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Heartland Adding Facilities and Jobs in Elkhart

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March 30, 2010 by   Leave a Comment

Heartland logoHeartland Recreational Vehicles LLC announced Monday I(March 29)  that it will expand its operations in Elkhart, Ind., creating up to 265 new jobs by 2013, according to a state government news release.

The company, which manufactures fifth-wheel, lightweight and extended stay RVs, will invest more than $2.6 million to purchase and equip a 125,000-square-foot manufacturing facility formerly used by Damon Corp. Heartland announced in February that it has purchased the remaining trademarks of the towable brands of Fleetwood Enterprises Inc., which filed for bankruptcy protection in 2009.

“Elkhart’s recreational vehicle industry continues to show resilience in the face of a tough national economy,” said Mitch Roob, Indiana’s secretary of commerce and CEO of the Indiana Economic Development Corp. “Heartland’s investment further proves that Elkhart’s traditional industries will play an equal part with emerging sectors in bringing new opportunities to this region.”

Heartland Recreational Vehicles, which employs more than 900 workers, plans to begin hiring additional manufacturing and supervisory associates immediately as the new product lines are phased in. The acquisition of the former Fleetwood brands will allow Heartland to expand into markets in the Western United States.

“Our ability to gain ground in a down market has clearly positioned Heartland to make tremendous market share gains and further grow our dealer body in 2010,” said Brian Brady, Heartland president and CEO. “Accordingly, we have been proactive to make sure that we are in step with demand, growing our workforce, expanding our Elkhart complex and making sure we continue delivering product at industry-best standards. This is shaping up to be the best year in our history.”

Founded in 2003 as a manufacturer of high-end fifth-wheels, Heartland RV has expanded into the mid-profile, lightweight and travel trailer markets. In 2006, the company broke ground on its current 110,000 square-foot Elkhart headquarters.

The Indiana Economic Development Corp. offered Heartland RV up to $885,000 in performance-based tax credits based on the company’s job creation plans. The city of Elkhart will provide additional property tax abatement at the request of the Economic Development Corp. of Elkhart County.

“We’re excited about Heartland RV’s announcement to expand their operations in Elkhart,” said Mayor Dick Moore. “This shows the resiliency of the RV industry. Elkhart has been and will continue to be the RV Capital of the World.”

Heartland is a leading manufacturer of towable recreational vehicles in the U.S. The company markets over 15 brands of superior fifth-wheel and travel trailer RVs and has captured the No. 3 market share in the fifth-wheel category. Heartland’s towable RVs are sold through an independent network of dealers throughout the United States and Canada. The company has over 900 employees. For more information about Heartland, visit www.heartlandrvs.com.

Created by Gov. Mitch Daniels in 2005 to replace the former Department of Commerce, the Indiana Economic Development Corp. is governed by a 12-member board chaired by  Daniels. Mitch Roob serves as the chief executive officer of the IEDC. For more information about IEDC, visit www.iedc.in.gov.

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