Steyr Arms said it will invest $2.9 million to add a manufacturing component to its current facility in Bessemer adding up to 10 jobs. The Austrian-based company’s Bessemer location is its only U.S. subsidiary that imports, distributes and assembles Steyr firearms, as well as some firearms from Merkel. Steyr plans to relocate the manufacturing of its products for U.S. sales from Austria to Bessemer.
“This expansion represents a great deal of trust in our operations in Bessemer, on behalf of our parent company,” said Scott O’Brien, president of Steyr Arms. “Our operations and workforce here are world class, and we are proud to be able to serve our U.S. customers in a new and efficient way.
The investment will mainly include the purchase of new equipment to process components used in the production of firearms and final assembly. The project is expected to be fully completed in June 2019, but it should be manufacturing on-site by the end of this year.
Steyr Arms is the U.S. subsidiary of Austrian-based Steyr Mannlicher, one of the world’s oldest and most prestigious firearms manufacturers. Steyr produces comprehensive lines of premium hunting rifles and precision sporting and tactical firearms. In 2013, the company invested $1.7 million to move its local operations from Trussville to Bessemer and has since doubled its workforce. It currently employs 15 people in Bessemer.
“Steyr Arms has been a great addition to the Bessemer community and we are proud they have chosen to expand their operations here,” said Bessemer Mayor Kenneth E. Gulley. “Adding jobs for our citizens and investment to our city is a priority, and with partners like Steyr Arms growing in Bessemer we are able to leverage a world-class reputation to attract other businesses.”
Steyr Arms worked with the City of Bessemer, Jefferson County, the Alabama Department of Commerce and the Birmingham Business Alliance on the expansion.
“The entire Commission is excited that Steyr Arms Inc. has decided to expand its operations in Jefferson County,” said Jefferson County Commissioner David Carrington. “Steyr Arms is well known throughout the entire world for manufacturing high-quality firearms. This expansion further reinforces the positive business climate and continued economic growth that our county is experiencing.”
Greg Canfield, secretary of the Alabama Department of Commerce, said Alabama is proving to be an ideal location for firearms makers and manufacturers.
“Steyr Arms’ decision to add a manufacturing component to its operation in Bessemer shows that Alabama provides an ideal environment for firearms makers, along with many other manufacturing businesses,” said Canfield. “In addition, every time a company expands in Alabama, it transmits a vote of confidence to the world that the state is a place where success can be found.”
Foreign direct investment in the region remains strong because of companies like Steyr, said Jeff Traywick, senior project manager for the BBA, who is working with the company on the expansion.
“We are excited to see this prominent company, with a history going back more than 150 years, continuing their investment in Bessemer,” said Traywick. “The location of Steyr’s facility has been an asset to their wholesale distribution activities and we look forward to seeing production added at this location. This project is a prime example of growing foreign investment in the Birmingham region.”
The Birmingham Business Alliance is the lead economic development organization for the Birmingham region. For more information about the BBA visit its website at www.birminghambusinessalliance.com.
For more on Steyr Arms, visit its website at steyarms.com.