An Italy-based business, Modula, an international group that manufactures automated storage and retrieval systems, has announced at the SelectUSA Conference in Washington, D.C., that it will invest $26.5 million in a new manufacturing and logistics hub at a vacant facility in Franklin, Ohio, where it will create 100 new jobs.
Modula Inc. Chief Executive Officer Antonio Pagano, who was joined by U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine, and JobsOhio President and Chief Investment Officer J.P. Nauseef, said that Southwest Ohio would be the company’s second U.S. location. The new facility will expand Modula’s manufacturing capacity and increase its access to customers across the country.
“Modula’s investment brings 100 new jobs and a globally successful company to Ohio,” said Governor DeWine. “The decision to choose Ohio for this cutting-edge manufacturing and logistics operation demonstrates how our state’s people, diverse industry strength, and location can support innovative companies’ efforts to expand in the North American market.”
“Modula is facing impressive growth worldwide at a pace of almost 25 percent year-over-year in the last five years, and particularly in the North American market we faced a further acceleration in the last two years,” said Pagano. “After an accurate analysis, we chose Ohio and particularly the Cincinnati area because of the excellent position, the great industrial presence and the high professionalism of JobsOhio and REDI Cincinnati, who helped us in the whole process. We are sure that Modula will have a positive impact in the local community of Franklin, and we are excited to start our new adventure there.”
“Our target is to progressively establish a production capacity of 2,000 Vertical Lift Modules (VLM) per year in this building,” said Modula Chairman Franco Stefani. “The highly automated production process is in line with the high technological level of our VLM products, and the Warehouse Management Systems (WMS) software that goes with them. We are willing to invest in the rich, dynamic, and skilled human capital of this region who are able to work in an Industry 4.0 advanced environment.”
After experiencing rapid growth, Modula initially planned to expand in the United States by establishing separate facilities for its manufacturing operation and its logistics hub. Modula found that the former Dayton Daily News printing plant in Franklin met all of its manufacturing and logistics needs, which led to the company locating both operations there.
Modula attributed its decision to locate at the 5000 Commerce Center Drive building because it affords future expansion opportunities and an advantageous location closer to customers. In addition, the region’s strong infrastructure supports faster and more efficient delivery of products.
“We and our partners at REDI Cincinnati and Warren County are delighted to welcome Modula, Inc. to Ohio,” said Nauseef. “Modula’s Franklin investment will revive a vacant facility and employ at least 100 Ohioans who will support Modula’s ongoing innovation and worldwide growth in the automotive storage and retrieval systems space.”
The project represents ongoing efforts by REDI Cincinnati, in partnership with the European American Chamber of Commerce, to attract foreign investment to the Greater Cincinnati region. Modula’s new facility in Southwest Ohio will be its second location in the United States.
“Modula’s investment in Franklin is a unique opportunity that combines foreign direct investment and one of our target industries, advanced manufacturing, into an iconic building,” said Kimm Lauterbach, REDI Cincinnati president and CEO. “It takes the work of all of our partners to accomplish this, and I’m thankful for their commitment to the region.”
Cox Media Group Ohio was the previous owner of the building, which housed printing operations for its three daily papers – the Dayton Daily News, Springfield News-Sun, and Journal News – and several of its weekly publications.