SMW Manufacturing is taking over operations at the former Caterpillar facility in Lafayette County. The company plans to invest in excess of $15 million and hire up to 50 employees, comprised of predominantly former Caterpillar employees, by the end of 2018.
“I am pleased to welcome SMW to Mississippi and appreciate the company for utilizing the skills of the facility’s previous employees to manufacture the quality products for which SMW is known,” said Gov. Phil Bryant.
SMW manufactures components for the heavy truck, automotive, mining, construction and industrial markets and has experience in cold forming and machining space.
“SMW Manufacturing would like to extend its appreciation to all entities associated with making this vision a reality, first and foremost our customer Caterpillar, along with the state of Mississippi, the county of Lafayette, the city of Oxford, The Oxford-Lafayette Chamber of Commerce and Economic Development Foundation, the Tennessee Valley Authority and NEMEPA,” said SMW General Manager Rich DesCoteaux. “We’re most impressed with the workforce we had the opportunity to select, and this team is among the finest I’ve had the privilege to work alongside. “SMW has a proven track record of growth and job creation. We’ve identified and are aggressively pursuing additional core customers that will fit nicely into our now fifth manufacturing facility, and we expect to begin bringing new business in very quickly.”
The Mississippi Development Authority is providing assistance through the Jobs Tax Credit program. Lafayette County is considering additional local incentives in order to best meet the operational needs of SMW.
“Caterpillar’s talented workforce coupled with bright business prospects were key factors in SMW’s decision to acquire the Oxford facility,” said MDA Executive Director Glenn McCullough, Jr. “We salute our partners at the Oxford-Lafayette County Economic Development Foundation and the Lafayette County Board of Supervisors for helping make this project a reality.”
Lt. Governor Tate Reeves, said that job creation is the number one priority of state government.
“We believe very strongly in state government that job creation, bringing new and better and higher paying jobs to our communities is the number one priority of state government,” said Reeves. “We also have a political philosophy that says that government does not create jobs. Government’s role is to create an environment which encourages those in the private sector to invest capital and create jobs. This is just another example of city government, county government, and state government coming together in a wonderful community here in the north part of our state and creating that environment which has encouraged yet another employer to locate their business here, which ultimately means hiring employees here and continuing to grow in this wonderful community.”
SMW currently employs 33 former Caterpillar employees. The company plans fill the remainder of the positions by the end of 2018.