Morooka to Open First Manufacturing Operation in U.S.

July 25, 2012
U.S. has become the rubber track carriers manufacturer's leading export destination

Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell announced on Tuesday that Morooka America, under a license agreement with Japan-based Morooka Co., Ltd, a manufacturer of rubber track carriers, will establish a manufacturing operation in Hanover County.

The first Morooka Track Carrier plant in the U.S., along with its sister company Virginia Steel Specialties LLC, will establish two product assembly operations. 

"The United States has become Morooka Japan's leading export destination," said company president Masami Morooka. "I am proud to have the Morooka carrier built here in America."

The facilities will encompass 50,000 square feet and an output of 100 machines annually valued at more than $15 million. The project will create up to 50 new jobs over the next three years. Morooka offers six different models of equipment that have a range of uses from clearing land for pipeline installation to agricultural applications.

"The new Morooka America production facility is an important strategic move for the Morooka product line in the Western Hemisphere, and we are thrilled that the company chose Virginia for its first U.S. location. The new plant will build two of the most popular models in the company's line, and is a welcome addition to the corporate base in Hanover County," said Governor McDonnell.

According to  Jim Cheng, Virginia Secretary of Commerce and Trade the company chose this Virginia location due to "the proximity to major interstates, available infrastructure and central location."

Morooka America is a subsidiary of the Richmond Group LLC, a holding company for construction-related firms geared around the Morooka product and located in Ashland, Virginia. 

The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with Hanover County and the Greater Richmond Partnership to secure the project for Virginia. Through its Virginia Jobs Investment Program, the Virginia Department of Business Assistance will provide funding and services to support the company's recruitment, training and retraining activities.

About the Author

Adrienne Selko | Senior Editor

Focus: Workforce, Talent 

Follow Me on Twitter: @ASelkoIW

Bio: Adrienne Selko has written about many topics over the 17 years she has been with the publication and currently focuses on workforce development strategies. Previously Adrienne was in corporate communications at a medical manufacturing company as well as a large regional bank. She is the author of Do I Have to Wear Garlic Around My Neck? which made the Cleveland Plain Dealer's best sellers list. She is also a senior editor at Material Handling & Logistics and EHS Today

Editorial mission statement: Manufacturing is the enviable position of creating products, processes and policies that solve the world’s problems. When the industry stepped up to manufacture what was necessary to combat the pandemic, it revealed its true nature. My goal is to showcase the sector’s ability to address a broad range of workforce issues including technology, training, diversity & inclusion, with a goal of enticing future generations to join this amazing sector.

Why I find manufacturing interesting: On my first day working for a company that made medical equipment such as MRIs, I toured the plant floor. On every wall was a photo of a person, mostly children. I asked my supervisor why this was the case and he said that the work we do at this company has saved these people’s lives. “We never forget how important our work is and everyone’s contribution to that.” From that moment on I was hooked on manufacturing.

I have talked with many people in this field who have transformed their own career development to assist others. For example, companies are hiring those with disabilities, those previously incarcerated and other talent pools that have been underutilized. I have talked with leaders who have brought out the best in their workforce, as well as employees doing their best work while doing good for the world. 

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