New Dayton-area manufacturer pledges 100 jobs

The exterior of Hematite’s Lau Parkway facility on a rainy day. THOMAS GNAU/STAFF
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The exterior of Hematite’s Lau Parkway facility on a rainy day. THOMAS GNAU/STAFF

For one of the Miami Valley’s newest manufacturers, the building is over and the work begins.

Actually, much of the building still remains for new Englewood auto supplier Hematite, which had an open house at its new Lau Parkway facility Thursday. And in a sense, the work really began with a groundbreaking last June.

Hematite has invested $14 million into its 106,000-square-foot production site and expects to invest another $5 million by 2020.

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The Canadian-owned company uses recycled materials to treat vehicle under-bodies and craft acoustic components that affect how much noise penetrates a vehicle. The business also makes air- and water-management parts.

Eighteen Englewood employees today work to supply Toyota with parts. By 2021, the Hematite facility should have about 100 employees serving North American customers.

“Supplying the auto industry is not an easy task,” said Jacques Nadeau, Hematite chief operating officer.

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The company considers itself an environmental champion, using materials that might otherwise have ended up in a landfill.

“The environmental aspects of our industry are not something we can forget,” said Jonathan Bridges, director of automotive for JobsOhio, the state’s private development corporation.

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A new local auto parts supplier is a big deal. Though the Dayton area is no longer home to a full vehicle assembly plant and a cohort of Delphi plants — in the late 1990s, the area at one point had some 15,000 Delphi workers — the Dayton Development Coalition and Montgomery County officials have pursued deals with foreign transplants and domestic companies that make parts, such as Fuyao Glass America, which has 2,300 employees in Moraine.

“The Dayton region likes to make things,” Julie Sullivan, vice president of development for the coalition, said at Hematite’s groundbreaking last June. “We always have. And we’re good at it. “

In 2017, Montgomery County commissioners approved $400,000 to Englewood to assist in the plant’s building.

“It has been years and years of working and building to get here,” John Pavanel, Hematite president, said Thursday.