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FLOQUIP EXPANDING IN MIDWAY

INDUSTRIAL PARK

 

SNF subsidiary increasing employment, building to 160,000 SF

 
Coastal Industrial Company LLC contractorOCTOBER 7, 2014: MIDWAY, Ga. — Advancements in the North American energy sector have prompted a business boom for Liberty County’s largest private employer, which recently announced plans to expand a subsidiary located in Midway Industrial Park. 
 
SNF Floquip, a subsidiary of SNF Holding Co., manufactures water-soluble polymer feed equipment used to optimize delivery of the SNF chemical polymers produced in Riceboro.
 
Recently, the company announced a $7 million expansion that will double its current manufacturing facility to 160,000 square feet and quadruple the office area to enable creation of more jobs, according to facility Manager of Manufacturing John Rankin.
 
The 160,000-square-foot facility will be sixteen times larger than the 10,000-square-foot building in Riceboro where the company launched with about 15 employees in the early 1990s. In November 2011, the facility moved to its current 80,000 square-foot shop in Midway Industrial Park.
 
“You’d have never imagined five years ago that going from 10,000 to 80,000 wouldn’t meet our needs,” Rankin says.

The company now calls upon the skills and expertise of some 130 workers — about 50 are directly employed with Floquip as engineers, quality control and assurance technicians, and logistics support personnel. An additional 80 contractors from companies such as Coastal Industrial Company LLC, Universal Electrical Company and Daybreak Industrial provide welding, pipe fitting and fabrication at the shop.
 
“We can’t hire fast enough, and we can’t build fast enough,” Rankin says.
 
SNF Holding Co., a France-headquartered, privately-owned $2.6 billion company, is in the process of making $1 billion in global business investments. Overall, SNF’s business has grown about 15 percent each year, and Rankin anticipates about a 35 percent employment growth in Floquip’s future.
 
During a recent Liberty County Development Authority board meeting, SNF Mining Business Director Kirk Thomas spoke about changes in the chemical market, which have boosted Floquip’s significance in supporting SNF’s chemical sales.
 
“The driving force for getting our polymers out into the field is via the equipment in lots of cases. Having the equipment enables us to be a full service provider, not only of the chemical, but also of the means in which to use the chemical,” Thomas elaborates. “It’s a huge new asset to have Floquip as part of our group.”
 
The company’s equipment is used in an array of markets, including municipal wastewater treatment, agriculture and turf management, mining and Canadian oil sands. Floquip products manufactured in Midway are primarily utilized in Canada, Central and South America and the Caribbean.
 
Enhanced-oil recovery in Canada’s Alberta Province is one of the company’s largest markets, and Thomas says the North American oil sands industry is rapidly growing.
 
“In a lot of these applications, we’re not involved in extracting the end-use product, we’re there to help clean up the waste, so it’s good for the environment,” Rankin says.
 
The business’s growth benefits other environments, too, Rankin says, as production materials are sourced from other state vendors where possible, such as Georgia Iron Works in Macon.
 
Rankin attributes the business’s prosperity not only to global growth among various industries, but also to Liberty County’s workforce attributes, collaborative business atmosphere, and training opportunities provided through Savannah Technical College.  
 
“I’m a vet myself, and I like the close proximity to Fort Stewart and to the departing military. It’s a good resource for us to have,” Rankin says, explaining that as a Marine Corps veteran, he understands the desirability of trained, reliable employees.
 
“There are lots of positive to being in Liberty County,” Thomas adds. “We’ve benefitted from our involvement with the Liberty County Development Authority, especially giving us recognition for the International Business of the Year award; the ties to World Trade Center and its international trade and export resources; and the networking opportunities with other businesses in the area provides us with insight.”
 
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