KNOXVILLE (WATE) — Lifetime Products, which makes everything from plastic tables and chairs to basketball hoops, is opening their new manufacturing facility in Knox County.
Governor Bill Haslam, Knox County Mayor Tim Burchett and Tennessee Valley Authority President and CEO Bill Johnson were among those in attendance for the ribbon cutting ceremony on Thursday.
The company’s products will be manufactured and distributed at the new 720,000 square foot plant. It is now the largest factory in Knox County.
Customer demand continues to grow, so Lifetime Products says it needed to expand in Tennessee. The company wanted an additional facility to make it easier to serve the East Coast.
Richard Hendrickson, President and CEO of Lifetime Products said, “The ability to respond and make the product closer to the end user allows us to meet those requirements.”
The new location means an economic boost for our community.
Governor Bill Haslam adds, “You have all the supplies they build and then you have employees who are going to be working, creating income and generating revenue for businesses around. So an investment like this really can’t be underestimated.”
According to the Knoxville Chamber, the the new facility represents a total direct and indirect economic impact of $184 million and 1,260 direct and indirect new jobs. Most of the jobs will be in production or equipment maintenance.
Hendrickson said, “Now we get to start finding people with the right talents and abilities and start hiring people and expanding manufacturing in the United States of America.”
Products made in the Tennessee factory will be sold throughout the U.S. and in more than 80 countries.
Lifetime Products started in 1986 in Utah. They invented the first basketball hoop homeowners can raise and lower quickly. The company now sells picnic tables, folding tables and chairs, sheds and even kayaks. The company has roughly 1,500 employees over the globe.