German auto supplier plans Georgia factory, 200 jobs

A German steel company and supplier to BMW and other auto manufacturers plans to open a factory in Hart County in northeast Georgia in a move that is expected to create about 200 jobs.

Linde + Wiemann’s $35 million project will also include a national sales office and product distribution, according to a Tuesday news release. The company makes engineered steel systems, instrument panel assemblies and parts for doors and other vehicle components.

Georgia has made automotive companies and suppliers one of its recruiting priorities, and the state has deep ties to Germany. Last year, German automotive supplier Geiger Automotive announced a plant in Suwanee, and luxury automaker Mercedes-Benz moved its US headquarters to metro Atlanta.

In 2014, German parts company Haring announced a plant making fuel injector parts in Hart County, which is expected to create 800 jobs through 2025.

The Linde + Wiemann facility will provide materials to BMW in South Carolina and the Mercedes-Benz factory in Alabama.

“Linde + Wiemann’s decision to locate their U.S.-based operation in Hart County sends a strong message about Georgia’s business-friendly climate,” Deal said in the release. “This announcement indicates Northeast Georgia as a hub for the manufacturing of products that are vital to major automotive industry leaders worldwide.”

The privately-held firm, plans to open its facility on 29 acres in the Gateway II Industrial Park near Lake Hartwell along the Georgia-South Carolina border, the release said.

Linde + Wiemann CEO Urlich Schoof said in the release the company picked Georgia for its location and skilled workforce.

This appears to be the first in a string of jobs expansions the state plans to announce in January. Earlier Tuesday, Deal made jobs and investment a consistent theme of his speech to the Georgia Chamber of Commerce’s Eggs & Issues breakfast.

He told chamber leaders and politicians at the annual meeting at the start of the state's legislative session that the state expects to announce more than 3,100 new jobs coming to the state in January.