Great Dane executives and local leaders officially cut the ribbon on the new refrigerated trailer plant in Statesboro GA. From left: Dean Engelage, executive vice-president, sales and strategic planning, Great Dane; Bill Crown, chief executive officer and president, Great Dane; Sam Gupta, executive vice-president, manufacturing, Great Dane; Rick Mullininx, executive vice-president, engineering, Great Dane; Alan Whiten, director of manufacturing engineering, Great Dane; and J Garrett Nevil, chairman, Bulloch County Commission.
Little more than a year after breaking ground on its new refrigerated trailer manufacturing plant in Statesboro GA, the Great Dane facility has opened for production after a ribbon-cutting ceremony.
Great Dane's plant encompasses 450,000 square feet, including office space and a 3,000-sq-ft climate-controlled, noise-free customer preview center. This particular facility is dedicated to manufacturing the company's new Everest refrigerated trailers, the TL model reefer for truckload carriers, and the CL model reefer built for multi-temp and foodservice operations, especially those in the Southeast.
Joining a network of seven other strategically located Great Dane manufacturing plants, the Statesboro facility incorporates technologies including robotic welding, automated production processes, computer-controlled foaming operations, and an optimized material handling system for quality and efficiency. In accordance with Great Dane's pledge to keep its environmental impact as low as possible, numerous green initiatives have been put in place, including energy-efficient lighting and use of a building management system to automatically control lights, air quality, and building temperature; programs to reduce water consumption; and use of load monitors to ensure optimal energy consumption.
Perhaps most notable about Great Dane's newest manufacturing facility is its location on 118 acres in Bulloch County, just 50 miles from the company's roots in Savannah GA. The location was selected for a variety of reasons, including its economy. As the state unemployment rate hovers above 9%, the plant will bring more than 400 jobs to the area.
The Great Dane manufacturing plant in Statesboro will begin operating with one production line, with a second line and second shift to start up later in 2012. At full capacity, the new facility will be able to produce more than 5,000 trailers annually.