LOUDON, Tenn. (WVLT) -- An Italian ceramic floor tile manufacturer plans to invest $70 million building a new manufacturing operation right here in east Tennessee, the Loudon Co. Economic Development Agency (EDA) announced on Wednesday. The new facility expects to bring 178 jobs to the area.
"Loudon County welcomes Del Conca to East Tennessee with this opportunity to bring a substantial volume of high-quality jobs and positive economic impact to this region," said Loudon County EDA President Pat Phillips.
"We thank Del Conca for selecting Loudon County and appreciate the support from our state, regional and local partners in facilitating this exceptional opportunity for our community and region."
As its first U.S. headquarters, the new 320,000 square-foot facility will serve as Del Conta's base of operations, housing manufaturing, research, and administrative capabilities as well as a showroom. It will be built on a 30 acre plot of land at the Sugarlimb Industrial Park in Loudon.
“Loudon is geographically located close to the main U.S. highways and in close proximity to our sources of raw materials. We have found in Loudon a very cooperative team of people who are working hard in order to help us build a successful business that better serves our U.S. and Canadian customers,” said Paolo Mularoni, president of Del Conca USA.
The EDA said Del Conta plans on expediting its production timeline and hopes to have the first phase of construction completed by this time next year. At that point, the company expects to have 100 full-time workers.
The second phase will take another five or six years, during which time Del Conta plans to hire 78 more full-time employees.
“This announcement is great news for Loudon County, and I am excited to welcome Del Conca to Tennessee,” Gov. Bill Haslam said. “We are very appreciative of the investment in our state as we work toward our goal of becoming the No. 1 location in the Southeast for high quality jobs.”
The EDA estimated the jobs will have an average hourly wage of $17 an hour, plus benefits.