Krones Inc., the maker of PET blow molding machines, filling lines and integrated processing systems, will build a 40,000-square-foot training and technology center, across the street from its headquarters in Franklin, Wis.
Construction is expected to begin next spring.
Krones, a unit of Krones AG of Neutraubling, Germany, announced the news at its annual employee appreciation event on Aug. 11. Krones officials said the company decided build the center in Franklin after considering sites throughout the United States.
Krones Inc. employs more than 600 people at its U.S. headquarters in Franklin, making the company a major employer in suburban Milwaukee.
The training and technology center will serve both customers and employees. The Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. is providing up to $300,000 in tax credits. The actual amount of credits Krones gets will be based on the number of jobs created and the level of capital investment.
Although Krones officials the facility is still in the early planning stages, they said the company expects to add at least 25 new high-skilled positions.
"As an innovation leader in our industry, we consider the new Krones training and technology a critical element in our value proposition to customers and employees in North America," said Holger Beckmann, president and CEO of Krones Inc. "Higher skill levels translate to greater customer success with their Krones machines."
Krones also recently opened a West Coast office in Ontario, Calif.
The 2,781-square-foot facility houses sales and service personnel from Krones and its subsidiaries, beginning with Trans-Market LLC. The company also has an office in Mississauga, Ontario.
The California facility also is a step in Krones' strategy of building up local processing engineering and sourcing capabilities.
Trans-Market provides turnkey systems including engineering, automation, installation and maintenance to the citrus, dairy, food, beverage, pharmaceutical and personal care industries. Trans-Market, based in Tampa, Fla., has three locations in Texas, in Dallas and San Antonio, and it also recently opened an office in Houston.
Krones added to its full-service offerings for filling and packaging technology by purchasing Javlyn Engineering pllc, a Rochester, N.Y.-based process integrator serving the food, dairy and beverage sectors.
"We have a large, growing customer base in this part of the country," said B.J. Anderson, head of sales for the western division at Krones Inc. "This expansion gives us a collaboration point in a high-activity area to be more agile in meeting customer needs."
Krones AG makes fully integrated packaging and bottling lines, integrated system for beer production and processing systems and warehouse logistics systems. The company claims that today, every fourth beverage bottle in the world runs through one its machines.
The German parent established Krones Inc. in 1966. Franklin Mayor Steve Olson said Krones is the largest employer in the city's business parks. The company was one of the first businesses in the Franklin Industrial Park, he said.