POLY-WOOD IN SYRACUSE: Outdoor furniture manufacturer to grow in Kosciusko County

SYRACUSE - Poly-Wood, Inc., a manufacturer of outdoor furniture, announced plans today to expand its operations here, creating up to 50 new jobs by 2015.The company will invest $2.78 million to expand production operations and purchase a 25,000 square-foot facility and add a 35,000 square-foot addition on the company's current Kosciusko County campus. The new production operations, which include plastic lumber extrusions and furniture manufacturing, are slated to be operational later next year."We're pleased to have a high-growth company like Poly-Wood continue to invest and grow in Indiana," said Dan Hasler, Secretary of Commerce and chief executive officer of the Indiana Economic Development Corporation. "Our state is leading the nation with our top-rated business climate and low-tax policies to help secure the growth of these up-and-coming businesses."Poly-Wood, which currently has 87 full-time employees in Indiana, plans to begin hiring additional production associates in March."We are very grateful to the state of Indiana, the Kosciusko Economic Development Corporation and town of Syracuse, all of whom were influential in helping to secure this expansion," said Doug Rassi, president and co-founder of Poly-Wood. "The support of these important players and the continued growth of our organization have helped us increase our production capabilities while cementing our company as a Hoosier business."In 1990, Poly-Wood founders Doug Rassi and Mark Phillabaum established the company to refurbish recycled milk jugs into plastic lumber to be used in outdoor furniture. Recently, the company acquired Syracuse-based Image Group, a provider of graphic creation and production services, to enhance the company's marketing and media services.The Indiana Economic Development Corporation offered Poly-Wood, Inc. up to $100,000 in conditional tax credits based on the company's job creation plans. These tax credits are performance-based, meaning until Hoosiers are hired, the company is not eligible to claim incentives. Up to $200,000 from the state's Industrial Development Grant Fund will be made available to Kosciusko County for rail improvements at the site. The town of Syracuse will consider additional financial support for the project at the request of the Kosciusko Economic Development Corporation."It's very important to take care of existing businesses and maintain an environment conducive to expansion," said Henry DeJulia, Syracuse town manager. "We're very excited to have this innovative, green company bring 21st century jobs to Syracuse."Poly-Wood's announcement comes just four days after Stens, a global supplier of replacement parts for the outdoor power equipment industry, announced plans to expand its headquarters in Jasper. As part of the project, the company will invest $2.28 million and create up to 98 new jobs by 2015.About Poly-WoodFor over 20 years, Poly-Wood, Inc. has been the leader in developing casual outdoor furniture with plastic lumber. Today Poly-Wood occupies over 200,000 square-feet of manufacturing space. Our plastic lumber extrusion process is modern and efficient. We utilize 3D design, CNC fabrication and lean manufacturing techniques. Poly-Wood now offers thousands of SKUs and ships a majority of its furniture next day. About IEDCCreated by Governor Mitch Daniels in 2005 to replace the former Department of Commerce, the Indiana Economic Development Corporation is governed by a 12-member board chaired by Governor Daniels. Dan Hasler serves as the chief executive officer of the IEDC.The IEDC oversees programs enacted by the General Assembly including tax credits, workforce training grants and public infrastructure assistance. All tax credits are performance-based. Therefore, companies must first invest in Indiana through job creation or capital investment before incentives are paid. A company who does not meet its full projections only receives a percentage of the incentives proportional to its actual investment. For more information about IEDC, visit www.iedc.in.gov.