Global Fastener News

2011 FIN – State Program Aided First New U.S. Hot Forming Facility in 40 Years

September 08
00:00 2015

May 4, 2011 FIN – A Michigan program to train new employees contributed to Dokka Fasteners decision to build the first new hot forming facility in the U.S. in 40 years, the Daily Tribune reports.
Dokka Fasteners CEO Marc Strandquist told the Tribune that training opportunities at nearby Oakland Community College were the defining factor why his company chose to locate its 100,000 sq ft manufacturing facility in Michigan rather than Indiana, Illinois and Missouri.
In 2010 Dokka established its first hot forming fastener manufacturing facility in North America to supply the growing U.S. wind energy market. The site is a state-of-the-art fastener facility featuring a fully automated manufacturing process — something parent company Würth called “the first of its kind in the U.S.”
The $20 million robotic hot forming manufacturing facility replicates the high-tech process found in the facility of Dokka Norway — an industry leader in providing wind energy fastener products for over two decades.
New employee training opportunities are part of the Michigan New Jobs Training program, an incentive passed by the state Legislature in 2008. The program allows community colleges to collect the income taxes of those new employees to pay for the training.
OCC reportedly works with individual companies to win contracts for training a specific number of new employees.
Strandquist said the ability to “train a workforce from the ground up” on brand-new equipment made a huge difference, according to the Tribune.
“We’ve hired 25 people so far and I’m really proud that 12 people were on unemployment at the time we hired them, so we’ve been able to take people off the unemployment roll,” stated Strandquist.
Auburn Hills-based Dokka — a Würth Group company — will utilize the program to hire and train a total of 76 workers to produce fasteners for the wind energy market. The $950,000 training costs are covered by the state’s incentive program.
“In terms of what we’re going to do here, we do hot forming — heating metal up before forming it — and we’re the first all new hot-forming facility in the U.S. in over 40 years,” Strandquist said.  ©2011/2015 Fastener Industry News.
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