Austria-based Lenzing AG will invest $293 million to expand production at its fibers plant in Mobile, Alabama. The company plans to hire 163 associates during the next three years.
The Mobile County factory was the first commercial operation in the world to produce and market Lyocell, an eco-friendly, botanic fiber used in clothing and nonwoven products. The expansion project will add a second manufacturing facility for Lyocell.
“The expansion will more than double current Tencel production in Axis, making it the largest production site in the world, with a total capacity of 140,000 tons annually,” said Kevin Allen, Site Manager of the Lenzing Alabama plant.
“We are very proud to have in Axis the first-generation production site and now the most advanced, state-of-the-art facility in the same location,” he added.
Robert van de Kerkhof, the company’s Chief Commercial Officer, said the project represents a “unique milestone” for the Axis facility and for the Lenzing, Austria-based industrial group, which has operations worldwide.
“Austria’s Lenzing is an innovative manufacturer with a longtime presence in Mobile County, Alabama, the home of its only U.S. production facility,” said Greg Canfield, secretary of the Alabama Department of Commerce.
“This significant new investment in its Mobile County operation will not only create jobs but also strengthen the partnership we have forged together over the years,” he added.
Troy Wayman, Vice President of Economic Development for the Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce, said, “This type of foreign direct investment and the addition of these high-wage jobs is yet another example of our manufacturing growth that continues to outpace the national rate,” Wayman said.