Automotive supplier to expand 4 NC plants

— A company that designs and builds automotive drive trains plans to expand four North Carolina plants, adding 302 jobs and investing at least $179 million over the next five years, officials said Tuesday.

GKN Driveline will add 159 people total at its facilities in Sanford, Mebane and Timberlake and 143 over four years at its Maiden plant.

“North Carolina is an important part of our strategy, with strategically located facilities and an outstanding workforce. GKN Driveline is excited about our expansion and its positive impact on the state and local communities,” Chief Executive Phil Swash said in a statement.

U.K.-based GKN opened its first facility in North Carolina in 1978, and its various locations in the state currently employ more than 2,700.

The expansions in Alamance, Lee and Person counties qualified the company for a Job Development Investment Grant that could total up to $1.54 million in rebated employee withholding taxes over 12 years. The Catawba County expansion qualifies for a JDIG of up to $1.59 million over 12 years. In both cases, GKN must meet annual job and investment targets to receive the rebates.

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