Press Release from the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development
Defense contractor to invest $40 million, create approximately 100 jobs
TOONE, Tenn. – Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam, Department of Economic and Community Development Commissioner Bob Rolfe and Chemring Group officials announced today that the defense contractor will invest $40 million to expand its Kilgore Flares operations in Hardeman County and create approximately 100 jobs.
Kilgore Flares Company is a manufacturing company within Chemring Countermeasures USA (CCM USA), a division of Chemring Group and producer of defense countermeasures for the U.S. military.
“I’d like to thank Kilgore Flares and Chemring for creating additional job opportunities for the residents of Hardeman County,” Haslam said. “Kilgore Flares’ considerable investment in Toone underscores the confidence our existing employers have in Tennessee’s skilled workforce and overall business climate. This expansion is yet another sign that Tennessee will lead in attracting private investment and jobs to our rural communities.”
“For nearly 60 years, Kilgore Flares has been an important part of Hardeman County’s economy, providing hundreds of quality jobs for the residents of this community,” Rolfe said. “This expansion will push Kilgore Flares’ employment to about 375 people and promises to have a meaningful impact on the citizens of Hardeman County for many years to come.”
Kilgore Flares plans to upgrade and expand operations in Toone over the next five years. The company will invest in new technology, processes and equipment. Kilgore Flares plans to replace, refurbish and modernize buildings on its campus. Construction of a new flare extruder and assembly facility and other investments will triple Kilgore Flares’ current production capacity in Hardeman County.
The first expansion phase will begin in the third quarter of 2018. Kilgore Flares anticipates the expansion will be completed in 2022.
“For decades, Chemring Group and its family of companies have been proudly supporting the war fighter,” Chemring Group CEO Michael Flowers said. “This project will transform the facility in Toone by expanding our capacity and promoting further growth opportunities. We are thankful for the support of our public partners and look forward to growing here in Tennessee.”
“I want to acknowledge the Kilgore family: our employees,” Tank Williams, president of Chemring Countermeasures USA, said. “The management team is immensely proud of their hard work and attention to safety as we manufacture our products that protect the war fighters of the United States and other countries.”
In Toone, Kilgore Flares designs, develops and manufactures aerospace and defense countermeasures for the U.S. military. It has operated in Hardeman County since 1960 and currently employs approximately 280 people.
“Hardeman County is very proud to be the home of Kilgore Flares and Chemring Countermeasures,” Hardeman County Mayor Jimmy Sain said. “It is with honor that we produce a product that protects those who protect our freedom all over the world. I appreciate Governor Haslam and TNECD for partnering with us on this expansion and additional jobs.”
“TVA and Bolivar Energy Authority congratulate Kilgore Flares on its decision to expand operations in Hardeman County,” TVA Senior Vice President of Economic Development John Bradley said. “It’s always an exciting day when an existing company is committed to continuing growth in our rural communities and we are pleased to partner with Hardeman County Industrial Development Board, the City of Toone, Hardeman County Chamber of Commerce and Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development to help support new job growth and celebrate this announcement.”
“The Delta Regional Authority is proud of the opportunity to work with Gov. Haslam and invest in the infrastructure in Hardeman County,” DRA Chairman Chris Caldwell said. “This investment will not only help bring in new jobs with expansion but will also provide for future growth and capacity. It is fitting that we can highlight this investment during National Infrastructure Week, and emphasize DRA’s commitment to supporting investments in our entire region that support economic growth.”
Toone and Hardeman County are represented by Sen. Dolores Gresham (R – Somerville), Rep. Ron Gant (R – Rossville) and Rep. Johnny Shaw (D – Bolivar) in the Tennessee General Assembly, and Toone Mayor Joe Jones and Hardeman County Mayor Jimmy Sain.