Supreme Corp. will add 350 new jobs

Supreme Corp. plans to add 350 jobs and millions of dollars in new equipment this year and over the next two years at its Goshen campus, moves that would make it the fifth-largest for-profit employer in the county.

Posted on March 2, 2012 at 12:00 a.m.

GOSHEN — Supreme Corp. plans to add 350 production jobs at its Goshen campus, part of a multi-million-dollar expansion project through 2014.

The company’s plans were released Friday with information on next week’s Goshen City Council meeting, where Supreme will ask for a seven-year tax break.

“This project involves an investment of $4.6 million in real property and $2.7 million in machinery and equipment,” Mark Brinson, community development director for the city, wrote to council members.

“This is a three-year project that will result in the additional employment of 350 employees by the end of 2014,” on top of the 630 already employed by Supreme, according to Brinson.

“This will bring the total employment at the Goshen campus to 980, making Supreme the fifth-largest for-profit employer in Elkhart County,” Brinson informed the council.

Supreme manufactures and sells box trucks, buses and armored vehicles, according to its application for the tax break.

Construction work is set to start Wednesday, the day after the council meeting, according to Supreme’s application.

The new jobs will pay an average annual wage of more than $35,000, according to the application by Supreme’s CEO, Kim Korth.

The first 150 will start this year, with another 100 next year and the final 100 in 2014, according to the company.

Supreme will spend more than $2.1 million this year to re-tool and re-equip existing buildings “to improve efficiency and capacity” and to “bring manufacturing processes up to date,” according to the company’s application.

The tax break would amount to $688,000 in property taxes that otherwise would’ve been paid once the new equipment is installed and the existing buildings are upgraded. Even with the break, Supreme will pay $500,000 more in property taxes on the improved facilities and new equipment over the next seven years, according to Brinson.

The company plans to make more investments in Goshen over the next several years and will ask for additional tax breaks, according to Brinson.

Korth didn’t return a call seeking comment Friday.


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