Futamura USA, who has acquired the cellophane business from Innovia Films, plans to increase the production in the Tecumseh facility by over 60 percent by moving production from Japan to Kansas. The production increase will require Futamura USA to invest up to $30 million into the Topeka/Shawnee County community for infrastructure improvements, equipment and new manufacturing lines. In addition, up to 28 new jobs will be created at its current facility, which combined provides an estimated economic impact of over more than $21 million to the community.
“JEDO is very encouraged to have Futamura USA invest $30 million into the facility and equipment at the former Innovia Films Inc. plant,” said Commissioner Shelly Buhler, JEDO chair. “This investment, along with the 28 new jobs, will solidify the future of this facility in our community.”
“We would like to express our gratitude for your support. Our company’s policy is contributing to those nations and communities through the manufacture and use of our products,” said Gen Sato, president Futamura USA. “We stand on a principle that our company exists to enhance the daily lives of our employees, rather than one that exists and belongs to its shareholders.”
"By making this significant capital investment in our community, the company is not only reinforcing its commitment to its employees by renovating its facility, but also affirming Topeka is an optimal location for operating a global business from the central United States,” said Matt Pivarnik, CEO and president of GO Topeka and the Greater Topeka Chamber of Commerce.
"We have had a long-standing partnership with representatives of the Tecumseh plant and we are thrilled with their decision to expand their operations in our market,” said Scott Griffith, chairman of GO Topeka Board of Directors. “As the only North American provider of cellophane, the local plant is an integral part of Futamura USA’s overall operations and a critically important part of our economy. We look forward to our continued working relationship and future expansions at the facility."
JEDO approved an incentive grant for up to $206,000, not to exceed $28,000 per year, at its May 18, 2016, meeting. Innovia Films currently employs more than 170 employees. The grant will be used to assist with facility improvements and in hiring and training new employees.
"Topeka has many attributes that make it a desirable place in which to conduct business and we appreciate Futamura USA for making the decision to modernize its plant here,” said Mayor Larry Wolgast. “We understand that businesses have many options available to them when considering whether to expand or relocate, and it's gratifying to see so many recent announcements where strong companies that invest in our quality of life in northeast Kansas have chosen to remain here."
“The Tecumseh cellophane plant has been a part of the Topeka community for more than 55 years,” said Michael Basore, plant manager. “I am very grateful for the support that JEDO, GO Topeka and the State of Kansas have given our facility. This support has been instrumental in giving us the opportunity to be part of the community for another 50 years!”