June 29, 2016

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Stellar Automotive Group in Seville looking to expand

SEVILLE — Stellar Automotive Group, a vehicle transmission distributor, is looking to add 30,000 square feet of warehouse space and at least 10 new jobs to its facility on Panther Parkway.

Company officials said the expansion is needed because of the acquisition in January of a Seattle-based lubricant manufacturer, LubeGuard.

“Having bought this company, we’re now stocking lubricants, because our customers want to order their lubricants and parts together,” said Nora Howsare, international sales manager.

The company is applying for tax abatement incentives to add new warehouse space and create at least 10 new jobs.

Stellar Automotive plans to keep some LubeGuard operations in Seattle, but the expansion will be constructed in a way that would accommodate the chemical production to be shifted to Seville. A decision has not yet been made.

In addition to its Seville facility, Stellar has a warehouse in California and may keep some product stored in Seattle to expedite orders to customers.

“Right now, we can place the orders from our office here, but we can ship orders on the West Coast faster from there,” Howsare said.

Even though Stellar plans to keep the Seattle plant, the expanded product line means the company needs the space as soon as possible.

“We’re making it work, but our warehouse is really packed right now,” Howsare said. As soon as final tax abatements are approved, the company plans to get construction under way.

A Medina County Economic Development Corp. official said the proposed expansion of Stellar Automotive represents a $1.8 million investment.

Executive Director Bethany Dentler said the corporation also is working with another Seville company, which couldn’t be named because formal plans have not yet been announced.

That unnamed Seville company has invested $450,000 this year on a new machine line that would add five new positions. The company also is considering another expansion next year, which could add 25 more jobs.

Dentler said a handful of local companies are getting ready to expand in one way or another and are working with the corporation to secure incentives to help them grow in Medina County.

Dentler said one manufacturing company is investigating a 140,000-square-foot expansion and a different company is seeking $2.2 million in financing to construct a new facility that could mean 20 to 30 new jobs.

Dentler discussed the upcoming projects during a “City, Commerce and Coffee” meeting earlier this month in Brunswick.

She said she expects other expansion projects as companies start to rebound from the economic recession.

 “We’re seeing a lot of projects come to fruition and that’s very encouraging,” she said.

Contact Loren Genson at (330) 721-4063 or lgenson@medina-gazette.com.

Loren Genson About Loren Genson

Loren Genson was The Gazette's senior reporter. From August 2012 through September 2015, she covered Brunswick city and state and national government. To contact The Gazette, call the managing editor at (330) 721-4065.

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