Randy Boyd is commissioner of economic and community development in Tennessee.
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In this Tuesday, July 26, 2016, photo, Republican Gov. Bill Haslam speaks at a grant announcement in Camden, Tenn. Haslam said he has been happy to lend his support to state lawmakers facing tough primary challenges while making grant announcements around the state.

Automotive components maker E & E Manufacturing of Tennessee will expand its Athens, Tenn., facility, investing $23.5 million and creating 123 new jobs.

Randy Boyd, commissioner for the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development, said Wednesday that the company has landed three new contracts which is allowing the McMinn County business to grow.

"Nearly 344,000 Tennesseans work in manufacturing, which means almost one out of every eight Tennesseans with a job works in manufacturing," said Boyd.

E & E Manufacturing is a "tier one" automotive supplier and has been in business for over 50 years. The company manufactures high quality stamped and welded components for many automotive companies.

Company General Manager Dan Scherle said its location is strategic to its customer base. The business will expand production capabilities in Athens to keep up with the company's growing demand, adding 76,000 square feet to the current facility. That will give the site a total 285,000 square feet, the company said.

Gov. Bill Haslam said in a statement that Tennessee leads the nation in advanced industry job growth.

"Our manufacturing sector is further strengthened when existing companies like E & E Manufacturing choose to expand here," he said.

McMinn County Mayor John Gentry said the expansion will have "a lasting positive impact on our community."

"McMinn County strives to provide an environment where companies like E & E Manufacturing can flourish," he said.

E & E manufactures heavy gauge stamped metal fasteners, progressive die metal stampings and added assemblies. The company said its clients include tier one and tier two companies as well as original equipment manufacturers.

E & E has two affiliated companies, Globe Tech Manufactured Products, which specializes in prototypes, welding and fabricating, and Die Tech, which designs and produces stamping tools, gauges and specialty instrumentation.

Contact Mike Pare at or 423-757-6318.

Updated at 10:45 p.m. with additional information.