Startup OBT Ashland to create 55 jobs with $45.5 million investment in Greenup County
GREENUP, Ky. — Omnis Building Technologies (OBT) Ashland, a startup manufacturer of economical, sustainable and fire-resistant doors and cabinetry, announced it will invest $45.5 million into the commonwealth and create 55 well-paying jobs with a new facility in Greenup County.
Using renewable resources and advanced materials, OBT Ashland will manufacture doors and cabinets with the construction of a 100,000-square-foot facility at the Wurtland Riverport. The doors and cabinets are to be available wholesale but primarily will be used inside OBT’s own energy-efficient homes, which are made with panels called Composite Insulated Building Units (CIBUs). The CIBUs are to be produced at a facility in Bluefield, West Virginia, which will complement the investment in Kentucky. Together, they will provide affordable, high-quality, energy-efficient homes that are readily available to satisfy the growing housing market.
Jonathan Hodson, president of OBT, said major factors in choosing the location included the ability to serve a substantial portion of the U.S. population and the existing infrastructure, such as direct river and rail access.
“We are excited to expand our presence in Appalachia and to bring family-sustaining jobs to Kentucky by manufacturing revolutionary products to assist in solving the nation’s housing crisis,” Hodson said. “Our collaboration with successful local businesses like Wright Concrete is ensuring our mission will be achieved.”
Another goal of OBT is to specifically support growth in communities impacted by the decline of coal and create an economically diverse ecosystem with job creation, capital investment, workforce development and re-employment opportunities.
OBT Ashland adds to Kentucky’s manufacturing presence, which includes nearly 5,000 facilities that employ approximately 250,000 people across the state. In 2021, manufacturers contributed to 13,900 new jobs in the commonwealth with $10.5 billion in new investments.
To encourage investment and job growth in the community, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) today preliminarily approved a 15-year incentive agreement with the company under the Kentucky Business Investment program. The performance-based agreement can provide up to $2.1 million in tax incentives based on the company’s investment of $45.5 million and annual targets of:
- Creation and maintenance of 55 Kentucky-resident, full-time jobs across 15 years; and
- Paying an average hourly wage of $33 including benefits across those jobs.
By meeting its annual targets over the agreement term, the company can be eligible to keep a portion of the new tax revenue it generates. The company may claim eligible incentives against its income tax liability and/or wage assessments.
In addition, the company can receive resources from Kentucky’s workforce service providers. Those include no-cost recruitment and job placement services, reduced-cost customized training and job-training incentives.