The Livingston Parish News

LIVINGSTON — The official opening of EPIC Piping will add spark to the comeback of Livingston Parish and give a boost to the entire Capitol Region, Governor John Bel Edwards said Friday.

Edwards led a group of officials who hailed a new era for the parish at the opening of the $45.3 million complex on La. 63 near the Interstate 12 interchange.

The project will create 560 new direct jobs with an average annual salary of $56,600 plus benefits. Louisiana Economic Development estimates the project will result in an additional 732 new indirect jobs, for a total of more than 1,000 new jobs in the Capital Region and surrounding parishes.

EPIC’s investment of $45.3 million in the project represents a strong vote of confidence in the Louisiana economy, Edwards said.

“Epic Piping is up and running, and this is an important economic development success story for Livingston Parish and the state,” he said. “This is a cutting-edge company that is bringing hundreds of jobs to the Capital Region.”

Livingston Parish President Layton Ricks still looked amazed at the magnitude of the facility after the ceremony ended.

“This facility totally blows my mind,” he said. “It’s everything they told me it would be, and I’m so thankful we have this here.

“You can tell it’s a close-knit atmosphere, and in a climate control building, which is a great thing when you work in south Louisiana,” Ricks said. “This is a big investment for Livingston Parish.

The completion of the facility and headquarters could not come at a better time, the Parish President said.

“This is by far the largest investment in the history of Livingston Parish and we are blessed that Epic chose our parish to expand its business,” he told the crowd. “You needed this and we needed this.”

The manufacturing plan will operate in conjunction with affiliated manufacturing locations in San Marcos, Texas, and the United Arab Emirates.

EPIC is creating what the company forecasts will become the global leader in industrial pipe fabrication, EPIC Piping Chief Operating Officer Remi Bonnecase said.

“We are pleased to unveil our state-of-the-art facility today in Livingston Parish, continuing EPIC’s rapid growth across the world,” he said. “The opening of this facility demonstrates our commitment to providing quality jobs across Louisiana.

“I am proud to announce that Epic has already hired more than 200 employees in Louisiana and we look forward to adding new members to our talented team,” Bonnecaze said.

To secure the project, the State of Louisiana offered Epic a comprehensive incentive package that includes: a performance-based $1.8 million Economic Development Award Program grant to offset site infrastructure costs; and the comprehensive solutions of LED FastStart®, ranked the nation’s No. 1 state workforce development program. The company also is utilizing the state’s Quality Jobs and Industrial Tax Exemption programs.

“We are honored to welcome a world-renowned pipe fabrication company like Epic Piping to Livingston Parish,” Livingston Parish President Layton Ricks said. “The completion and opening of its state-of-the-art facility and corporate headquarters couldn’t come at a better time. This is by far the largest investment in the history of Livingston Parish and we are blessed that Epic chose our parish to expand its business.”

The opening of the plant comes at the end of the reign for Derral Jones, mayor of the Town of Livingston.

He said the facility is a perfect fit for the area.

“Our strategic location along the I-12 corridor provides an excellent opportunity for large manufacturers and distribution facilities to locate, as Epic has clearly demonstrated,” Jones said. “The grand opening of Epic Piping is a great day for the town of Livingston and for Livingston Parish as a whole.”

In addition to advanced instrumentation, Epic Piping is providing an all-air-conditioned facility throughout the manufacturing space. Cloud-based software systems also are driving documentation of all fabrication, administrative and distribution steps, leading to an efficient, paperless manufacturing process.

The company completed the building structure this summer, adding production equipment in recent months and is now entering full commercial production, with capacity for up to 7,000 spools per month.

“The LEDC is pleased to welcome Epic Piping into the Livingston Parish family with the grand opening of its state-of-the-art manufacturing facility and corporate headquarters,” said President and CEO David Bennett of the Livingston Economic Development Council. “Not only has Epic constructed a wonderful facility, but it also is bringing hundreds of high-paying, quality jobs for local residents that will benefit our parish for many years to come.”

“Epic’s investment in Livingston Parish, especially in the context of the summer’s flooding, is hugely important for the vitality of the region,” said President and CEO Adam Knapp of the Baton Rouge Area Chamber. “We congratulate them on their grand opening today, and look forward to their continued positive impact on the regional economy.”

Epic’s global fabrication capacity currently exceeds 1 million square feet, with a total production capacity of over 20,000 spools per month at multiple facilities. The company’s fabrication capabilities include: carbon steel, chrome-moly, stainless steels, duplex steels, nickel-based alloys and jacketed piping.