Bus seat maker to start production in Indiana

A German company that makes passenger seats for buses and trains plans to start its first U.S. manufacturing facility in northern Indiana.

Officials from Kiel NA LLC told the Elkhart City Council on Monday that the company will be increasing its operations at a site it has leased since 2009 as a distribution facility.

Company finance director Mark Walter said Kiel plans to spend $3.8 million on manufacturing equipment and could hire up to 62 workers over the next three years. The company, founded in 1945, has 750 workers worldwide.

That equipment installation could begin within a few months, with initial production starting soon afterward, the Elkhart Truth reported.

Walter said the convenience of working with nearby companies tied to the recreational vehicle industry factored into Kiel's decision to start manufacturing in Elkhart.

The Indiana Economic Development Corp. offered Kiel up to $300,000 in conditional tax credits and up to $150,000 in training grants based on the company's job-creation plans. The city of Elkhart approved additional property-tax abatement.


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