RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - The following is a press release from the Office of Governor Bob McDonnell.
Governor Bob McDonnell today announced that IMS:GEAR Virginia, Inc., one of the largest manufacturers of gear assemblies for the North American automotive market, will invest $35.5 million to expand its operation in the City of Virginia Beach. The company, which manufactures metal and plastic gear assemblies used in automatic automotive seats, will create 80 new jobs. Virginia successfully competed against Georgia for the project.
Speaking about today's announcement, Governor McDonnell said, "IMS:GEAR Virginia has thrived in Virginia Beach since its establishment there in 2000. This significant investment will allow for a larger facility and an additional manufacturing line to support a growing customer base of Tier 1 automotive suppliers throughout North America. The company continues to be a strong corporate partner to the Commonwealth and a key component of the automotive industry niche that is present in Virginia."
"IMS:GEAR Virginia chose to expand its operation in Virginia Beach due to the quality of the workforce and the positive business environment that is prevalent across the Commonwealth," said Jim Cheng, Virginia Secretary of Commerce and Trade. "IMS is an impressive, worldwide company and we are proud that it has served North American automotive suppliers from Virginia for more than a decade. This expansion will enable the company to further expand its customer base and global footprint in the industry."
IMS:GEAR Virginia, Inc., is a subsidiary of IMS:GEAR GmbH, headquartered in Donaueschingen, Germany, with U.S. headquarters in Gainesville, Georgia. IMS:GEAR GmbH employs over 1,500 worldwide, and its Virginia operation reported sales of over $19.8 million in 2010. IMS:GEAR offers a wide range of products such as geared shafts, clamp-type pinions, cup-type pinions, bushings, motor flanges and output flanges.
"IMS:GEAR is proud to call Virginia Beach home of the production facility for horizontal drive mechanism for car seats," said Guenter Weissenseel, President IMS:GEAR Virginia, Inc. "We have been producing parts here for the last 11 years with the support of the people, City and the Commonwealth of Virginia. We are looking forward to growing as a company to provide work and prosperity to the local community."
The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with the City of Virginia Beach Department of Economic Development to secure the project for Virginia. Governor McDonnell approved a $200,000 grant from the Governor's Opportunity Fund to assist the City of Virginia Beach with the project. Governor McDonnell also approved a $300,000 performance-based grant from the Virginia Investment Partnership program, an incentive available to existing Virginia companies. Through its Virginia Jobs Investment Program, the Virginia Department of Business Assistance will provide funding and services to support the Company's recruitment and training activities.
"IMS:GEAR is one of the leading manufacturers of automotive gear assemblies in the world," said Will Sessoms, Virginia Beach Mayor. "The company had a very attractive opportunity to take this expansion out of Virginia, but because of the quality of our local work force and the overall positive business environment that exists in Virginia Beach, the City was able to provide a viable option for them. Of course, the help of Governor McDonnell and his team was critical to keeping these jobs in Virginia."