CLINTON, MS. Continental Tire officially broke ground at the site of its new tire plant near Clinton, MS, Thursday. The ceremony marked the beginning of the construction process, which is expected to be completed in 2019, according to the company.
Continental is investing approximately $1.4 billion in the plant, which according to Nikolai Setzer, Conti’s executive board member and head of global business, is part of the company’s long-term growth strategy. When the plant reaches full capacity in the next decade, it is expected to employ 2,500 people.
The new facility will be located on approximately 1,000 acres in Hinds County off Interstate 20, two miles from Clinton and 20 miles from Jackson. Construction of the plant is expected to begin in 2018, and production of commercial vehicle tires is planned to start by the end of 2019.
Setzer said the company selected Clinton to build its plant for three reasons: the people of Mississippi, location and infrastructure, and overall support from the state and community.
“The people here in Mississippi are committed to win and have a passion to win and drive business forward,” Setzer said, noting that the first two employees hired for the project are Mississippians. “This is the best spot our engineers have ever seen. This spot is born to be a tire plant, and we are damn happy to have it as our plant.”
Paul Williams, executive vice president of commercial vehicle tire, the Americas, explained that the plant will include a customer showcase center, customer training center, and employee training center. He added the company will relocate its technology and warranty center here from the Mount Vernon facility.
Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant, who attended the event with state and local officials, said: “The groundbreaking of Continental’s new tire manufacturing plant in Central Mississippi marks a significant milestone in the development of the company’s newest state-of-the-art facility. I congratulate everyone involved with this monumental project and look forward to the plant’s progress.”
Back in February, Mississippi’s legislature approved $263 million through the state’s Major Economic Impact Authority to fund site acquisition and preparation, infrastructure improvements, and workforce training.