Governor Bobby Jindal and MECO Inc. President George Gsell announced the company will expand by building a new facility in Mandeville, creating 127 new direct jobs by 2018. The move will retain 81 existing jobs and result in 168 new indirect jobs. MECO, will spend $11 million developing the 80,000-square-foot facility in the Alamosa Business Park and plans to finish by the end of 2013.
MECO (founded as Mechanical Equipment Company Inc.) is an international company that develops solutions for the treatment and desalination of water for customers in the pharmaceutical, marine oil and gas, and defense industries. Throughout the years, they have earned several patents in the area of water purification such as the patent of the vapor compression process for the desalination of sea water. Today, MECO provides the broadest range of water purification technologies of any company.
Gov. Jindal said, “MECO’s Louisiana operations may have been disrupted by the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina, but the company remained true to its roots by maintaining a presence in the state. The company could have easily expanded in Texas instead of Louisiana, but because of their ties to Louisiana, our strong business climate, and world class workforce, MECO decided to invest and expand right here at home.”
“This new facility is an opportunity to substantially increase our production capacity and further improve efficiencies,” Gsell said. “LED and St. Tammany Parish officials have been instrumental in not only moving this project forward, but in positioning Louisiana at the forefront of one of our most pressing environmental issues – maintaining a supply of fresh water.”
Discussions about the possible expansion began in 2010 when the state’s Business Expansion and Retention group along with the St. Tammany Parish Economic Development Foundation got together. LED offered MECO a performance-based, forgivable five-year loan of $500,000 through the state’s Economic Development Loan Program. The company was additionally eligible for a relocation grant up to $450,000. MECO will also receive assistance from LED FastStart™, a workforce development company.
“This is a great day for St. Tammany Parish,” said Parish President Pat Brister. “MECO has chosen not only to stay in St. Tammany, keeping 81 people employed, but is going to add new employees and new jobs. The residents of St. Tammany Parish are ready, willing and able to work with MECO and appreciate the confidence the company has shown in our parish.”