Car-seat manufacturer plans Columbus expansion

Dorel Juvenile Group, a Foxboro, Mass.-based manufacturer of child safety products, announced Tuesday morning that it plans to expand its development and production operations in Columbus, creating 98 jobs by 2013.

The company, whose products include car seats and strollers, said it will invest more than $20.8 million within the next four years to establish a new design and development center for its car seat division.

Dorel plans to renovate 40,000 square feet of office and warehouse space in Columbus, which also will enable it to increase manufacturing capacity at the site.

The company, which already employs about 850 people in Columbus, plans to begin hiring for development, manufacturing and managerial positions immediately.

“Dorel’s decision to expand its development and testing operations here is a vote of confidence in the Indiana economy and the work force of Columbus,” Gov. Mitch Daniels said in a prepared statement.

The new design and development center will include a crash-test sled and side-impact testing capabilities, as well as other safety-testing equipment, the company said.

The Indiana Economic Development Corp. offered Dorel up to $550,000 in performance-based tax credits and $175,000 in training grants, based on its job-creation plans. Up to $40,000 will be provided to Columbus for infrastructure improvements at the site. The city will consider additional property-tax abatement.

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