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3 posts categorized "Harmony news"

March 26, 2014

Area manufacturer to expand, add 14 jobs

A long-time southern Minnesota manufacturer says a $215,000 state tax credits based on adding more jobs helped convince it to expand here rather than on the West Coast.

M60stdHarmony Enterprises, which makes and services recycling and waste management equipment in the small town of Harmony, are one of five companies chosen for the new Minnesota Job Creation Fund program. The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development announced the the first round of businesses on Tuesday.

If Harmony Enterprises does as it has pledged and adds 14 new jobs to its current staff of 60 plus builds a $1.1 million expansion within two years, it will receive the $215,000 in tax credits over four years. The manufacturer, which also has a location in France, has been based in Harmony since 1962.

Owner and President Steve Cremer says the company has been growing quickly in the past few years and more growth appears to be on the way, particularly in Africa and Asia. That prospect had Harmony Enterprises considering its options on how expand its production. With so many of the firms competitors and customers located on the West Coast, they start looking at the possibility of adding a facility in California or Arizona.Bcb2003-open

Then they found out about the $24 million Minnesota Job Creation Fund, which began in January.

"We wanted to stay here. The community is good to us," said Cremer. "Now we'll start construction of a 6,000-square-foot addition in the spring."

The plan is to create a new drive-through shipping department, which will improve efficiency for the company and open up the current shipping area to revamped into more production space.

In addition to the improved shipping and the expanding production area, Harmony Enterprises is also ramping up its new service offerings. About a year and half ago, it launched a new service business. It contracts directly with companies to maintain and repair all recycling and waste management machines.

"That's our really big growth area. Many of the new jobs will be service jobs," he says.

February 25, 2010

A few rays of sun amid the clouds - State of Manufacturing report

Here's some from my piece on the State of Manufacturing report released Wednesday:

Minnesota manufacturers still see plenty of clouds on the economic horizon, but the sun is starting to shine.

That's the gist of the State of Manufacturing study done by Enterprise Minnesota, the  state manufacturing association.

"This year we saw more of a true optimism compared to the cautious hopefulness of last year," Enterprise CEO Bob Kill told a group of about 20 regional manufacturers Wednesday in the meeting room of Rochester's Hardcore Computer.

"We're calling it 'sunshine on a cloudy day,' that's the term I came up with, because 'guarded optimism' was getting k02252010stateofmanufacturingreportjkind of old," he said.

For the study, the association interviewed 500 manufacturing executives during two weeks in January. It also includes discussions for 13 focus groups from across the state, including ones in Winona and Mankato.

Overall, the study found more executives anticipating growth for the coming year than in the 2009 poll. Statewide, 26 percent forecast economic expansion in 2010 compared to 8 percent in 2009.

However, 53 percent expect 2010 to be flat economically. That is an improvement from the 56 percent that expected 2009 to be in a recession.

Executives for firms that make everything from tractors to waste containers to medical devices also were more positive about their companies' profitability in 2010 than they were in 2009.

The study found 21 percent expected profits to grow by more than 10 percent and 15 percent expect an increase of less than 10 percent. The dim outlook for 2009 had only 9 percent of executives projecting a more than 10 percent increase and 8 percent expecting increases less than that.

Still, 45 percent expect profit levels to stay flat compared to the previous year. In 2009, 48 percent predicted that.

"People feel better, but it is still a bumpy road ahead," Kill said.

February 09, 2009

Like a hog on Rochester

For those saying it out there, I am NOT obsessed with artificial insemination of livestock.

It is just an interesting industry, which seems to be well-represented in Rochester.
Here's an item from today's column:

What do you do when a pig outgrows a pen?

Get a larger pen.

The same holds true for a growing business (without most of the mess.)

Norsvin, a swine genetics company, moved its headquarters from Harmony to Rochester in January.

“We just needed a larger headquarters. We were outgrowing our office,” said Norsvin General Manager Roxi Thompson.

Norsvin logo
Now the staff of 11 people has space to move around at 2768 Superior Drive N.W., south of Mr. Pizza North.

And what does the swine genetics company do? 

“We provide live animals and semen to pork producers across North America,” she said.