Manner Polymers, a leader in manufacturing polymer compounds, recently announced it will invest $54 million in a new state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Mt. Vernon, Illinois. The company was drawn by the state’s central location and access to rail, its skilled workforce, and commitment to sustainability.
The new facility in Mt. Vernon is expected to create 60 new jobs in Southern Illinois. The 80,000-square-foot-plant will be powered entirely by a 15-acre solar field located on site, representing a major industry landmark for sustainability, a first-of-its kind solar-powered PVC compounding plant running on clean energy generated on premises.
Manner Polymers is one of the nation’s largest flexible PVC compounders, serving markets across a broad range of industries. The new Illinois facility is expected to open in fall 2025, increasing the company’s production capacity by 100 million pounds and strengthening the supply chain for an entire ecosystem of industries.
The Texas-based company makes components used in a multitude of industries and products, including electric vehicles. The company was the second in Illinois to receive incentives under the state’s Reimaging Energy and Vehicles (REV) Illinois act, which offers tax credits to encourage manufacturers to invest in EVs and renewable energy.
A group of Illinois organizations including state and local economic development offices collaborated to showcase the state’s tremendous assets and make the case for Illinois. Ultimately, Manner Polymers chose the Mt. Vernon site after considering locations in Arkansas, Missouri, Indiana, Kentucky and Tennessee.
Matt Love, Manner Polymers’ Controller, spoke with us about why the company chose Illinois for this state-of-the-art facility.
Questions and Answers:
What does this new investment mean for Manner Polymers?
Our new manufacturing facility in Mount Vernon, Illinois marks an exciting new step in the growth of Manner Polymers. This investment is a very exciting step for our organization to expand our mission of providing the highest levels of product consistency coupled with low cost and unparalleled supply reliability to a larger market of customers.
What was behind the decision to include a solar farm as part of the new facility?
Our objective is to build the lowest cost, highest quality, most environmentally sustainable flexible PVC compounding plant in the world. The addition of the solar farm helps Manner Polymers to obtain industry-leading capabilities coupled with a clean energy footprint.
What attracted Manner Polymers to Illinois?
Illinois stood out amongst all the states we looked at with their aggressive and organized approach to attracting businesses. The prompt responses to our inquiries as well as creative solutions to issues that arose helped lead to our final decision to select Mount Vernon for our new plant.
How did Illinois’ location impact your decision?
The location of Southern Illinois greatly impacted our decision. Not only is Mount Vernon at the intersection of two major interstate highways but it also has several major rail line intersections. These facts, coupled with the location relative to current and prospective customers, made it a logical choice for Manner Polymers.
What impact did Illinois’ skilled workforce have on your decision?
In our first site visit to Mount Vernon, the Jefferson County Economic Development Corporation as well as Man-Tra-Con Corporation showed us how skilled the Illinois workforce is. The plentiful hard-working workforce we would benefit from was apparent from our first visit.
What advice do you have for other manufacturers looking to set up in a new location?
Our advice is to not be afraid to go to your state and local resources with your issues. Illinois differentiated itself with their creativity in solving several issues. Their hard work make Illinois the clear choice for our new manufacturing facility.
What has Illinois done well that positions it to lead in advanced manufacturing?
The aggressive incentives from Illinois coupled with their programs toward supplying a skilled workforce positions the state to be an ideal location for advanced manufacturing. These aspects along with its location in the heart of the country make Illinois the obvious choice for any advanced manufacturing company.
How was Intersect Illinois helpful in the site selection process?
Intersect Illinois was our very first contact in the state of Illinois. They helped us analyze options and connected us with the exact people that could help solve all our issues along the way. Intersect Illinois is one of the primary reasons we wound up choosing Mount Vernon for our second manufacturing plant.