17 August 2012

Wheeling-Nisshin to invest $28 million in its Follansbee facility in West Virginia

Wheeling, W.Va. – 17 August 2012 – Wheeling-Nisshin announced that preparations are being made to design, upgrade and modify the Company’s AGL line in order to introduce a new coating process called ZAM®. The new product will utilize a combination of zinc, aluminum and magnesium for coating steel and is expected to be available by the end of 2013. ZAM’s coating, in short, provides superior corrosion resistance as compared to other conventional metal coatings. It was developed by and is currently being produced by parent company Nisshin Steel Co., Ltd. Wheeling-Nisshin will be the first coating line in the United States to utilize the ZAM® formula.

Noboru “Ricky” Onishi, Wheeling-Nisshin’s President and CEO, Fumio Oda, the Chairman of the Board of Wheeling-Nisshin and West Virginia Governor Earl Ray Tomblin made the announcement at a special news gathering held on the Company grounds in Follansbee, WV. 

Onishi explained that the ZAM® product is a natural extension for the current operations and will allow the Company and its employees to grow into a new area of production. The $28 million dollar investment would not have been possible without the help of the West Virginia Development Office, the West Virginia Economic Development Authority and the company’s good relations and support in the community including the Brooke County Commission, the Brooke County Assessor, the City of Follansbee, the Brooke County Board of Education and the Business Development Corporation of the Northern Panhandle. 

"Today is a terrific day for West Virginia. Wheeling-Nisshin's announcement to invest $28 million into their current operations at the Follansbee facility is another vote of confidence for both our state and its workforce," said Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin. "When I met with the Nisshin executives in Japan a couple months ago, they noted time and time again how impressed they were with their West Virginia employees-we truly have a world-class workforce. We have done a tremendous job of creating a business climate that recruits companies to the Mountain State, and our hard work is paying off." 

"Wheeling-Nisshin has been a key part of the Follansbee community and a crucial part of the steel industry in West Virginia, and I'm proud to have helped bring them here 26 years ago," said Sen. Jay Rockefeller. "And, today, it's great to see them advancing their efforts and continuing their commitment to the state by announcing their new product line, ZAM. This is the company's largest investment to the Aluminum and Galvanizing line since it was commissioned. With this diversification, the company continues to meet the needs of the industry with the next generation of building materials." 

Source: Wheeling-Nisshin and State of West Virginia