08/20/04 — Firm will buy factory, save 120 local jobs

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Firm will buy factory, save 120 local jobs

By Matt Shaw
Published in News on August 20, 2004 2:06 PM

Turkington Industries has agreed to buy the APV Baker plant for more than $10 million. The sale will preserve 120 local jobs, say Wayne County officials.

The $10 million deal is expected to be completed Friday, Aug. 27.

"We hope it's a done deal," Joanna Thompson, president of the Economic Development Commission, said this morning. "We'll feel better once everything is set down in ink."

The Goldsboro City Council and Wayne County commissioners each agreed this week to give $150,000 to Turkington Industries as an incentive. The $300,000 local match is intended to be added to a pending state grant for the same amount.

Local officials had feared another company would buy the Ash Street plant and relocate it, which would eliminate 120 jobs paying an average salary of $46,000. EDC officials say Turkington will keep about 80 percent of the jobs at the plant.

Invensys, APV Baker's parent company, has confirmed the deal on its Web site. Company officials said they expected the sale of the Goldsboro plant to be completed by the end of August.

Other parts of the APV Baker business, including operations in Grand Rapids, Mich., and Peterborough, Great Britain, are not included in the deal.

The Goldsboro plant makes equipment for bread and bun plants. It had sales of $34 million last year, according to Invensys.

Turkington, based in Great Britain, also makes equipment for baking plants. Established in 1978, Turkington has traditionally concentrated its marketing in Europe, but it has opened sales offices in Australia. Its acquisition of the local plant is its entry into the North American market.

The buyer's newly formed company will trade initially as Turkingtons APV USA.