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Shoe maker targets Indiana for 184 customer-service jobs

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Wolverine World Wide Inc., the maker of Stride Rite, Sperry Top-Sider, Hush Puppies and Keds footwear, plans to expand operations in Richmond, creating 184 jobs by 2017 and retaining 130 workers in the city about 65 miles east of Indianapolis.

The Economic Development Corp. of Wayne County said Wolverine is working out a deal to move its Stride Rite customer-service operations from one Richmond  facility to a bigger, city-owned, two-building complex previously used by Dana International.

Wolverine also would move some of its operations from a location in Rockford, Mich., where it is headquartered.

The new jobs would pay an average wage of $15.05 per hour.

The property is part of a 14-acre parcel the city bought in 2012 with hopes of establishing a technology park.

Wolverine said it would spend nearly $2.5 million on the project for furniture, fixtures, computers and IT hardware. It would lease the property from Richmond after the city invests $2.5 million in Certified Technology Park funds to retrofit both buildings and expand parking.

Wayne County also is offering the company $300,000 in Economic Development Income Tax Grant funds for additional property improvements.

The Indiana Economic Development Corp. offered Wolverine up to $1.1 million in conditional tax credits based on the company’s job-creation plans.

The plan hinges on approvals from the Richmond Redevelopment Commission, the Richmond Common Council and the Wayne County Board of Commissioners in several meetings scheduled from Dec. 16 to Jan. 8.






 

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