It doesn’t take long to see the changing face of manufacturing staples in Volusia County.
Strategically located in the thriving central Florida marketplace east of Orlando along the I-4/I-95 highways, Volusia County has always been a good geographic location for manufacturers with over 450 companies historically calling the area home, according to Jayne Fifer, president/CEO, Volusia Manufacturers Association. In recent years the area has seen a significant investment with major manufacturing operations as many have expanded or announced plans to expand in the very near future.
Boston Whaler, famous boat manufacturer known worldwide for its top of the line marine products, continues to be a large part of Volusia’s manufacturing sector, employing more than 1000 employees. The company just completed a $42-million expansion to house its new design and R&D center on 60 acres north of its main manufacturing site. Nearby, Dougherty Manufacturing, recently moved into a 200,000 facility in Edgewater to expand its product line catering to a national and international customer base of major theme parks and boat and automotive companies which require services ranging from water-jetting, bending, shearing, mold creation, 3D printing and welding.
German medical products manufacturer B.Braun, which expanded its existing plant and opened a distribution center last year is finishing a $100-million, 54,000-sq.-ft. expansion to the former Gambro Plant it purchased, bringing in at least 175 new jobs to Daytona Beach, tripling the company’s workforce. The company is also moving into a newly constructed 400,000-sq.-ft. distribution center and is planning a third investment into a “new state-of-the-art facility in Daytona Beach bringing its total investment into the area over $500 mllion within the past 3 years.
DaVita Labs, a leading provider in kidney care services that works with dialysis organizations and physician practices to serve nearly 200,000 patients annually, recently celebrated the opening of a 160,000 square-foot campus in DeLand. The new $30 million medical lab now employs over 450 teammates in the DeLand Municipal Airport’s Northwest Business Park and proved to be "the largest building permit in DeLand's history," said DeLand Mayor Bob Apgar. "More importantly, DaVita's investment in our community speaks to the strength of the local talented workforce and the thriving business community.” Adjacent to the new DaVita facility at the DeLand Municipal Airport is the new Sport Aviation Village. The area is designated as the world center for parachute and light sport aviation design and manufacturing for civilians and the military with more than two dozen companies calling the area home and employing over 600 workers.
Food manufacturing is the latest craze to be added to Volusia County in recent months with new manufacturing and HQ investments from Future Foods Enterprises, developer of plant-based protein and meat alternative products, as well as the Smart Baking Company, manufacturing healthy baked goods. The companies plan to hire over 200 workers at their new state of the art facilities in early 2020.
Among other notable Volusia-based manufacturers eying expansions include: Raydon, virtual training environments; Teledyne Marine, technology solutions for marine applications; Microflex and Microflex Automotive, disposable gloves and flexible metal hoses; Germfree Laboratories, modular containment labs; Hudson Technologies, deep drawn metals; BBK Performance, specialty auto parts; SeaMax Aviation, recreational aircraft; and Kingspan, commercial insulated metal roof and wall panel systems.
The overall growth and diversification of the Volusia County manufacturing industry show no signs of slowing down as more projects continue to be placed on the drawing board. To learn more about Volusia County manufacturing visit www.teamvolusiaedc.com.
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This article was prepared by Volusia County EDC, which is solely responsible for its content.