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Business on rise locally

Xavier Smith xsmith@lebanondemocrat.com • Updated Sep 4, 2014 at 8:00 AM

The Wilson County economy received a boost this past year and follows a trend that is happening throughout the state.

New entity filings, annual reports and name registrations all increased in the first four months of 2014 compared to the same period a year ago, according to a Tennessee report released earlier this year by the secretary of state’s office in conjunction with the University of Tennessee.

Tennessee registered 28,798 new entity filings and 199,523 annual report findings from April 2013 to April 2014. The results suggest economic growth for the state.

Wilson County contributed significantly to the middle Tennessee economy, as well as the Tennessee economy in 2013, which helped Tennessee to be named as Business Facilities 2013 State of the Year.

The county added more than 1.7 million square feet of new industrial and logistics space in 2013, according to the 2013 Joint Economic & Community Development Board report. 

Mt. Juliet became the home of Hollister Inc., employing more than 80 people. Hollister is a medical supplies company headquartered in Illinois. The 240,00-square-feet facility will serve as a fulfillment center for the company. 

CEVA Logistics also expanded into an additional 70,000-square-feet facility last year in Mt. Juliet.

Lebanon also contributed heavily to the Wilson County commerce in 2013.

Starbucks announced a new 688,000-square-feet consolidation and relocation fulfillment center along with SO.F.TER US, an Italian corporation, which began construction on a 100,000-square-feet U.S. headquarter and plastic pellet processing center. The company hopes to employ around 50 people for the sale of engineering plastics based on polyamide, polypropylene, thermoplastic elastomers and other advanced solutions for the automotive, appliance, construction and electrical markets.

Novamet Specialty Products Corp. purchased the former TOSHIBA facility for use as its corporate headquarters and production operations. Novamet produces more than 60 products including tightly sized nickel powder, metallic flake, coated materials and specialty nickel oxides.

Manufacturers, corporate headquarters and fulfillment industries constructed or bought more than 2.2 million square feet of space in 2013, which resulted in $93.5 million and more than 800 jobs to the community.

Local existing operations also prospered in 2013. Custom Packaging constructed a new office building on W. Baddour Parkway, and Amazon hired more than 450 seasonal employees and converted 200 of those to permanent positions. Amazon now employs more than 600 people.

The first half of 2014 indicates that Wilson County will continue its trend of new employment and businesses.

Wilson County Tire and Retreading opened a new Maragoni retread plant earlier this year in Lebanon. The new facility offers fleets new tires and retreading, as well as a mounted wheel program, drive-up service and pick up and delivery.

Tecnotiles, Inc., recently opened its doors in Lebanon, as well. The company signed a five-year lease on a building at 824 Maddox-Simpson Pkwy. and hopes to employ up to 60 people within five years. Tecnotiles produces ceramic tiles on commission from major ceramic tile producers in Tennessee and Kentucky. Tecnotiles had its grand opening celebration Wednesday. 

G.C. Hixson, director of the Joint Economic and Community Development Board, said the future of Wilson County economy will continue to rise as long as there’s good organizations, community leadership and an intent and desire to work together to achieve success.

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