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Medical parts maker bringing 172 jobs to Mills River

MILLS RIVER — A German company that makes  polymer components for the medical industry plans to build a 60,0000-square-foot plant and bring 172 jobs to Broadpointe Industrial Park, the Henderson County Partnership for Economic Development announced today.

RAUMEDIC has about 580 employees and is part of the REHAU group, a polymer specialist that employs 18,000 people worldwide.

Code-named Project Granite when industry recruiters sought economic development incentives from the county Board of Commissioners and town of Mills River, the company began searching last year for a plant site and settled on a 10 acre parcel at Broadpointe Industrial Park off N.C. 280 south of the Asheville Regional Airport.

Total project investment will exceed $27.1 million, with at least $10.6 million of that amount slated for construction of a state-of-the-art clean room operation for medical device manufacturing. Henderson County, the Town of Mills River, the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina, the North Carolina Department of Transportation, the North Carolina Community College System and Duke Energy all partnered on the project to encourage RAUMEDIC's location, the county industry recruiting office said.

"We really fell in love with the area, and were convinced that the community partners that we met could deliver on our schedule for new construction and operation," Raumedic CEO Martin Bayer said in a news release. "Our new US production and headquarters will combine the strength of American & German engineering to offer high-precision extrusion, molding and assembly of medical and pharmaceutical grade polymer materials. For us, Henderson County provides an experienced and skilled workforce and the ideal business environment for our investment."

Headquartered in Germany, RAUMEDIC manufactures polymer components that are used in the medical and pharmaceutical industries.

"When companies consider coming to the area, we want to make sure that they will hire our people and make a product we are proud to say is 'Made in Henderson County',"  Henderson County Board of Commissioners Chairman Tommy Thompson said. "In addition to meeting all of these expectations, RAUMEDIC will have a significant employment impact, hiring 172 new positions over the next several years, and paying an average wage in excess of $55,000/year. This company will result in $9 million in new annual payroll that will ripple through our local economy."

"The NC General Assembly continues to work to improve North Carolina's competitive position. Businesses like RAUMEDIC that create great jobs, pay great wages and create new taxable investment have choices about where to do that. We're happy that after competing for this business, that RAUMEDIC has chosen Henderson County," said Senator Tom Apodaca.

The RAUMEDIC project will help encourage the completion of Broadpointe Drive in partnership with the NC Department of Transportation where a current gravel section and small bridge separates park tenants. Representative Chuck McGrady who met with the RAUMEDIC management team early on said, "one of the most compelling investments that North Carolina can make to encourage quality job creation is in our transportation infrastructure."

Dave Modaff, Chairman of the HCPED Board, was also part of the recruitment team that met with the company early on. "RAUMEDIC represents the alignment of two target clusters for the Partnership, both plastics and medical devices, in addition to joining many other successful German-headquartered manufacturing operations in Henderson County," he said.

Mayor Larry Freeman welcomed RAUMEDIC to Mills River, stating, "It is exciting to see continued quality employment opportunities in our area. All of us on Town Council are excited that RAUMEDIC has chosen Mills River for their first U.S. manufacturing location." RAUMEDIC will join some of the region's top employers as a tenant in the Broadpointe Industrial Park.

The Henderson County Partnership for Economic Development, Inc. is a 501(c)(6) organization that works to: retain and attract quality jobs; solicit new business compatible with the assets and values of Henderson County; promote Henderson County's business image; assist expansion of existing companies; and enhance Henderson County's overall quality of life. For more information on the Partnership visit www.strategiclocation.com, and for more information on Raumedic visit www.raumedic.com.