Milwaukee builds in Mississippi
Milwaukee Tool is expanding operations at three Mississippi locations, investing $33.4 million and creating 660 jobs, the company said. The expansions are planned for the company’s sites in Greenwood, Jackson and Olive Branch.
Milwaukee Tool will create the additional jobs at all three of its Mississippi facilities over the next four years to accommodate cordless power tool manufacturing, accessory manufacturing and additional distribution capacity. The announcement was made with the help of Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant, who said the state values its partnership with the tool maker
Milwaukee executives described a corporate effort to drive growth and create jobs in the United States.
“We currently employ over 3,500 people in the USA, more than 1,600 of which are in Mississippi,” said Milwaukee Tool Group President Steve Richman. “We are deeply committed to investing in our people as we continue to deliver disruptive innovation and the highest quality products for our users and distribution partners.”
The Mississippi Development Authority is providing assistance for building renovations and site improvements at Milwaukee Tool’s Jackson and Olive Branch locations. MDA is providing assistance for public infrastructure improvements at the Greenwood location. The city of Greenwood is receiving a loan through MDA for the purchase of an existing building and parking lot improvements.
Kapro brings levels into the Red zone
Lake Mills, Wis.-based Kapro Tools introduced a line of Optivision Red leveling products designed for increased accuracy.
Kapro’s patented Optivision vial features an easy-to-read vial bubble with super defined edges and strong surrounding color definition, as well as an extra set of reading lines for setting gradients at 1 and 2 percent. The Optivision Red’s unique epoxy-locked tilted setting offers a direct line of sight to the bubble, which makes reading the vial easy and provides more precise results, the company says.
“Kapro’s patented RedEffect is a proven attention-getter on the worksite,” said Gal Wollach, VP of business development at Kapro Tools. “In addition to standing out in the toolbox, Kapro’s industry-leading OPTIVISION products deliver more precise leveling results in the high-quality, durable construction professionals seek.”
The Optivision line includes the 905 Condor Box Level, 935 OPTIVISION Red 10-inch Toolbox Level, 946 Smarty 4-inch Magnetic Pocket Level and 930 SmartCast Heavy-Duty Mason’s Level.
Hitachi Koki launches rebranding initiative
Power tool manufacturer Hitachi Koki Co. is changing its name to Koki Holdings Co., Ltd., effective June 1, 2018.
The Tokyo-based company is rebranding its full line of power tools known as Hitachi or Hitachi/Koki under a new HiKOKI brand, effective Oct. 1, 2018. According to Hitachi Koki, the changes are in line with the company’s international growth strategy. This includes expanding its business in nearly 100 countries.
Hitachi Koki, which also manufactures life-science equipment, has formed a new partnership with KKR, a global private equity group. Koki Holdings plans to accelerate expansion, both organic and through acquisitions, the company said.
Last month, the manufacturer established a new European subsidiary, called Koki Holdings Europe GmbH, in the suburbs of Dusseldorf, Germany.
“We have delivered award-winning innovation and manufacturing with solid business performance for over 70 years, and now is the time for us to focus on expansion as a truly global company while remaining rooted in our Japanese tradition,” said Osami Maehara, president of Hitachi Koki. “We have fully committed to accelerate growth alongside a dynamic new partner in KKR as we pursue our goal to become a global leader in power tools and life science instruments.”
Looking forward, Maehara said the repackaged company has set a sales target of U.S. $2.7 billion in fiscal 2020. “We are confident we can take our business to the next level with the support of all of our employees and partners worldwide, and the revamping of our brand name is the first step to make this possible.”
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(CORRECTION: A previous version of this article included an incorrect figure for the company's 2020 sales target.]