A visit to its German headquarters by a state official and a $3 million low-interest loan helped convince a manufacturing company that employs 40 people to stay and expand in Windsor.
“The Department of Economic and Community Development has gone above and beyond expectations,” Michael Kraemer, the general manager of Leipold, a precision manufacturer, said Wednesday.
Kraemer said the company was approached by the “Carolinas about a year ago” but a visit to its headquarters in Germany by DECD Deputy Commissioner Ronald Angelo Jr. and a $3 million loan, which will be partially forgiven if the company creates 10, 20, 30 or 40 jobs, convinced company officials to stay.
Kraemer said none of the officials from the other states visited the headquarters and it showed a lot of respect. That respect was a large reason why it stayed.
The company also received a $3 million manufacturers loan. It will pay 1 percent for 10 years with principal deferred for the first six years. The state will forgive $1 million if it retains 40 jobs and creates 10 within four years, according to a press release. Beyond that, each new position may be eligible for an additional $100,000 forgiveness, to a maximum of $2 million in total if 20 net new jobs are created. It currently employs 40 people at its Windsor location.
It plans on increasing its facility from 15,000 to 35,000 square feet.
The company, which manufactures components for the automotive, electrical, hydraulic, pneumatic, and telecommunication industries, first established a presence in Connecticut in 1998 and is a family-owned company in Germany.
During his tour of the facility Wednesday, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy thanked Kraemer for his work with the Asnuntuck Community College manufacturing apprenticeship program. Kraemer sits on Asnuntuck’s machining advisory board and helps train and hire future machinists. Kraemer said two of its full-time employees are graduates of the Asnuntuck program and a third is serving an apprenticeship at Leipold.
“I’ve said for years that precision manufacturing is the manufacturing that we can win at in Connecticut,” Malloy said.