Auto supplier to add 120 jobs in Roxboro

Posted February 21, 2011 2:38 p.m. EST

— Eaton Corp. will add 120 jobs over the next four years at its Person County automotive components plant, officials said Monday.

The company plans to invest $23.3 million in the plant to build valve-train components that reduce emissions and help improve vehicle performance, fuel economy and safety.

"This is an exciting day for us because we are always looking for opportunities to grow and add jobs with new technologies,” Jake Hooks, president of Eaton Automotive North America, said in a statement. “The state’s support of this project is an excellent example of how government and industry can collaborate toward making greener, cleaner and more fuel-efficient vehicles.”

The average annual wage for the new jobs will be $35,875, plus benefits. Person County's average wage is $32,136.

Eaton qualified for a $100,000 grant from the One North Carolina Fund, which provides cash grants to attract business projects to the state. No money is paid upfront, and companies must meet job and investment targets to obtain the funds.

The state Economic Investment Committee also voted Monday to award a Job Development Investment Grant to Eaton. Under the terms of the JDIG, the company is eligible to receive up to 60 percent of the state withholding taxes paid on the new jobs. If Eaton meets annual performance targets for 10 years, it could receive up to $958,000 under the grant.

Eaton has operated the Roxboro plant since 1965. Over the years, it has manufactured a variety of components for the automotive industry, including tire valves and various engine components.

The company already employs 3,400 people in 12 locations in North Carolina.