Wellcamp, Australia-based Wagners Composite Fiber Technologies LLC, a manufacturer of structural fiberglass beams, will open its first U.S. production and assembly facility in Cresson, Texas, where it will create 304 new jobs.
Founded in 2002, the subsidiary of family-owned Wagners Holding Ltd. Group is buying a 12-acre site after local officials approved a zoning request for a manufacturing plant, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
The project is eligible for a Texas Enterprise Fund grant of $1.79 million, according to a news release from office of Texas Gov. Greg Abbott.
Construction on the new facility is expected to be completed in time for operations to begin in October, Wagners CFT General Manager Michael Kemp said in the release.
"This facility will generate over 300 full-time jobs focused on supplying cutting-edge composite fiber infrastructure for bridges, boardwalks, light poles and marine projects," Kemp added.
Wagners CFT uses mostly the pultrusion method to manufacture square and circular hollow profiles for civil and structural applications.
The fiber-reinforced polymer (FRP) components, which are made from a vinyl ester resin matrix reinforced with a glass fiber, are lightweight but have strong mechanical properties in terms of tensile strength and durability. The components also resist corrosion and termites.
Wagners considered Texas for a U.S. operation after meeting local officials in 2019. The opportunity grew out of a business development trip by Parker County leaders to Australia, according to Texas State Rep. Phil King.
Wagners currently manufactures the composite fiber components in Australia and exports them worldwide.
The construction group raised $40 million of equity, paid down debt and strengthened its balance sheet to expand internationally, according to a 2019 news story in the Australian Financial Review.
Wagners expects to spend between $5 million and $10 million building new plants to manufacture composite material for infrastructure, the media outlet also reported.