Tadano is investing $2.5 million to expand its Mantis crawler crane plant in Richlands, Virginia, adding at least 25 new jobs.
Mantis is based in Franklin, Tennessee, and apparently considered adding capacity in either of its two locations, but chose Virginia which offered a number of grants and other financial aid.
The announcement of the expansion was jointly made by Virginia’s governor Terry McAuliffe and Tadano’s Shiro Morita. McAuliffe said, “I am thrilled to announce this win for Tazewell County, creating 21st century jobs in sectors like advanced manufacturing is critical for diversifying the industrial base and building a new Virginia economy, and we are proud that Tadano Mantis is a part of our efforts.”
Morita- chief operating officer of Tadano Mantis – added: “We are very
excited about our Richlands plant expansion. We can hire more workers from local communities. We can have more suppliers and vendors locally, too. We are looking forward to seeing the completion of this expansion as soon as possible.”
Support for the state aid came from the Virginia Economic Development Partnership, the Tazewell County Industrial Development Authority, and the Virginia Coalfield Economic Development Authority which approved $140,000 of funding, while the Governor’s Opportunity Fund donated $100,000 to assist Tazewell County with the project.
The company is also eligible to receive state benefits from the Virginia Enterprise Zone Program, administered by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development, while employee training grants will be provided through the Virginia Jobs Investment Program.
Doyle Rasnick, chairman of the Tazewell County Industrial Development Authority said: “We are very excited for Tadano Mantis as they embark on an expansion that will bring more skilled jobs to our county. They have a product that is not only being sold in the USA, but also expanding throughout the world. Our board has taken pleasure in working with them and helping them get to this point and will continue to work even more closely as they grow in the future.”
Virginia senator Benton Chafin also got a word in, saying: “The new investment by Tadano Mantis Corporation is a big step forward in bringing much-needed manufacturing jobs to Tazewell County. Manufacturing is a key factor to economic growth and helping the citizens of Southwest Virginia find new jobs.”
Mantis telescopic crawler cranes were launched in 1979 after the manufacturing company Spandeck acquired the rights to the Turtle Telescopic cranes and introduced a nine and 11.9 tonne models. The company went on to introduce further models and also entered the special mobile cranes for re-railing and recovering locomotives as well as a number of other special heavy duty cranes.
Spandeck was acquired by Tadano from the Mitchell family in December 2008, and is gradually being integrated in to the business. The crawler crane line now ranges from 27 to 120 tonnes.
The company headquarters in Franklin is on the southern outskirts of Nashville, the plant in Richlands, is a quiet relatively remote town in the mountains of south west Virginia.