A Japanese company will soon manufacture at least 100 new jobs in Sandusky.
Okamoto Manufacturing, based in Tokyo, already has signs up on the Monroe Street property announcing its arrival.
Okamoto president Jiro Okamoto and the six Okamoto executives who will run the Sandusky facility met with city and county leaders for a luncheon Wednesday afternoon at the Sandusky Yacht Club.
"There was no business conducted other than for them to put names and faces together," said Mark Litten, executive director of the Erie County Economic Development Corporation.
"I thought it went very well," said incoming City Manager Matt Kline. "I think it's very exciting that Okamoto has chosen to locate operations in Sandusky."
Kline said that based oneconomic statistics, there is a residual effect within an economy when a manufacturing plant such as Okamoto moves into acommunity.
It will be important for the city to work with Okamoto and find out what services and businesses it relies on, he said.
"We need to go out and see if we can court those types of businesses, which in turn has a snowballing affect," Kline said.
Ex officio Mayor Dan Kaman said that Okamoto will bring living wage jobs the city desperately needs.
"We're very excited to have them," Kaman said.
The facility is scheduled to be up and running by late 2008, Kaman and Litten said.
As the plant reaches itsproduction goals, it will create about 100-120 jobs.
"It's wonderful to see the factory restarting and providing good jobs here in the city of Sandusky again," said Commissioner DennisMurray Jr.
"It was interesting meeting the folks from the company and getting a sense of the breadth of their production. They were very candid about what the company does and what their objectives are here in Sandusky," he said.
The Monroe Street plant, next to the former G&C Foundry, will be Okamoto's first North American manufacturing facility.
The plant will make vinylproducts used in the auto industry.
"Worldwide they make all sorts of different products," Murray said.
The property was formerly the site of Sandusky Athol, which closed after filing for bankruptcy, Litten said. Operations ended at Sandusky Athol about one year ago.
The turnaround time for this property is what makes it monumental, Litten explained, adding that many vacant buildings have been sitting for years but this one will be back in business soon.
"I am really excited about the possibilities in working with our new friends from Okamoto," said Commissioner Craig Stahl.