Within one week, a new plastics manufacturer should be up and running in McPherson.
Invista, a subsidiary of Koch Industries, has chosen McPherson as the location of its first manufacturing facility in Kansas. The facility will be located a 901 N. Vanguard St. and bring 12 manufacturing jobs to the city. It should be open by April 1.
The location will produce Raptor nylon pipe, which is used in the oil and gas industry. The product was introduced two years ago.
Invista will be the 19th plastics-related businesses in town out of about 50. Brad Eilts, executive director of McPherson Industrial Development Company, said the city's strong existing plastics industry was a draw for Invista.
“This is the first Invista manufacturing investment in Kansas, and we're excited they chose us,” Eilts said. “It just makes sense. We have low operating costs and a concentration in plastics, so it's a really good fit.”
Eilts said the existing plastics industry means Invista will have easier access to skilled employees familiar with the process of producing plastics products. Mayor Tom Brown said other draws are McPherson's low energy rates and proximity to the company's Wichita headquarters.
“Our energy and electricity rates are better than most other places in the state,” Brown said. “That's one of the keys to them coming to McPherson.”
McPherson continues to have a low unemployment rate of 3.1 percent, less than half of the 6.3 percent national average. Eilts said he hopes to increase the number of people qualified to do the work.
“What we want to do is focus on the quality of our work force, and get people qualified as to workplace aptitudes,” he said. “This is a good investment in our community.”
Brown said he hopes the investment will benefit both Invista and the community.
“I'm looking forward to them setting up,” he said. “I hope we can do a good job, and they can grow and be a good investor.”
Contact Josh Arnett by email at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter @ArnettSentinel.