The Chattanooga area's position in the clean energy sector received a gust of confidence Friday with a German company's purchase and expansion plan for a wind turbine tower manufacturing plant, officials said.
SIAG Schaaf Industrie AG has bought Aerisyn LLC's plantlocated off Riverfront Parkway with plans to add 120 jobs and invest $3 million.
SIAG officials expect the Aerisyn plant to reach full production by mid-2011 and employ 240 people.
"SIAG is a global company with lengthy experience in wind power technology and I believe its Tennessee presence will only serve to strengthen our state's reputation as a center for clean energy," Gov. Phil Bredesen said.
Financial terms of the transaction weren't disclosed by SIAG, which is a player in wind power manufacturing globally. Production at full capacity in Chattanooga means building about 250 towers a year, according to the company.
"Besides the location in Chattanooga ... we are also planning to construct a further production facility in the Midwest," said SIAG chief executive Rudiger Schaaf in a statement.
Aerisyn officials could not be reached for comment.
Hamilton County Mayor Claude Ramsey said Aerisyn came to the city in 2005.
"Today, we see how our original efforts are continuing to pay dividends," he said.
Chattanooga Mayor Ron Littlefield applauded SIAG's commitment to go above and beyond just the acquisition of the Aerisyn facility.
Tom Edd Wilson, the Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce's chief executive, said that in a year when the national economy has struggled, the area is benefiting from investments of over $1.4 billion by nine companies.
Those companies are currently constructing or expanding facilities that will create 3,000 new jobs, he said.
SIAG developed from a steel constructor into a supplier in the wind energy sector with plants in Germany, the Czech Republic, France, Egypt and now the United States.
Earlier this year, Wacker Chemical Corp. based in Munich, Germany, announced it will build a $1 billion solar power plant near the Hiwassee Industrial Park in Bradley County.