Kawasaki plans $200M expansion that would add 550 new jobs
LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — Kawasaki Motors Manufacturing plans a $200 million expansion at its plant in Lincoln, Nebraska, a move that is expected to create hundreds of new jobs.
The company, a subsidiary of Japan-based Kawasaki Heavy Industries, plans to boost over the next 18 months its capacity to make Jet Skis, ATVs and other small vehicles. The expansion will increase its assembly, paint and welding lines as well as bring more automation, the Lincoln Journal Star reported.
It would add about 550 employees in its consumer products division and its rail car operations despite the increased automation, which the company saus is necessary due to the area’s low unemployment.
Jason Hellbusch, director of administration for Kawasaki Motors Manufacturing, said the expansion is driven by increased consumer sales amid a strong economy, a desire to gain market share and the startup of a contract with the New York City transit authority.
Kawasaki is among the city’s largest employers with more than 2,400 employees.
“For nearly 50 years, Kawasaki has positively impacted the business landscape of Lincoln. This expansion project will play a vital role in our ongoing workforce development efforts, creating hundreds of new jobs for members of our community,” said Wendy Birdsall, president of the Lincoln Chamber of Commerce.