Japanese-owned automotive supplier to invest more than $5 million

FRANKFORT Ky. (Dec. 19, 2012) – Governor Steve Beshear today announced YH America Inc. plans to expand manufacturing operations in Versailles, adding 10 new, full-time jobs and investing more than $5 million in the Commonwealth. 

“YH America puts a special emphasis on having the highest standards, and that is evident by the company’s successful growth in Versailles, with 10 new jobs and a $5 million investment,” said Gov. Beshear. “Our automotive industry is vital to our overall economic success, and YH America enhances our economic position and plays an important part of strengthening our network of Japanese-owned companies across Kentucky.”


Kentucky is home to more than 440 motor vehicle-related facilities that employ nearly 72,000 people. Also, Japanese-owned companies operate more than 150 facilities in Kentucky and provide more than 34,000 full-time jobs. Kentucky has the second-highest Japanese foreign direct investment in the U.S. on a per capita basis.


YH America’s Versailles facility currently employs 29 people and is the windshield sealant and related products division for the company. A subsidiary of the Yokohama Rubber Co. Ltd., YH America is a supplier of high performance glass bonding adhesive systems used for bonding stationary glass (windshields, back glass and side glass) into automobiles, buses and military vehicles. The expansion will add a second urethane sealant production line in Versailles, doubling the plant’s ability to meet customer demand in the Americas. 


“This is an exciting time for YH America and our division in particular,” said Al Harrington, operations manager for YH America. “This expansion will position us to accommodate future business growth while maintaining a consolidated base in Kentucky. Our manufacturing facility in Versailles is centrally located to service our automotive customers, which are located as far north as Canada and as far south as Alabama. YH America is committed to contributing to the unique quality of life shared by residents of the Bluegrass.”


To encourage the investment and job growth in Versailles, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) preliminarily approved the company for tax incentives up to $200,000 through the Kentucky Business Investment program. The performance-based incentive allows a company to keep a portion of its investment over the term of the agreement through corporate income tax credits and wage assessments by meeting job and investment targets. 


KEDFA also approved YH America for tax benefits up to $70,000 through the Kentucky Enterprise Initiative Act, which allows approved companies to recoup Kentucky sales and use tax on construction costs, building fixtures, equipment used in research and development and electronic processing equipment.


“This is an exciting investment in Versailles and Woodford County by YH America,” said Sen. Julian M. Carroll, of Frankfort. “The community will reap the benefits of new jobs as well as economic growth and development. The decision by YH America to expand its operations here speaks well of our workforce. I applaud Gov. Beshear for taking the lead to support this industry, their employees and their families.”


“Kentucky has built a sterling reputation in the automotive industry, and companies like YH America are a major reason why,” said Rep. Carl Rollins, of Midway. “I want to thank its leaders for taking this step to expand and invest more in our community. This move speaks volumes about our second-to-none workforce. I also appreciate our local and state officials working together to help make this happen.”


“YH America has been a fixture in Versailles for over 20 years,” said Versailles Mayor Fred Siegelman. “It is a leader in automotive products and an integral part of our economy. We’re certainly grateful for this investment as we are for assistance from Gov. Beshear and Sec. Larry Hayes.”


“Congratulations to YH America for their continued success,” said Woodford County Judge-Executive John Coyle. “We’re excited for the citizens of Woodford County who benefit from jobs being created and value our corporate relationship with YH America. Thanks to Gov. Beshear and the Cabinet for Economic Development for its assistance.”


Woodford County has also been certified by the Kentucky Workforce Investment Board as a Work Ready Certified Community. The certification is an assurance to business and industry that the community is committed to providing the highly skilled workforce required in today’s competitive global economy.


For more information on YH America, visit www.yhamerica.com.


Information on Kentucky’s economic development efforts and programs is available at www.ThinkKentucky.com. Fans of the Cabinet for Economic Development can also join the discussion on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/ThinkKentucky or follow on Twitter at www.Twitter.com/ThinkKentucky.


A detailed community profile for Versailles (Woodford County) can be viewed at http://www.thinkkentucky.com/EDIS/cmnty/index.aspx?cw=117.




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