The Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce honored 16 businesses with awards Tuesday night at the annual Targeted Business and Industry Banquet held at the Knicely Center. Bowling Green Metalforming received the top award of the evening, the John B. Holland Business of the Year Award.
The banquet is held each year in conjunction with Targeted Business and Industry Month in an effort to recognize and salute targeted businesses and industries throughout South Central Kentucky for their accomplishments. 2015 has been a banner year for South Central Kentucky, with announcements totaling $824 million in investments and the creation of 813 new jobs.
“Each year, the Targeted Business and Industry banquet is our opportunity to recognize the impact that targeted businesses in our region have on our community,” stated Chairman of the Chamber Board of Directors Tommy Adams. “We were pleased to have a great slate of winners tonight as well as some outstanding special recognitions. 2015 has truly been an outstanding year in South Central Kentucky, and we’re delighted to be able to celebrate those accomplishments here tonight.”
"As a graduate of Western Kentucky University, it is an honor to join the business leaders of Bowling Green in celebrating these winning companies that add so much to the health of the region," said Dan Pelino, General Manager, IBM Public Sector. "By convening, collaborating and crossing boundaries together, we can achieve greater economic vitality and value for the citizens of South Central Kentucky."
The John B. Holland Business of the Year, renamed in 2011 to honor Mr. Holland and his dedication to business success in the community, was awarded to Bowling Green Metalforming for their recent $261 million expansion announcement.
In attendance to accept the award from Bowling Green Metalforming was Mr. Matt Pollick, General Manager.
“I am pleased to accept this award on behalf of Bowling Green Metalforming,” said Matt Pollick, General Manager of Bowling Green Metalforming. “Our Bowling Green expansion is just the latest in a long string of expansions at our Tanspark facility, and we are excited about the opportunities it brings for our company. We are happy to call south central Kentucky home and look forward to continuing to grow here.”
Bowling Green Metalforming, is a division of Cosma International, an operating unit of Magna International, Inc. The m8anufacturing facility is a leader in the South Central Kentucky automotive industry, supporting companies such as General Motors Corvette Assembly Plant and Ford Motor Company in Louisville, and is the largest employers in the South Central Kentucky Area and the largest automotive supplier in the region. One of the original anchor tenants of the Transpark, the company has been the source of outstanding growth and success for a decade.
Since 2005, the company has seen five expansions, ultimately growing to over 950,000 square feet and 1,000 employees. The facility, situated on 132 acres, has remained the largest facility and largest employer in the Transpark since their initial investment of $80 million and creation of 800 jobs in the Transpark in 2005. Over the last decade, the company has invested over $244 million in the facility, which when combined with this year’s expansion means more than $500 million invested in South Central Kentucky since their opening.
With the 4th largest capital investment in the state and largest new jobs announcement in the state in 2015, Bowling Green Metalforming is not only a leader in the South Central Kentucky economy but statewide as well.
President’s Club Bronze Star Partner The Murphy Construction Group which includes Scott, Murphy and Daniel, Scott & Murphy, Inc. and Hartz Contracting sponsored this year’s Business of the Year Award.
The Chamber also presented awards in three other categories at the banquet:
- Business Expansion – Sponsored by President’s Club Bronze Star Partner Tennessee Valley Authority
- Newcomer – Sponsored by Quality Personnel
- Business Innovation – Sponsored by The Kentucky Innovation Network of Bowling Green
Business Expansion Awards – Sponsored by President’s Club Bronze Star Partner Tennessee Valley Authority
For South Central Kentucky companies that expanded operations in 2015, investing capital and creating jobs for local residents.
Bendix Spicer Foundation Brake, LLC
Bendix Spicer Foundation Brake LLC, a leader in commercial vehicle brake & safety systems, expanded operations at their Bowling Green plant in 2015 with an investment of $8.79 million and the creation of 90 new jobs. The investment includes implementation of state-of-the art manufacturing technology and supports its substantial new business growth.
Bluegrass Supply Chain Services
Bluegrass Supply Chain Services, a third party logistics provider headquartered in Bowling Green combined three existing locations into one centralized corporate office and warehouse, providing an additional 160,000 square feet of space. This expansion will bring a total investment of $5.185 million and 55 new jobs to the region.
KapStone Container Corporation
KapStone Container Corporation, an award-winning producer of corrugated and paper packaging, will expand their operations at their Bowling Green plant with the addition of new machinery and equipment and facility upgrades in order to increase production. The project will bring an investment of $4.5 million and the addition of up to 30 new jobs to South Central Kentucky.
Vector Horizon Technologies, LLC
Located in the WKU Small Business Accelerator, Vector Horizon Technologies LLC is focused on Clean Energy Technologies. At present 20 Engineers and Technical Resources are designing, developing, and producing Advanced Mechatronic Devices for Emission Control & Power Generation in the On-highway and Off-highway Commercial Vehicles, Industrial Automation, Life Sciences, and the Oil & Gas industries.
ProCom Heating, Inc
ProCom Heating a leader in the gas heating appliance industry was founded in 1996 and moved its operations to Bowling Green in May 2012. The company will expand its Bowling Green facilities to a total of 450,000 square feet by 2020. Additionally, the project will bring all of ProCom’s manufacturing and assembly from China to the U.S.
The complete project will bring a total of $19.1 million in capital investment and 37 new, full-time jobs to the region.
Trace Die Cast, Inc.
Trace Die Cast is a first and second tier supplier of aluminum die cast components and assemblies to the automotive industry. Significant customers include Ford, GM, BorgWarner, DMAX, GKN, and Allison Transmissions.
In 2015, Trace announced an expansion that brought a capital investment $8.5 million and created 20 new jobs.
Delta Faucet Company
“Delta Faucet Company is proud to be America’s faucet innovation leader offering consumers intuitive products and technologies to improve the way we experience water. A global organization, Delta incorporates smart thinking and consumer needs into its kitchen and bath faucets, shower heads, shower systems, toilets and related accessories. This year, Delta committed to a substantial investment to expand the Morgantown facility which resulted in more than sixty new employment opportunities.
Newcomer Awards – Sponsored by Quality Personnel
For companies that are new to South Central Kentucky and have announced a location here within the past 12 months.
Graham Packaging Company
In August of this year, Graham Packaging broke ground on a 245,000 square foot manufacturing facility in the South Central Kentucky Industrial Park that will directly supply blow molded plastic containers to Sun Products. Over the life of the project, the capital investment will reach $31.5 million and create 68 new jobs.
TMS Automotive LLC
TMS Automotive offers industrial clients a variety of specialized services including parts washing, rust inhibitor applications, parts sorting, packaging, warehousing & distribution, and minor contract assembly.
Earlier this year, TMS Automotive purchased Spec Building V in the Kentucky Transpark and will invest $5 million and create 38 new jobs for South Central Kentucky.
West Park Industries, Inc.
On March 16, 2015 in Morgantown, West Park Industries began with the assembly of novelty football helmets for Massachusetts-based Franklin Sports Company. Today, West Park Industries, Inc. specializes in the assembly and manufacturing of Automotive, Sports and Agricultural components and finished goods.
West Park Industries invested $235,000 and created 12 new jobs in South Central Kentucky.
Innovation Awards – Sponsored by The Kentucky Innovation Network of Bowling Green
For South Central Kentucky companies that—through product or process—best exemplify innovative leadership.
Eyeconic.TV, located in the WKU Small Business Accelerator housed in the WKU Center For Research and Development is the industry leader in point of sale media. Eyeconic.TV controls digital media in thousands of businesses all over the world, and operates multiple divisions specific to a variety of industries. Their Bowling Green showroom features their digital sign, menu, and touch screen kiosk options and is open to the public.
In addition to the traditional awards, the Chamber offered several special recognitions at the 2015 Banquet:
- Eric Keeling of the Warren County Area Technology Center for his contribution to career and technical education in support of targeted business and industry needs in Warren County.
- Holley Performance Products for being named 2015 Kentucky Association of Manufacturers’ Manufacturer of the Year
- Companies that invested in new processes, technology, or efficiencies that improved their businesses and grew our economy in 2015:
- General Motors $439 million
- Kiriu USA Corporation $2.1 million
- Bando USA, Inc. $1 million
- Solrac Corporation $1 million
- Final Finish $150,000
The Chamber would like to extend a special thank you to each of our sponsors for making the 2015 Business and Industry Banquet a success. In addition to the award sponsors listed above, the following Chamber partners sponsored a portion of the banquet:
- US Bank
- WKU Gordon Ford College of Business
- CGS Machine & Tool
- Gerald Printing
About the Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce:
Incorporated in 1935, the Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce is a 5-Star Accredited Chamber by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and was named the 2009 Chamber of the Year by the American Chamber of Commerce Executives. As the fourth largest chamber in Kentucky, the Chamber serves as a premier business advocate for its more than 1,100 partners and is the driving force for economic development in South Central Kentucky. Its primary goals are to promote growth and success in the business community, reaching its small business partners and those in large industries alike. With leadership programs, governmental relations projects, educational initiatives and involvement opportunities, the Chamber aims to support the community and its neighbors in order to enhance the business climate and continue to grow the region.