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Tue June 18 2024

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JCB breaks ground in Texas

6 Jun Construction has begun on a new US$ 500m JCB factory in North America – the biggest-ever investment in the company’s history.

Lord Bamford with his daughter Alice at the ground-breaking ceremony
Lord Bamford with his daughter Alice at the ground-breaking ceremony

The start of construction was signalled at an official ground-breaking ceremony on 4th June 2024 at the site in San Antonio, Texas, where Alice Bamford, daughter of company chairman Anthony Bamford, cut the first sod of earth.

Work on the 720,000 sq ft (67,000 sqm) factory is under way on a 400-acre site and will create 1,500 new jobs over five years. It will be JCB’s second largest plant, after its World Headquarters in Rocester, Staffordshire.

The San Antonio factory will make Loadall telescopic handlers and aerial access equipment, with production scheduled to start in 2026. The factory will also have the capacity to expand into the manufacture of other products in the future.

Lord Bamford said:  “Construction equipment manufacturers sell more than 300,000 machines every year in North America, making it the single largest market in the world. JCB has been growing its share of this important market steadily over the past few years and the time is now right to invest in our manufacturing capacity in North America, where we already have one factory. JCB really has come a considerable way since we sold our first machine here 60 years ago and it gives me immense pleasure to see how our business has grown in North America.”

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JCB chief executive Graeme Macdonald said: “JCB’s business in North America has made tremendous progress in the past few years and the opportunity for growth here is vast. This record investment gives us a fantastic opportunity to build on our success and we look forward to the completion of this great new facility.”

Richard Fox-Marrs, president & CEO of JCB North America, said: “The Loadall telescopic handler is JCB’s biggest selling product in North America and it is also the single largest market for aerial access equipment worldwide, and therefore, it makes great sense to build these two ranges here. Texas is an obvious choice for our new North American manufacturing facility, not least because the state is the largest consumer of construction equipment in the USA. San Antonio is also the logical choice as a location for our new factory because of its central location, proximity to the supply chain and great local labour force.”

JCB sold its first machine in North America in 1964 and opened its first manufacturing plant there in 2001 in Savannah, Georgia, which employs 1,000 people. The new facility will manufacture machines for customers specifically in North America.

Around the world JCB employs 19,000 people and has 22 factories, including 11 in the UK, seven in India, and others in Brazil and China. The company will mark its 80th anniversary in 2025.

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