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.”

Feminology, LLC To Bring Together Free Women And Business Forum As Part Of Startup Week Chattanooga

This week’s Startup Week Chattanooga will include a forum-style discussion on Women & Business: Facts, Fiction & Forecast, offered for free to the public by a woman-owned and directed public relations agency, Feminology LLC. The event will concentrate around the challenges facing women today in the path to starting and owning their own businesses, ... (click for more)

Second Chance Thrift Store Opens Tuesday

The Humane Educational Society's Second Chance Thrift Store will be open for business on Tuesday.  Hours of operation are Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Donations of items may be made to the Humane Educational Society's Second Chance Thrift Store. Proceeds will directly impact the lives of homeless animals by providing veterinary care for injured and sick animals, supporting ... (click for more)

City Council Approves 8-Story Height For Proposed Building Behind The Chattanooga Choo Choo

A day after the Planning Commission rejected  a seven-story apartment building on the 1200 block of Cowart Street, the City Council approved a building that could rise to eight stories behind the Chattanooga Choo Choo. After the meeting, Jon Kinsey, former mayor and Choo Choo managing partner, said, "We are not planning an eight-story building. We just went through the ... (click for more)

Lee University Social Media Threat Suspect Identified, Charged And In Custody

Lee University student Olayinka Opaso, from Nigeria, 18, confessed on Tuesday to a senior Lee University official about his involvement in the Yik Yak post describing potential threats to Lee University students. Opaso was immediately placed into custody by the campus security director, Matt Brinkman. Mr. Brinkman transported Opaso to the Cleveland Police Department where ... (click for more)

A New Commercial Look For Signal Mountain

A speaker at the Signal Mountain Town Council meeting last night presented some very interesting information about the council’s new bigger and brighter vision of our commercial area. Councilman Spalding presented a list of sign changes to the Design Review Commission that the council wants and several of those items were approved last night.  Still to come on the list are ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: So Why Pick A Fight?

On Tuesday I spied a picture that proclaimed “The Mayors Say…It is time for a Smoke-Free Community.” Apparently the newest clown on our horizon has led a group of very knowledgeable and learned people into an ambush because even country music’s Travis Tritt can tell you this means T-R-O-U-B-L-E. You are about to mess with the wrong group of people. The mayor of Lookout Mountain, ... (click for more)