Local leaders and Gov. Steve Beshear celebrated a new beginning for a now vacant building in the Winchester-Clark County Industrial Park Monday morning — a development that will create 30 new full-time jobs.
Taica North American Corporation, a Japanese manufacturing company that makes cubic printing for the automobile industry, will refurbish and lease the former Gecom building in the Industrial Park.
It will be the company’s first manufacturing location in North America, said Todd Denham, executive director of the Winchester-Clark County Industrial Authority. The building is approximately 61,000 square feet, and it has been vacant for two years.
“Now we’re gathered here today in this empty building to celebrate. To celebrate the fact that this empty building will no longer be a reminder of our recent past history,” Denham said, at a ceremony inside the building. “No longer will we have memories of the sights and sounds of jobs that used to be, but the hope and promise of jobs that will be. So today we celebrate a new beginning for this building, a new tenant, new jobs and our newest manufacturer, Taica.”
About three months ago, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority approved a proposal that will give Taica $500,000 in state tax incentives, for choosing to invest $8 million to locate to the facility in Winchester.
To receive the full tax credit from the state, Taica will create 30 full-time jobs with an average hourly pay of $20 with benefits. Denham said the company will move into the building in October or November 2012.
Beshear called Monday a celebration for not only Winchester and Clark County, but for the entire commonwealth.
“Back in May, I had the honor of visiting Japan to meet with numerous Japanese officials from numerous Japanese companies who were interested in investing in Kentucky,” Beshear said. “Today, partly as a result of those talks and many follow-up conversations, we welcome one of those businesses, Taica North American Corporation, as it announces its first operation in Kentucky right here in Winchester.”
State Rep. Donna Mayfield said it was wonderful that Taica has chosen Clark County as a place to expand its business.
"It will provide new jobs for Clark County, which is a wonderful economic development for this community," she said. "We certainly welcome them here."
Denham presented Eiji Takano, president and CEO of Taica North American Corporation, with an original painting of the Kentucky River in Clark County done by local artist Phil May. The painting was wrapped in a green bow.
“And as I understand, green in your culture is a sign of health and eternity, so we hope that your business continues to grow and prosper and be healthy and stay here for an eternity,” Denham said.
Takano spoke about Beshear’s visit to Tokyo and said he and Taica officials were looking forward to establishing a long-lasting partnership with the government of Kentucky and its people.
Taica’s management and employees are committed to being “good corporate citizens of Winchester,” he said.
“Taica Chairman Tsuyoshi Suzuki commented during his meeting with Governor Beshear that he was feeling like the father of a daughter who was going to be married, and he hoped that the daughter would learn the family rules and customs,” Takano said. “. ... and become a very good wife and a member of the Kentucky family.”
Contact Katie Perkowski at kperkowski@winchestersun or follow her on Twitter, @TheSunKatie.