Chemical company’s expansion to result in 31 new jobs, 55 retained jobs
Baton Rouge, La. (July 21, 2022) — Bercen, a division of specialty ingredients manufacturer Vertellus, is announcing a $17.5 million expansion of its Denham Springs facility that will allow the company to retain 55 jobs and create eight new jobs with an average annual salary of $75,000 plus benefits. Louisiana Economic Development estimates the expansion will result in 23 indirect jobs, for a total of 31 new jobs in Louisiana’s Capital Region.
The Denham Springs facility produces specialized client solutions for paper packaging, fuel and lubricants, coatings and industrial applications.
“Time and again, companies are reinvesting in Louisiana manufacturing facilities, proving that our state has the workforce, business climate and transportation logistics for these critical supply-chain companies to thrive,” Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards said. “Bercen’s commitment to retain existing jobs and add good-paying jobs at its Denham Springs facility is a credit to the skilled advanced manufacturing workforce in Livingston Parish. We appreciate the company’s recognition of our state’s business advantages and look forward to the economic activity this investment will stimulate in the Capital Region.”
The company plans to begin expanding its facility in August, with completion expected by the end of the year. Hiring for the new positions has begun, and full commercial operations at the expanded facility are anticipated to start in Q1 of 2023.
“Louisiana’s support of manufacturing businesses like ours makes it a desirable place to invest,” Vertellus Vice President and General Manager Jim Elliott said. “The local leadership in Livingston Parish has given more than 60 years of continuous support to the site. The chemical manufacturing industry relies on Louisiana just as Bercen relies on the skilled workforce and local collegiate talent from the region.”
The company plans to make infrastructure and equipment upgrades to increase production capacity and upgrade the environmental management capabilities for its site.
“In the past two years, businesses have faced tough challenges and worker shortages, so it is great to learn that Bercen has plans to improve and expand its business capabilities as well as its workforce, adding 8 new jobs locally,” said Livingston Parish President Layton Ricks. “Bercen has met and exceeded its productivity estimates since locating to Livingston Parish, and I am excited that this trend is continuing.”
To secure the expansion at the Denham Springs facility, the State of Louisiana provided Bercen with a competitive incentive package that includes $250,000 from the Economic Development Award program. The Vertellus company is also expected to utilize the state’s Quality Jobs and Industrial Tax Exemption programs.
“We are pleased that Bercen has made the decision to expand their Livingston Parish operation with a significant capital investment and commitment to bring more high-paying jobs to the local community,” Livingston Economic Development Council President and CEO David Bennett said. “In a time when many businesses are struggling, it’s nice to celebrate a company that is willing and able to make the necessary investment to capture a new market opportunity.”
“Vertellus has found the talent, infrastructure and support from the state and local level to succeed,” said Adam Knapp, President and CEO of the Baton Rouge Area Chamber. “We join our partners in Livingston to celebrate this exciting growth in our Capital Region.”
Vertellus is a leading global manufacturer of specialty materials and key ingredients for fundamental consumer necessities. With a growing portfolio of solutions, Vertellus is dedicated to becoming the preferred global supplier of specialty ingredients and innovative materials that enhance quality of life, support health and wellness and enable customers to deliver value-added solutions. Vertellus technology can be found in personal care products, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, nutraceuticals, food and beverages, performance coatings, transportation additives and more. Headquartered in Indianapolis and founded in 1857, Vertellus has more than 1,300 employees across 15 international research and manufacturing facilities. Vertellus is a Responsible Care® company. For more information, visit vertellus.com.
Louisiana Economic Development is responsible for strengthening the state’s business environment and creating a more vibrant Louisiana economy. In 2021, LED attracted 64 new economic development projects representing over 18,100 new direct and indirect jobs, 9,700 retained jobs and more than $20.6 billion in new capital investment. LED cultivates jobs and economic opportunity for the people of Louisiana, and promotes business opportunity for employers of all sizes. For more information, visit OpportunityLouisiana.com.
About the Baton Rouge Area Chamber
The Baton Rouge Area Chamber (BRAC) is an aggressively ambitious regional economic development organization with a bias for action. BRAC seeks to push Baton Rouge beyond the status quo, unleash its potential, and support a vibrant business community that believes the finish line does not exist. BRAC seeks to accelerate economic opportunity in the Baton Rouge Area, for everyone, through BRING IT! Baton Rouge, its five-year, regional strategic plan. Learn more about BRAC at brac.org.