One local manufacturing company is looking at anywhere between a thirty-to-fifty percent business increase by next year.
Westermeyer Industries was started in 2001 and manufactures products used in commercial air conditioning and refrigeration. Located on Route 100 between I-72 and Bluffs, Westermeyer Industries was started by Gary Westermeyer, who joined WLDS’ AM Conversation today to discuss manufacturing week along with President of the Jacksonville Regional Economic Development Corporation Paul Ellis.
Westermeyer says his company has grown steadily over the first 16 years, and due to recent circumstances, is looking at even more increases in the coming months.
“Growth was pretty phenomenal and continues to be so. Early on in the business it was a lot of scratching for orders, but once you got the ball rolling things started to take off. We saw some phenomenal growth and here we are sixteen years later with 115 employees servicing all kinds of companies across the globe. Business is looking at a pretty high growth curve right now, we have a competitor that last week went out of business in the Chicago area, so with that, we’re expecting a thirty, forty, fifty percent increase in business probably next year,” says Westermeyer.
Westermeyer explains that various changes to government regulations over the past few decades have caused an evolution in the products his company produces. With that constant change comes increased business opportunities.
“I think in our industry what’s been steady is, of course it’s a lot of refrigeration work. We have to keep produce cold from the time it’s picked from the time it’s consumed. Throughout the past thirty years, multiple changes in regulations have been made relative to greenhouse gas emissions, refrigerants and such, which continues to cause an evolution of the products that we produce for our customer base. And that constant creates opportunities for new products and products that need to be changed,” explains Westermeyer.
He says his company will be hiring around 45 new employees over the next several months. Westermeyer talks about what types of employees the company will be looking to bring on.
“We probably need to be at 160 (employees), and in this day and age, looking for workers is difficult. Unemployment is low, and trying to find people that want to join your team and be a part is a struggle. We’re looking for people who want to be a part of our team, that believe in the vision of the business and the direction that we’re going. So with that, we’re looking for welders, machinists, general laborers, metal workers, but aside from that, we need engineers, we need sales people, we need the support staff and the administration side of the business to be able to help us carry this vision forward and help us grow the business. So really from the top to the bottom is what we’re looking for,” says Westermeyer.
To contact Westermeyer Industries directly, call 217-754-3277.