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Alliance Laundry Systems Expands With Manitowoc, Wisconsin, Plant

Alliance Laundry Systems, the global leader in commercial laundry equipment, purchased the former Manitowoc Crane Company plant in Manitowoc, Wisconsin.

The more than 330,000-square-foot Manitowoc location will be used to help grow production at the Ripon facility.

According to company officials, “like many companies, Alliance has battled to fill openings amid a tight labor market and a particularly competitive Fox Valley area. In addition, the move will create up to 250 positions, helping boost the Manitowoc economy and re-open the now-shuttered plant.”

The nearly $30 million project, which will also include upgrades to the Ripon facility, will drive toward 2025 production goals and transition into a highly efficient world-class manufacturing plant, officials said.

"Today marks an exciting new chapter in our company's 111-year history," said Mike Schoeb, CEO of Alliance Laundry Systems. "By shifting some functions to the new facility, we will be able to grow high value production locally and increase the output of this factory with additional job creation in both communities. This truly is a win for Ripon, Manitowoc and Alliance Laundry Systems."

The move is not intended to reduce positions in Ripon, officials explained, as staff will be redeployed elsewhere in the facility. Alliance will begin hiring for the Manitowoc facility immediately and all jobs will be United Steel Workers positions with pay and benefits aligned with the Ripon location.

"Despite expansions through the years, our Ripon plant is capped out and struggles to remain fully staffed up. This means excessive overtime and a poor work-life balance for employees," said Brad Nye, Vice President of Manufacturing for Alliance Laundry Systems.

"As we anticipate significant increased demand for the high-quality Ripon products, we had to find a way to drive efficiency, increase production and maintain our commitment to our team members along with the Ripon community," Nye added. "We needed to do this against the backdrop of achieving 2025 goals. This plan is a critical component that enables us to unlock the potential of the Ripon plant – growing jobs and production toward our vision of creating a world-class manufacturing facility that fully leverages technology by 2025."

"We are excited to welcome Alliance Laundry Systems to our area after months of negotiations to facilitate the successful purchase of the former Manitowoc Crane building, said Peter Wills, Executive Director of Progress Lakeshore, which helped Alliance with negotiations. "The purchase of this property by a large industrial manufacturer is significant in moving the community forward after the loss of a major employer in 2016."

Manitowoc Mayor Justin Nickels said the arrival of Alliance Laundry Systems is positive news for his community and Manitowoc County as a whole.

"Today, we can see our always resilient community step back up thanks to Alliance's announcement to occupy a large Manitowoc company facility and bring many good-paying jobs back to Manitowoc. Most important, we are thrilled that Alliance is dedicated to giving back to their communities," Nickels said.

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