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GOVERNOR’S DETROIT MISSION RESULTS IN INVESTMENT
-Lear Corporation commits to reinvest in the Commonwealth, create 200 new jobs-
RICHMOND - Virginia Governor Mark R. Warner today announced a $60 million reinvestment by Lear Corporation (NYSE:LEA) in four existing Virginia manufacturing facilities that translates into 200 new jobs in the Commonwealth. Governor Warner met with Lear executives during his first domestic economic development mission to the Detroit area in January.
Lear’s Virginia plants are located in Winchester, Shenandoah County, Alleghany County, and Russell County. In 2002, these Virginia plants accounted for a total of $330 million in revenues and employed approximately 2,800 Virginians represented by the UAW and UNITE labor unions. In the past year alone, total sales at Lear’s Virginia operations have grown by $45 million, reflecting the reallocation of production as well as new contracts received from automakers such as Ford, General Motors and Toyota.
“I am pleased I could take part in this meeting that reinforces Lear’s commitment to the Commonwealth of Virginia,” said Governor Warner. “This company remains a strong corporate citizen in the state and employs many hardworking Virginians. It is gratifying to hear first hand from senior management of Lear’s satisfaction with its Virginia operations.”
“Our Interior Systems Division continues to be a strategic focus for Lear Corporation,” said Lear Corporation Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, David Wajsgras. “We are very pleased with the performance of our operations in Virginia, and we appreciate the ongoing support from the Commonwealth.”
Governor Warner was accompanied on the Michigan mission by Virginia Secretary of Commerce and Trade Michael J. Schewel and representatives from the Virginia Economic Development Partnership. To support Lear Corporation’s ongoing investment, the Virginia Department of Business Assistance is providing workforce training and retraining assistance for more than 1,200 existing Lear jobs.
Virginia’s automotive and automotive parts manufacturing facilities employ more than 25,000 Virginians. There have been 117 new facilities or expansions of existing Virginia facilities in the automotive industry announced during the past 10 years. Since 1992, Virginia has announced $2.1 billion of automotive investments creating more than 10,300 jobs.
Lear Corporation, a Fortune 500 company headquartered in Southfield, Mich., USA, focuses on integrating complete automotive interiors, including seat systems, interior trim and electrical systems. With annual net sales of $14.4 billion in 2002, Lear is the world's largest automotive interior systems supplier. The company’s world-class products are designed, engineered and manufactured by 115,000 employees in more than 300 facilities located in 33 countries. Additional information about Lear and its products is available on the Internet at www.lear.com.
Governor Warner has planned another domestic trade mission to New York April 7-9. He is also scheduled to lead a trade mission to Europe May 18-25.