ABB facility

Swiss multinational company ABB will expand its workforce by 403 jobs and consolidate its hub in Mebane.

The Swiss multinational equipment maker company ABB is planning to expand its workforce by 403 jobs while consolidating its hub in Mebane.

The news was announced Wednesday morning by the Orange County Board of Commissioners, County Manager’s Office and the Economic Development Department.

The company — which makes products including those in electrification, robotics, and industrial automation — plans to merge a large portion of its products into one location in Mebane. ABB purchased the location in June 2018 that previously served as a GE Industrial Solutions facility. According to the release provided by the Orange County Government, ABB purchased the facility to, “strengthen its position in electrification globally and expand their access to the North American market.”

ABB has a current workforce of over 500 employees and plans to invest $39.9 million to add 200,000 square feet to its already 400,000 square feet facility.

The new jobs added to the community with the expansion of the company would offer salaries averaging $70,789 per year. 

There were multiple forces at play that have contributed to expanding the company in Orange County. In addition to the City of Mebane working with Orange County, the State of North Carolina is also collaborating, along with the help of Governor Roy Cooper’s office and the North Carolina Department of Commerce. 

“Companies like ABB expanding their manufacturing operations means jobs and investment that benefit communities well beyond the walls of its facility,” Governor Cooper said in a statement on governor.nc.gov. “North Carolina will work to grow our education programs and improve workforce preparation so that companies continue to choose to grow and invest across our state.”

According to the News & Observer, North Carolina’s Department of Commerce stated that an ABB facility in Mississippi was competing for jobs, which would have resulted in 110 jobs lost in Mebane.

Orange County manager Bonnie Hammersley stated in the release that ABB’s decision to choose Orange County, “is contingent upon the successful negotiation of these items with the State, County and City of Mebane.”

At a Public Hearing of the County Commissioners, Orange County will vote on the local incentives proposed to ABB Tuesday, July 23. The meeting will occur at 7 p.m. and held in Hillsborough at Whitted Building, 300 West Tryon Street.