Release time : 2015-06-11 13:39:32
The Timken Company (USA; NYSE: TKR) is investing in additional production at its Tyger River plant in Union, South Carolina.
The project will add capacity to produce large bore specialty bearings for main rotor shafts and turbines in the wind energy market. Tyger River is Timken's only non-automotive bearing manufacturing facility in South Carolina, with potential to add the large bearings.
The Tyger River project was announced shortly before groundbreaking took place at Timken's primary wind turbine bearing focus -- an 80%-owned joint venture plant in China, XEMC Hunan Bearings Co. Ltd.
While apparently not adding capacity in the strictest sense, Timken is talking about this investment as more of a realignment for Tyger River's output going forward. For example, few, if any, jobs are expected to be created.
Jim Griffith, President and CEO, said: "This investment exemplifies how we're reshaping our portfolio to grow and optimize our business from top to bottom. We stand to achieve greater returns by refocusing existing assets and investing in new capacity to serve our most promising market sectors, which certainly includes wind energy."
Although Tyger River will apparently not be expanded specifically for turbine bearings, it has just completed a separate expansion program for the industrial bearing service operation that also added 15 positions.
While some progress has already been made, the bulk of the project is scheduled to start in early 2009, and production capacity forecast to be online sometime in early 2010.
Other wind energy businesses are active in South Carolina. The GE gas turbine business unit in Greenville is now on track to manufacture 1,000 wind turbine machine heads per year.
Little of South Carolina's turbine parts output is destined to stay nearby, however; the state is generally considered one of the worst potential locations for generating power via wind energy.