CHICAGO – Governor Bruce Rauner joined Flex-N-Gate CEO Shad Kahn and the City of Chicago to announce Flex-N-Gate is expanding to Chicago’s south side, creating 286 jobs and investing nearly $30 million investment in the local economy.
“Flex-N-Gate is one of our state’s premier manufacturers, and we are excited about their expansion in the Land of Lincoln,” Governor Rauner said. “This plant represents what is possible for every community in every part of our state. Despite the current climate, we’ve had some success in growing manufacturing jobs in Illinois in places like Rockford, Bloomington and downstate. But we can and must do better.”
The new facility will lease a 288,000 square-foot existing warehouse in January 2018, and transform the warehouse into a new automotive manufacturing operation. The modern facility will provide supplies to Ford’s Chicago Assembly Plant and is located within one mile of the plant.
“The U.S. automotive industry is strong, and that’s also true here today in my beloved state of Illinois and in the great City of Chicago,” Khan said. “We fully anticipate that our future operation here will be a difference-maker for Flex-N-Gate, Ford Motor Company, the automotive industry and workers here in the Chicago area. None of it would be possible, however, without our shared vision and efficient collaboration with industry and public officials. Today’s announcement is proof that when everyone determines to work together, we can create great things and excellent jobs.”
Flex-N-Gate is an Illinois company and headquartered in Urbana. It was most recently ranked as the tenth-largest original equipment supplier in North America by Automotive News. With the Chicago expansion, the total number of Flex-N-Gate jobs based in Illinois will grow to 1,000. It also employs more than 10,000 people at facilities around the country, including one in Danville.
“There is nothing better than seeing an Illinois company continue to expand and invest within our state,” said Illinois Department of Commerce Director Sean McCarthy. “Flex-N-Gate’s expansion is not only great news for the south side of Chicago, but for the entire state of Illinois. This project will bring cutting-edge technology, good paying jobs and opportunity that will propel our economy forward.”
The state has offered a combination of EDGE tax credits and enterprise zone credits and has pledged to work collaboratively with Flex-N-Gate and the city on workforce development support.
“Flex-N-Gate has been a part of Illinois since its beginnings in Urbana in 1956, and will soon employ 1,000 people across Illinois. It is our pleasure to work alongside a company who continues to make an additional commitment to the state, and to support the kind of growth and expansion that benefits all Illinoisans,” said President of Intersect Illinois Andria Winters. “These businesses are the heartbeat of Illinois and we value their commitment to our state and our citizens.”
The Rauner Administration has made job creation one of its top priorities and made changes to make it easier to attract business and grow jobs in Illinois. One of those initiatives is the creation of the non-profit economic development corporation Intersect Illinois. Intersect works with employers to recruit companies to the state, already securing commitments from companies like Flex-N-Gate; Amazon (creating more than 7,000 jobs); Rivian Automotive (creating 1,000 jobs) and Vetter Pharmaceuticals (creating 300 jobs).