BRADENTON –Sun Hydraulics Corp. (NASDAQ: SNHY) has opened its third facility in the Sarasota-Bradenton area – a 75,000-square-foot manufacturing facility adjacent to its existing operations in South Manatee County, according to Sharon Hillstrom, president and chief executive officer of the Bradenton Area Economic Development Corp.
The expansion facilitates growth for Sun and the EDC says that over time, it could lead to new jobs in the Sarasota-Bradenton area. Sun Hydraulics designs and manufactures high performance screw-in hydraulic cartridge valves and manifolds which are used to control force, speed and motion as integral components in fluid power systems.
Sun’s products allow machine designers to develop innovative and efficient control systems for all types of capital goods. The company’s customers are global. Sun has approximately 900 total employees around the world, about 700 of which are located in Bradenton-Sarasota.
Over the next several weeks, Sun will move operations currently located in a Lenexa, Kansas facility to the new factory in Manatee. Sun’s current manifold production in Manatee County will also be relocated to the new factory over the same time period.
“We are very happy to begin moving into our third facility in the Sarasota-Bradenton area,” said Allen Carlson, Sun Hydraulics’ president and chief executive officer. “This will help us to better coordinate our product and shipping environment and improve our expedite capability, while ensuring we maintain our industry best delivery reliability. We will be able to reconfigure our operations and consolidate certain aspects of the business that will make us more productive.”
In 2011, Sun Hydraulics completed construction on improvements to utilities to serve an existing building at 701 Tallevast Road and the new building at 803 Tallevast. Combined capital investment for the utilities project and the new manufacturing facility is estimated at $20 million. Also in 2011, Sun renovated its headquarters and manufacturing facility in Sarasota County at a cost of approximately $1.5 million.
“By adding a third facility in the Manatee-Sarasota area, Sun Hydraulics proves the viability of our region as a location for specialty manufacturers with a global reach,” Hillstrom said. The EDC collaborated with Manatee County Government for economic development incentives and the rapid response permitting program to facilitate Sun’s expansion.
Sun qualified for a total of $396,420 in performance-based incentives from Manatee County Government, as well as $36,378 in transportation impact fee incentives. The incentives are based on the company adding 361 jobs over five years at an average annual salary that is 15 percent higher than the county average.
“Sun Hydraulics has been an excellent corporate partner and employer in Manatee County for many years, and this latest expansion signals the company’s ongoing commitment to this region,” said Ed Hunzeker, Manatee County administrator. “The Manatee Board of County Commission is dedicated to accelerating the pace of job growth in the community. Performance-based incentives and a business-friendly approach are essential to this effort.”