Governor, Commissioner Welcome Del Conca To Loudon

Friday, December 21, 2012

Governor Bill Haslam and Department of Economic and Community Development Commissioner Bill Hagerty along with company officials announced Friday that Ceramica Del Conca will build its first North American manufacturing facility in Loudon. The announcement by the Italian ceramic floor tile manufacturer represents a $70 million investment and will create 178 new manufacturing jobs in Loudon County.

“This announcement is great news for Loudon County, and I am excited to welcome Del Conca to Tennessee,” Governor Haslam said. “We are very appreciative of the investment in our state as we work toward our goal of becoming the No. 1 location in the Southeast for high quality jobs.”

“Congratulations to Del Conca on this announcement,” Mr. Hagerty said. “Tennessee’s business friendly environment – led by a Governor and administration who understand business – are proving attractive to overseas companies looking to expand their global presence. We are proud to add Del Conca ceramic tiles to the list of quality products made in Tennessee.”

The Italian ceramic tile maker was founded in 1979 and uses high-tech manufacturing processes to keep pace with the growing tile market. Del Conca’s porcelain ceramic tiles are exported worldwide for use in both residential and commercial facilities.

Along with establishing a base for U.S. operations, the Loudon facility will allow Del Conca to serve major U.S. customers such as Lowe’s Arizona Tile, Mannington and Tile Shop more effectively. The facility will be a 320,000-square-foot manufacturing, research, showroom and administrative facility and will be located at the Sugarlimb Industrial Park.

“We have chosen Loudon, Tennessee for our new North American facility,” said Paolo Mularoni, president of Del Conca USA. “Loudon is geographically located close to the main U.S. highways and in close proximity to our sources of raw materials. We have found in Loudon a very cooperative team of people who are working hard in order to help us build a successful business that better serves our U.S. and Canadian customers.” 

The 178 new jobs will include managerial, technical/engineering, administrative, production and distribution positions. The Loudon facility is expected to begin operations by the end of 2013. The construction and hiring process will be completed in two phases; the first of which will include the hiring of 100 employees. The remaining 78 employees are expected to be retained within the next five – six years.

“Loudon County welcomes Del Conca to East Tennessee with this opportunity to bring a substantial volume of high-quality jobs and positive economic impact to this region,” Loudon County Economic Development Agency President Pat Phillips said. “We thank Del Conca for selecting Loudon County and also appreciate our partners with the State of Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development and TVA for facilitating this exceptional opportunity for our community and our region.”

“TVA and Loudon Utilities Board congratulate The Del Conca Group on their decision to locate a new manufacturing facility in Loudon County, Tn.,” John Bradley, TVA senior vice president of Economic Development, said. “We are privileged to work with the State of Tennessee, the Loudon County Economic Development Agency and other community leaders to facility new jobs for area residents.”



Local Professionals Honored At Inclusion By Design Program Inaugural Graduation

Ten business professionals graduated from the Inclusion by Design Executive Leadership Program sponsored by the Urban League of Greater Chattanooga on Dec. 7. Friends and family of the graduates and community members gathered for the ceremony, and Dr. Robert Dooley, dean of the School of Business at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, served as keynote speaker. IBD is ... (click for more)

Benefits Broker DeForest Spencer Launches New Firm

Long-time insurance producer DeForest “DeFo” Spencer has launched Spencer Benefits, a full-service employee and executive benefits brokerage firm.  The firm specializes in employee and executive benefits, large-scale life insurance policies, succession planning advisory and individual insurance solutions that protect and preserve wealth. Affiliated with NFP and Partners ... (click for more)

Multiple Callers Said Man Who Tried To Rape Woman At MLK Neighborhood Was "Tom"

After police on Wednesday released clear photos of a man who tried to tried to rape a woman in the MLK Neighborhood, multiple callers said it was "Tom" who works at Amazon. The victim then picked Thomas Lee Carr out of a photo lineup as her assailant. He is charged with attempted rape. The woman said on Tuesday just before noon she was followed into the complex where she ... (click for more)

Arson Suspected In Morning House Fire

Chattanooga firefighters were dispatched to a reported structure fire around  5:40 a.m.  on Thursday at 2707 N. Chamberlain Ave. Captain David Brooks with Engine 4 said smoke and flames were visible when they arrived on the scene. The firefighters forced their way in through the front door, made an aggressive attack on the fire, and extinguished the flames ... (click for more)

Technology: The Virtual Drug

The truth is you're probably reading this on a mobile device or your computer. As a matter of fact, I’m typing this down on a MacBook Pro. The point is technology is everywhere. It engulfs like a tsunami engulfs a village, only a few ever escape. In fact, it took me two hours to start this paper because I was so hypnotized by phone, checking my Instagram and seeing what the next ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Let’s Focus On ‘Better’

As I stepped away from the overflow crowd at  Monday  night’s Town Council meeting on Signal Mountain, I leaned in to tell Jean Trohanis how sorry I was to hear of the loss of her dearest friend. But in that millisecond before I could speak, the former but still-loved elementary school principal gave me her best hallway hiss and, with a pointed finger, she ordered, “You ... (click for more)