Leadership from WKW joined employees and local leaders to celebrate 10 years at their Pell City location and they celebrated with planting a magnolia tree and recognizing employees that have been with the company since its groundbreaking 10 years ago.
WKW Erbsloeh North America, LLC (WENA) manufactures aluminum trim and functional components as well as roof railing systems in St. Clair County. It is also the North American headquarters for WKW Automotive from Germany, and several members of headquarters in Germany attended the tree-planting ceremony.
Chairman of Supervisory Board for Erbsloeh AG Peter Kruft said, “When we had the idea of coming to North America…we found Pell City should be the place to build this facility.”
Pell City Mayor Bill Pruitt, Pell City City Councilmember Jay Jenkins, St. Clair County Commissioner Chairman Paul Manning along with Jason Roberts and Don Smith of the St. Clair County Economic Development Council which assisted in the location of the facility in Pell City were on hand to celebrate WKW’s 10th anniversary.
“(WKW) have been long-term great community partners,” Pell City Mayor Bill Pruitt said. “We are proud of the continued investment you have in the community.”
At the facility in Pell City, more than 450 dedicated team members mechanically process aluminum profiles, which are then polished and chemically treated. One of those team members is Adam Thomas, who began his career with WKW before the facility was built. They began in an office space at Jefferson State Community College-St. Clair campus and have now expanded to a more than 100,000 square foot facility.
“I have seen it grow so much over the years,” Thomas said. He has also grown with the company and is now a quality systems manager.
WKW also received the Alabama Automotive Manufacturers Association (AMAA) Supplier of the Year award in the large manufacturer category for companies with more than 200 employees. The awards are the AAMA’s recognition for automotive industry supply chain partners who demonstrate distinguished performance in quality, affordability, and reliability.
WKW Erbsloeh North America, LLC (WENA) started in 2008. Their website states, “With much tenacity, change, teamwork, leadership, and understanding the German-American cultural differences, it is enabling WENA to create an impressive footprint in the automotive supply industry with its customers like Mercedes, BMW, GM, and Volkswagen."
WENA also supports workforce development through apprenticeship programs with Jefferson State Community College and tuition reimbursement for the associates. WENA supports the community, and makes significant economic impact to Pell City and St. Clair County. WENA’s goal is to be “the preferred employer in Pell City”.
“We have had a challenging time over the past 10 years,” said Guido Grandi, CEO WKW Group. “Our team is facing a better future and we are committed to staying and growing.”
For more information about WENA and WKW, visit www.wkw.de/en/subsidiaries/north-america/wkw-erbsloeh-north-ame