Yamaha Marine broke ground Monday at a 28-acre site in Greenfield, Indiana, where its Yamaha Marine Precision Propellers, Inc. (YPPI) division will build a state-of-the-art, 54,000-square-foot propeller foundry.
“We had three goals in building this new facility,” said YPPI General Manager Jonathon Burns in front of an audience of Hancock County and Greenfield city government officials, Yamaha Marine management and YPPI employees.
“First, we want to be able to keep up with the high demand for propellers, both for our new outboards and aftermarket needs. It’s been a challenge keeping up with that demand over the last few years.”
“Second, we want to be able to build a facility where we can utilize the latest manufacturing equipment and processes to increase our output,” Burns added.
Burns told Trade Only Today separately that the new facility will allow YPPI to boost production by as much as 67 percent to more than 100,000 propellers. The current factory in Indianapolis produces approximately 60,000 outboard propellers each year.
Lastly, Burns said, “We want the new facility to be a better place for our employees to work, a place where they have the absolute best tools and facilities to do their jobs. YPPI’s employees are the best in the business, and we want them to have a great place to go to work every day.”
The $18 million project has been in the works for five years and is being built with tax abatement support from Hancock County and Greenfield city governments. “The new facility will bring about 30 good-paying manufacturing jobs to Greenfield,” Burns said. “There will also be a substantial number of construction jobs coming online as we begin building.” Greenfield is situated about 20 miles east of YPPI’s current propeller facility in Indianapolis. Combined, both facilities will have 200 employees.
Burns expects the Greenfield factory to be up and running by Q3 2020. “We will move all foundry and casting operations to the Greenfield facility when it is open, and then ship all propellers to our Indianapolis operation for grinding, polishing and quality assurance before shipping,” he said.
The property was purchased with an eye toward future expansion, according to Burns. “The first facility will not be the last one built here,” he said. “There will be expansion into new buildings and facilities long after I retire from Yamaha.”
“Our primary goal is to help our customers create lasting memories with their family and friends on the water, and this new facility will help us reach that goal,” said Yamaha Marine U.S. President Kazuhiro Kuwata. “This is a very exciting phase in the history of our company.”