MPW Industrial Services moving to Mingo

MPW EXPANDING — MPW Industrial Services is expanding its operations to the former Choice Brands building in Mingo Junction. - Mark Law

MINGO JUNCTION — With help from the state of Ohio, MPW Industrial Services is expanding its local industrial cleaning operation with a move from the Fernwood Road Industrial Park to the former Choice Brands of Ohio site.

Mike Zimmerman, marketing director for MPW Industrial Services, said the move allows the company to maintain a presence it established in the area more than 30 years ago. Through an Ohio Job Creation Tax Credit approved in January by the state, MPW plans to add 25 new positions to the 125 current employees who work in the area from the Fernwood Road site. All told, Gov. John Kasich’s office said the firm plans to add $738,941 in additional payroll and retain $5.7 million in existing payroll with the expansion. The job creation credit is 1.47 percent for five years.

“We have a very successful long-term presence in that area and felt, if it was at all possible, that we wanted to stay in the area,” Zimmerman commented. “We thought the Jobs Ohio economic grant program and the Ohio Job Creation Tax made it a wonderful choice for us to continue our presence in that market.”

The total investment in preparing one of the two buildings on the former Choice Brands beverage distributorship site for MPW is about $1.2 million, he said. The firm intends to renovate offices, add new roll-up doors, upgrade the dispatching and training areas and use the larger space the building makes available for MPW to upgrade its local maintenance shops and storage facilities. MPW hopes to be moved to the site by early April.

The firm is outgrowing its current location, said Evan Scurti, executive director of the Jefferson County Port Authority.

Scurti said the authority had been in talks with MPW for months about its expansion prospects in the area when the Choice Brands operation closed toward the end of 2016.

“The situation shows the importance of what we have been trying to preach all along,” Scurti said. “We need ready-to-go real estate that is move-in ready. They have a nice, modern building there. In our situation, we are on a border with another state and they could have easily gone to West Virginia or Pennsylvania. It is nice to be able to compete with them, not only for tax incentives but for the quality of the real estate, which was the game changer in being able to keep them here.”

MPW crews working out of the Jefferson County location cover a roughly 125-mile radius, Zimmerman said. Job recruiting already has begun to fill the additional positions.

Scurti credited the assistance of the state, through Ed Looman of the Appalachian Partnership for Economic Growth, for making the programs work for the project.

Looman said, “We are certainly happy to be able to keep those jobs in Jefferson County and it’s great that the company is going to add some jobs. It is just one of those situations that worked out really well for everyone involved. The company indicated they were looking for additional space and as they looked at continuing to grow this operation here, it was about the time the buildings came on the market.”

Looman said MPW showed immediate interest in the southernmost structure, about 40,000 square feet of space, on the Choice Brands site. The other building remains on the market, though Looman said there has been interest from some firms in that building.

MPW Industrial Services, based in Hebron, Ohio, offers a variety of industrial cleaning, water purification, facility management, environmental management and container management services across North America. The Industrial Cleaning Division works with steel, power generation, pulp and paper, manufacturing, automotive and the energy sector.