Global Cooling announces job growth, seals deal with JobsOhio

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Click here to see original story in the Athens Messenger.

Global Cooling plans to add more than 30 jobs at its facility in Theisen Industrial Park over the next two to three years, the company announced Friday. The industrial park is near The Plains, but has an Athens address.

On Thursday, an agreement was executed with JobsOhio for the nonprofit economic development organization to provide $250,000 in grant funds to Global Cooling for the company’s expansion plans. Global Cooling manufactures and sells Stirling Ultracold freezers. The Messenger asked the company for more details of its expansion plans.

“There will be no physical expansion of the building but we will use allocated funds for specific machinery and equipment to expand our production lines. This equipment will add both capability and capacity,” stated an emailed response from Nancy Crist, Global Cooling’s vice president for organizational development.

The company said it plans to spend several million dollars over the next two to three years to support manufacturing capability, strategic product development “and the growth of our people.” The expansion involves the development and launch of “multiple” new products and technologies, according to the company.

“The current plan is to produce these products in Athens,” the email stated. “We have approximately 80 employees in Athens and will grow that by 30-plus over the next 2-3 years.”

Neill Lane, Global Cooling president and CEO, commented on the assistance received from JobsOhio and the organization’s regional partner, the Appalachian Partnership for Economic Growth.

“We appreciate the assistance provided by APEG and JobsOhio and are excited to continue our growth in Athens and the state of Ohio,” Lane said. “This is an excellent business location for us for a variety of reasons, in particular because of our skilled and reliable workforce, and we look forward to great success here.”

JobsOhio is providing a $150,000 economic development grant and a $100,000 workforce development grant. The agreement with JobsOhio calls for creation of 32 jobs, according to the company email.

In a related item, the Ohio State Controlling Board has approved $228,805 in roadwork development grant funds for improvements to Athens County Road 110 (Poston Station), which provides access to the industrial park. The grant is coming through the Ohio Development Services Agency.

Roadwork grants are awarded for public road improvements that support the expansion for attraction of businesses.

“The grant was approved. We’re currently working on executing the agreement,” said agency spokesman Todd Walker, who explained the grant is being awarded to the Athens County Commissioners. The Development Services Agency’s request for the road funds states the grant was being sought in support of the Global Cooling project.

“The roadwork will enable the roadway to handle additional truck traffic resulting from the project and will also proved improved access to additional land in the industrial park,” the request states.

Athens County Engineer Jeff Maiden has said previously that there already were plans to pave Poston Station Road this summer, but the $228,805 state grant funding would allow additional strengthening of the road. The county recently sought bids for the additional work.

“I have (proposed) contracts here with Shelly and Sands for $193,690 to mill out the bad areas in that road and fill them with asphalt,” Maiden told the county commissioners on Tuesday. Maiden expressed some urgency to get this work done so that a contractor can begin the repaving the road. However, the Shelly and Sands contracts can’t be signed until the grant agreement is completed or there is an adequate guarantee that the funding will be coming.