Hantal Alabama Breaks Ground in Chambers County
CUSSETA — At a Monday morning groundbreaking ceremony, Jeung Woo Lee, chairman, Hankuk Metal Corporation, and Young Chul Kwon, chief executive officer, Hantal Alabama Corporation, each spoke of a milestone accomplishment being made with the commitment
CUSSETA — At a Monday morning groundbreaking ceremony, Jeung Woo Lee, chairman, Hankuk Metal Corporation, and Young Chul Kwon, chief executive officer, Hantal Alabama Corporation, each spoke of a milestone accomplishment being made with the commitment to build a $20 million plant in the Chambers County Industrial Park. Hantal has had a small plant in the Montgomery area for some time now but was looking to build a bigger plant somewhere between Hyundai Motors Manufacturing Alabama (HMMA) and Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia (KMMG). They settled on a site in Chambers County largely due to its proximity to potential customers such as KMMG, Mando, Mobis, Ajin and Great Lakes Metal Stamping. Hantal is in the business of e-coating and doing chemical processes needed in the production of automobile parts. The plant they will be building will be the sixth auto supplier to locate in the Cusseta park in the last eight years. It will be the second production facility located on the right side of the road that bisects the park. The Hantal Alabama plant will be located between Daedong Hi-Lex and I-85. Existing plants on the left side of the road include Ajin, Wooshin, Leehan and Great Lakes. Lee thanked Valerie Gray and Kimberly Carter of the Chambers County Development Authority, Chambers County Commissioners and state officials for theirhelp in selecting a site for their new production facility,which will employ an estimated 200 people."This is a wonderful day, not just for our companybut for me personally," Lee said. "We would like tobe the number one company in our business. Wehave plants in Korea, China, Europe and throughcareful planning, foresight and entrepreneurshipwill have this new plant in Chambers County."Lee said it had been a dream of Hantal companyofficials to have a plant like this one in the U.S. andthanked everyone who had a part in making thisdream a reality. Hantal, he said, was looking forwardto being a proud member of the Chambers Countybusiness community.Hantal Alabama CEO Young Chul Kwon thankedcustomers such as Kia, Hyundai, Mobis and Mandofor the confidence they had shown in the kind ofwork Hantal did. "This is such a wonderful day," hesaid. "It's a milestone day both for our company andChambers County. We are a customer-oriented company and are looking forward to doing business at this site."CCDA President Bobby Williams opened the ceremonyby welcoming a large number of Hantal officialsand employees, along with local and state representatives present. "This is a very special day," he said. "Our staff at the Development Authority worked on this project for almost one year. It's an exciting day when you close on a deal like this and we did it this morning (with a contract-signing ceremony at Chambers County Courthouse)."
Welcoming Hantal on behalf of the county commission, Vice-Chairman David Eastridge said he could remember driving down the road that cuts through the park when it was a dirt road and no
production plants had even been thought about. "I'm excited to see new buildings going up here and new jobs," he said. "As the leadership of Chambers County works with Hantal we have a larger international footprint here in our county." Eastridge thanked Bobby Williams and other members of the CCDA board for their work in getting companies like Hantal to come to Chambers County. In addition to Williams, the other board members include Bonnie Jarrell (secretary), Robert L. Johnson (treasurer), Terrell Bishop, Sam Bradford, Jim Cantrell, George Chambley, Greg Duffey, Chuck Goodwin, Lewis Lowe, Harold McGill and Barbara Steele. "Chairman Lee, we are excited you chose Chambers County to locate. Welcome," Eastridge said. State Sen. Gerald Dial welcomed Hantal on behalf of Gov. Robert Bentley and the state legislature." The governor asked me to convey his gratitude to you for coming to Alabama," Senator Dial said. "We welcome you and look forward to having a progressive company like Hantal coming to Chambers County. The 200 new jobs in this plant will help a lot of people. I want to thank Valerie (Gray) and her team and the Chambers County Commission for their part in this. I'm excited to have Hantal locating here." Dial said he had been to Korea on a number of occasions, the first time when he was serving in the military. "Every time I go there I see the same kind of values we hold in high regard here — hard work, honesty, love of family," he said. "We are extremely proud of what Kia and Hyundai mean to our geographical area." State Rep. DuWayne Bridges welcomed Chairman Lee and President Kwon on behalf of the Alabama House. "We are so excited you chose Chambers County," he said. "You will find that your decision was not an accident. You will be well served here. I am at your service and honored to have you here. I welcome you. God bless you for what you do, God bless Chambers County, God bless Alabama and God bless America." The morning program included both a shovel and a ribbon cutting ceremony. Chambers County commissioners and CCDA officials joined with Hantal officials in tossing some ceremonial sand on the site. They also joined with them in cutting a large red ribbon. Rather than using the big, bulky scissors that are often used in Chamber of Commerce ribbon cuttings, each person clipped a section of the ribbon with a small pair of scissors. While sand was tossed around in the ceremony, the moving of actual dirt on the site could begin as early as next week. That would be the site preparation phase. Construction and the moving in of equipment would follow that. Hantal officials are eager to get started in production and to have a piece of the action in what is a very busy automobile manufacturing and assembly corridor along I-85 between Troup County, Ga., and Montgomery, Ala.
Article written by Wayne Clark, Valley Times News