Expansion can be a scary word, or it can mean opportunity.
At Sanders Pre-Cast Concrete Systems in Whitestown, Ind., it meant the latter as the company expanded and enhanced an existing facility to make more room for a new product line.
Discussion about expanding began in October 2016 when a potential customer contacted Sanders to consider re-entering the U.S. Midwest warehouse wall market. After short deliberation, the answer was yes, which started the ball rolling on acquiring investments for new equipment, storage, employees and more.
“One of our existing buildings was previously used to manufacture hollowcore walls,” said Ian McKenna, who heads up business development. “To accommodate the expansion, we completely retrofitted this 48,000-square-foot building in record time, installing 1,360 linear feet of new sandwich wall beds and the supporting infrastructure.
“And we expanded our storage area by several acres to the south of the plant.”
The majority of construction was performed by on-site personnel, but local contractors and suppliers were hired for materials and installation, adding additional benefits to the community.
Management is also exploring new technology, such as automated laser plotters to map out the actual wall dimensions and cut outs. At full capacity, the plant will have the ability to manufacture more than 80,000 square feet of warehouse walls weekly.
According to McKenna, expansion has sparked plenty of excitement throughout the entire company since it adds to the existing mechanically stabilized earth wall and box structure product lines in the adjacent 120,000-square-foot facility.
“Obviously, this is a huge growth spurt for our company that allows us to build on the more than 40 years of experience that owner Mark Sanders has in the field of concrete,” McKenna said. “This also gave us the opportunity to partner with IEDC (Indiana Economic Development Corporation), Boone County and Whitestown, as well as our advisers at Katz, Sapper & Miller to ensure that we were working with both the local community and taking advantage of all the available tax benefits.”