want to reveal the cost to taxpayers for that would be quite similar to transparency.

"The company in 2007 qualified for a tax abatement for a planned $17 million expansion of its Lawrence production plant. But as the economy soured, the expansion — which was scheduled to add about 30 jobs — never happened and the company did not finalize the tax abatement process. " ((( 30 jobs for $17 million = reckless spending)

Gov Brownback is blowing our public school dollars on corruption.

thinkagain 6 years, 4 months ago

Thanks API Foils America for joining us in this really great community. I highly recommend the local restaurants, the Arts Center, every event in South Park and the Parades!

signoflife 6 years, 4 months ago

The $17 Million is not the amount of the tax abatement. That is the amount AFI would have spent to expand their business. The abatement would make much of the $17M tax exempt, but the added revenue to the county would be taxed from increased production. The increased capacity also calls for 30 more people to work there to meet production needs. It all sounds pretty reasonable to me, no reckless spending there, just commitment to increase their business in the area.

Flap Doodle 6 years, 4 months ago

Welcome API, don't pay any attention to the whiny gits that hate new jobs in Lawrence.

Richard Heckler 6 years, 4 months ago

API Foils is a polluter

Tax abatements do not come for free but they do help sell real estate. Wouldn't all business owners love to have the assistance of we taxpayers to help sell their products.

What exactly was the tax abatement agreement?

Richard Heckler 6 years, 4 months ago

It is too bad Kansas must bribe jobs from other states to look successful for that definitely places other communities and employees in a difficult situation.

Why not be creative and start new industry such as the clean energy industry instead of always saying NO to those jobs? Clean energy is the future and there is money to be made all of which is available as we speak.

Meanwhile FYI:

(AP) TOPEKA, Kan. — Two companies announced plans Thursday to expand their operations and create new jobs in Kansas, while an Indian company said it would establish its first North American facility in the state.

The announcements by API Foils, Newell Rubbermaid and Prathista Industries Ltd. follow news a day earlier that OptumRx, a mail-service drug prescription company in Overland Park, would be expanding its operation.

"We are working hard to promote the benefits of Kansas as a great place for business," Kansas Department of Commerce Secretary Pat George said.

API Foils is moving its headquarters from New Jersey to Lawrence, bringing 17 new jobs to Kansas. The company manufactures hot stamping foils for the packaging, printing and embossing industries. API Foils employs 52 people at the production plant in Lawrence that it established in 1995.

Rubbermaid plans to invest $26 million in its Winfield plant in south-central Kansas, moving 200 jobs from Texas. The Winfield plant will add the production of outdoor refuse and home organizational products to the facility.

George said the news was validation of the Rubbermaid work force at the Kansas facility, which has been making water coolers since 1916, first out of metal and then plastic.

Gov. Sam Brownback said in a statement that the Rubbermaid expansion was a "much needed" boost to the Cowley County economy.

The company will also build a new 500,000 square-foot distribution center next to Winfield site. The expansion projects are scheduled to be completed in 2012.

Prathista Industries Ltd. of India announced Thursday that it would build a research and development center in Manhattan in partnership with Kansas State University, its first facility in the United States. The company manufactures animal health and fertilizer products.

Prathista also has operations in Uganda, the Philippines and the Netherlands and will create 10 research positions initially in Kansas, with the goal of adding 50 production jobs in the coming years.

George said the announcements reflect the administration's efforts to improve the Kansas economy.

"Our state has a lot to offer, but we must continue to focus in 2012 on policies that will promote more growth and allow us to compete," he said.

Brownback will propose a tax reform package in January when the 2012 Legislature begins. He has said he wants to reduce the state's marginal income tax rates to make Kansas more competitive with its neighbors in attracting businesses.

Flap Doodle 6 years, 4 months ago

Attribution? Plagiarism is killing the planet, don't you know? (from a source)

pace 6 years, 4 months ago

I am glad they are enlarging. It sounds like some technical and manufacturing jobs are going be here. We have an excellent work force, educated people with a good work ethic.
I hope they won't pollute. Farmland left a mess. I worry about Brownback stripping the KDHE in two parts. KDHE is suppose to protect us. I hope they haven't been completely neutered.
I like manufacturing jobs. We need good paying jobs, minimum wage won't bring home the bacon if you want to have a home too.

lunacydetector 6 years, 4 months ago

very smart. they bypass the local hippie contingency of no new jobs and get help from the state. a great way to bring capitalist jobs to our socialist town.

at least they didn't locate on property tax free university land.

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