Briggs & Stratton celebrates expansion with Gov. Deal

Briggs & Stratton celebrates expansion with Gov. Deal
(Source: WTOC

STATESBORO, GA (WTOC) - One of the biggest small-engine plants in America will soon rev up with even more work.

Briggs & Stratton celebrated Thursday, with Georgia's governor, the move to bring jobs back to America and to Statesboro. The new engine line means not just 100 jobs in Statesboro, but also bringing those jobs back to the U.S. from overseas.

Governor Nathan Deal helped celebrate the move by Briggs and Stratton to move part of their operation back to the U.S. Bringing the Vanguard engine line back to America means more production and more jobs.

"If states do it the right way, and we think we do it right, companies will come back," Gov. Deal said.

Company leaders say things like tax credits and worker training through nearby Ogeechee Tech helped sway their decision to come here.

"A lot of people said that you can't manufacture anymore in the U.S. The fact is, 85 percent of what we do is in the U.S., and our Statesboro plant is a really important part of that," said Todd Teske, CEO, Briggs & Stratton.

They'll divide the Vanguard production between plants in Statesboro and Auburn, AL. Governor Deal says this addition reinforces Georgia's efforts to recruit industrial expansion.

"Companies go where they can produce their product in satisfactory fashion, in an economical way, so they can be competitive in the marketplace where they sell. We think we furnish all of those."

Company leaders say it only makes sense if they design the engines in the U.S. and sell them to companies in the U.S. to make them here instead of someplace else.

They anticipate start-up of the new production fall. They'll hold a job fair for it on July 17.

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