Ohio Star Forge to Undergo $20 Million Expansion

Ohio Star Forge officially announced Monday it is building a $20 million expansion at its facility in Champion Township.

Champion Township trustees and Trumbull County Commissioners agreed to a 10-year, 60 percent tax abatement for the project in December.

“The manpower’s here, the equipment’s here, the business is here in the United States,” said Billy Orbach, president and CEO of Ohio Star Forge.

The market, location and timing are all right for the expansion. The company will build a 33,000-square foot addition on the south end of its current plant off Mahoning Avenue.

“In which we’ll put a piece of equipment called a hatebur hot former, which is similar to the other four machines we have, it’d just be a much larger machine, larger parts, more steel. We’ll double our steel usage to approximately 36,000 tons a year,” Orbach said.

Orbach said they bought 5 additional acres from Warren Steel Holdings at the old Copperweld Steel site. The expansion also will create 30 new good-paying jobs at the plant.

“What primarily we’ll be hiring is entry level positions as the skilled employees move up the ranks,” Orbach said.

Ohio Steel Forge has been forging bearing components since 1989, with about 75 percent of its business in the automotive industry, but it’s also active in the energy industry, specifically forging ball valves for drilling and transportation of natural gas. Orbach said the facility will hit its 1 billionth part sometime late this year.

“I would expect that the new equipment will have about the same amount of product mix, with the other 25 percent being energy, as well as industrial, agricultural and off-highway,” said Carl Paglia, director of sales for Ohio Star Forge.

The township, county and Youngstown-Warren Regional Chamber all played a role in helping Ohio Star Forge continue to grow in Champion.

The company hopes to show off its new expansion in about six months.

Orbach wanted to unveil the expansion plans at the Champion Township trustees meeting because he said that’s where it all started for Ohio Star Forge in 1988. The company got a tax abatement from local leaders to set up shop at its current location.[lin_video src=http://eplayer.clipsyndicate.com/embed/iframe?aspect_ratio=3×2&auto_start=0&pf_id=9626&rel=3&show_title=0&va_id=4001963&volume=8&windows=1 service=syndicaster width=425 height=330 type=iframe]

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