Industrial products manufacturer Gardner Denver Inc. will consolidate its Thomas Products Division to the company's facilities in Monroe, Louisiana, where it will expand operations and hire up to 230 new employees, according to Louisiana economic development officials. The company will move the Thomas Products group from its current Wisconsin location and add 124,000 square feet to the existing Monroe facility to accommodate the move. The new positions will pay an average annual salary of $37,000 plus benefits. In a company statement, Gardner Denver officials say the move is expected to be completed by March 31, 2010. "Although a number of factors influenced the decision to consolidate production in Monroe, our primary focus was to ensure the long-term competitiveness of the business by continuing to drive cost and inefficiencies out of the operations, while increasing our flexibility through the implementation of the Gardner Denver Way," says Barry Pennypacker, Gardner Denver's president and CEO. "In the long term, we believe this consolidation positions us with the best business solution and is in the best interests of Gardner Denver and its shareholders." State officials say the Illinois-headquartered company will receive incentives of up to $9 million, including reimbursement of most of its relocation costs, as well as payroll and sales tax rebates and training assistance, along a discounted lease rate at the Monroe facility.