A global supplier of robotic equipment and automated systems for the automotive industry is building a massive, $30 million manufacturing facility in The Bluffs Technology Park in Canton, Ga., just outside Atlanta.
The new facility will be the North American headquarters of Becker Robotic Equipment. It is another feather in the cap for government and industry leaders who are working to position the Peach State as a leader in developing emerging technologies for the automotive and mobility industry.
The high-profile tenant intends to build three buildings on the property in Cherokee County. They will be adjacent to one another. Plans for the facility are still being drawn up, but the company says the buildings will be designed with clean energy solutions in mind, such as solar panels.
Johan Broekhuijsen of Becker Robotic Equipment Corp. says the decision to invest in Georgia was based on several factors.
“The investment in Georgia builds on our previous success in the state and enables us to bring about a new phase of growth for our high-tech manufacturing operations, incorporated in a mixed-use, campus-style development with beautiful homes and astonishing recreational areas.
“Georgia’s business environment, particularly regarding e-mobility, has been critical in this regard. The available workforce, business environment and support on all levels drove the decision to remain in the state.”
Andries Broekhuijsen of Becker’s global headquarters in Germany, says the company will continue to work with local officials as the Georgia facility takes shape.
Georgia is fast becoming a hub for the automotive industry and jobs associated with the sector. In 2022, automotive projects created thousands of new jobs across the state.
The new facility will deliver tens of millions of dollars in investment and create 137 new jobs in the Cherokee and Canton area.
The company is presently looking to hire for sales and applications engineers, automotive project managers, non-automotive project managers, inside sales support staff, project engineers, office administrators, HR generalists, manufacturing technicians and customer and service technicians.
According to Georgia authorities, automotive companies are increasingly choosing to locate in Georgia because they can gain a competitive advantage from the state’s prime central location, extensive infrastructure for easy access to market, a highly skilled workforce and a recognized business-friendly climate.
The state has been an established automotive manufacturing centre since 1909, when the first automobile was assembled there.
The global commerce team at the Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD) worked on the project with the Cherokee County Development Authority, Georgia Quick Start and Georgia EMC.
The long-term relationship between the State of Georgia and Germany is extensive.
In January 2020, Georgia Governor Brian Kemp led an economic development mission to Germany, where Georgia’s new and expanded Munich office officially opened.
Kemp said in a statement the state continues to attract companies like Becker because it has a highly skilled workforce, reliable infrastructure and a strong trade network.
“Last year alone, the automotive industry created more than 16,000 jobs for hardworking Georgians across the state, and we’ll continue to build on that momentum,” he said. “We’re grateful for Becker’s decision to locate their North American headquarters in Georgia and look forward to their expanding impact on the Peach State.”
Becker, headquartered in Dülmen, Germany, was founded in 1993 with the aim of supplying accessories and integrated automated systems, mainly for the automotive industry.
GDEcD commissioner Pat Wilson said German companies have been key partners in the growth of Georgia’s automotive industry for years, and the team is excited for Becker to become a larger part of Georgia’s story.
“I had the opportunity to meet with Becker in Germany, and I was struck by the company’s innovative spirit and collaborative approach that has made them a successful partner in Georgia.”
Metro Atlanta Chamber president and CEO Katie Kirkpatrick said Metro Atlanta is ideally suited for Becker’s new North American headquarters and manufacturing facility, given its thriving automotive and mobility ecosystem.
Local officials touted the benefits and importance of Becker Robotics’ decision to locate the new facility in Georgia.
“Becker Robotics is the pinnacle of high-tech manufacturing, exactly the kind of company we want to bring to Cherokee County,” says Harry Johnson, chairman of the Cherokee County Board of Commissioners.