Germany-based MEVA Formwork Systems Inc. will expand its U.S. headquarters at its current Airpark Ohio location, creating 15 new jobs in the next three years.
The city is expected to sell six acres inside Airpark to MEVA for $148,500. The city has also reached an incentive agreement with the company to retain 35 jobs and create 15 new ones over the next three years in exchange for approximately $9,500. MEVA’s total investment on the project is approximately $2.5 million, including equipment, inventory and construction costs.
“It’s been a longtime success story for us,” said Tom Franzen, the city economic development administrator. “We’re extremely happy to see them continue their growth through this acquisition of this additional six acres and increasing their capacity.”
The jobs will pay approximately $42,000 per year.
Franzen expects the land purchase and the incentive agreement to be approved by an emergency ordinance at tonight’s City Commission meeting.
MEVA is a manufacturer of wall and slab formworks systems used by construction companies across the world. The company rents those forms to contractors across the United States and Canada, according to MEVA vice president Maik Deubel.
“We’ve grown into new markets over last two years,” Deubel said.
The expansion will help store the company’s new and used equipment, which is transported overseas from Germany. New workers will maintain, repair and clean those forms.
“For us, it’s definitely a big step and the first expansion and bigger investment since we moved out here to the AirPark,” Deubel said. “The space was limiting us in the last year, and now that we get the chance to work on the expansion, it’s exciting to be part of that and grow the business in Springfield.
Folker Hemmann, owner of the German-American Development Company and treasurer and secretary at MEVA, said he’s happy to see the business expand after struggling through the recession in 2008 and 2009.
“After the year of 2009, when everybody went into the hole, I think we are extremely fortunate to have an excellent product,” Hemmann said. “While our competitors had to close down, we now have a larger market with less competitors. That’s definitely one of the reasons we can spend further.”
Hemmann started MEVA’s move to Springfield out of the Small Business Development Center in 2000. In 2007, MEVA built its own $3.5 million facility at the Airpark.
Hemmann said the easy access to Interstate 70 and their relationship with city and Clark County officials, including Franzen and Clark County commissioner John Detrick, made the expansion an easy decision.
“We’re definitely getting the support of the city and county,” Hemmann said. “It’s an ideal place to be.”
Franzen said MEVA’s expansion means the construction business is starting to pickup.
“They’re reliant upon and dedicated to the construction industry,” Franzen said. “When the economy dipped and the U.S. had its recession, they had to hold on through that. As construction has started to rebound, you’re seeing that growth through MEVA. It’s a positive sign, not only for MEVA and the community, but also for the country.”
Airpark Ohio at Springfield-Beckley Municipal Airport has seen a lot of activity recently — including the Ohio 794 realignment project, the extended roadway at the Airpark and Bob Evans’ construction of a transportation building among others — which are positive signs for the local economy.
“All of the projects we’ve been working on for some time, it’s obviously positive that these things are moving forward and getting wrapped up,” Franzen said. “We’re preparing to be competitive as we move forward in the future.”
$2.5 million: Cost of MEVA Formworks Systems, Inc. total investment of its expansion at AirPark Ohio.
$3.5 million: Cost of MEVA’s facility at AirPark Ohio in 2007.
15: New jobs created by MEVA’s expansion through an agreement with the city, as well as the retention of 35 other jobs.