Valeo to expand in the new year


A local auto lighting fixture manufacturer plans to add on to its existing Freeman Field Industrial Park facility in the new year to accommodate for growth.

Mary Winburn with Jackson County Industrial Development Corp. spoke on behalf of Valeo North America during a Seymour City Council meeting Monday night.

The company was seeking tax abatement on its planned investment of $22.4 million, which includes a $14 million building addition and improvements at its plant at 1231 A Ave. North.

“Valeo has a growing business, and they are in need of more space,” Winburn said. “They plan to do a facility addition and some improvements that will be in two sections.”

Winburn said the project will result in about 78,000 square feet of new floor space but will not create any new jobs at this time.

“There are no new jobs at this point on these investments,” she said.

But the expansion will improve efficiency, Winburn said, and allow Valeo to retain its current employment level of 2,735 workers, making it the county’s largest employer ahead of Aisin USA Mfg. Inc.

Valeo employees are responsible for generating $204,627,000 in salaries.

The remaining $8.4 million of Valeo’s investment will be spent on personal property in the form of new manufacturing equipment to support business growth, Winburn said.

The company has been producing automotive lighting systems in Seymour since 1978 and has developed several lighting innovations for the industry used by automakers worldwide.

The council unanimously approved the abatement requests for a period of 10 years each, allowing Valeo to phase in paying taxes on the building addition and new equipment.

Both investments will begin the first of the year and be completed by Dec. 31, 2020, Winburn said.

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