Collaboration brought can manufacturer to TRIC

Collaboration between the Governor’s Office on Economic Development, the Economic Development Authority of Western Nevada and commercial brokerage NAI Alliance was instrumental in Ardagh Group’s decision to open a can manufacturing facility in Northern Nevada.

Ardagh Group, a global glass and metals packaging firm headquartered at Luxembourg, last week announced its expansion into northern Nevada. Ardagh is expected to employ as many as 140 people over the next five years. The company makes packaging products for many well-known brands, including Coca Cola, Bacardi, Bumble Bee Tuna and ConAgra Foods.

Ardagh purchased a 330,000-square-foot former plastics-manufacturing facility on 68 acres at Waltham Way in Tahoe Reno Industrial Center from Royal Sierra Extrusions. Royal Sierra Extrusions vacated the facility several years ago.

Ardagh will use the facility to manufacture cans, the majority of which will be shipped to central California to be filled with foods products, said Dave Simonsen, industrial broker with NAI Alliance. Simonsen represented Ardagh in its negotiations with Royal Sierra Extrusions. The 330,000-square-foot building is expandable, and Simonsen says Ardagh plans to boost its manufacturing capabilities in Northern Nevada over time.

Ardagh has more than 100 facilities across the globe, including operations in Bloomsburg, Pa., Weirton, W.Va., Conklin, N.Y., and Terminal Island in California. It also has a metal-packing facility in Carnegie, Pa.

EDAWN, NAI Alliance and the Governor’s Office on Economic Development spent many long days working together to bring Ardagh to northern Nevada. Ardagh inspected 37 sites in two states, as well as four different states for its East Coast operations.

Company executives say that the commitment shown by Northern Nevada business leaders in helping the company through the permitting and application process convinced it to expand to northern Nevada.

Simonsen said Ardagh weighed its options carefully. On the one hand, if it purchased a can-making facility in California it would be in close proximity to its customers and could significantly reduce transportation costs. However, Nevada was more attractive in terms of cost of real estate, labor, political climate and economic incentives.

“We worked in conjunction with the Governor’s Office on Economic Development, and I commend Steve Hill (GOED’s executive director) and Gov. Sandoval in their efforts to attract this company,” NAI Alliance’s Simonsen said. “Of the six states in which Ardagh was looking, they were able to meet with five governors. The one that didn’t meet with them was Gov. Jerry Brown of California, which was a bad signal regarding California’s interest in attracting quality businesses.

“Of the five governors that Ardagh met with, they related to me that they felt most comfortable with Gov. Sandoval, which was a big factor in their selection of Northern Nevada.”

Stan Thomas, executive vice president of marketing and competitive expansion for EDAWN, says that of the more than 200 companies he’s helped bring to the region, landing Ardagh Group is among the deals of which he’s most proud.

“It became a partnership on both sides, working together,” Thomas said. “That was really hard but really rewarding. We got the governor and a lot of people involved in that deal.”

Michael Borne will head Ardagh’s operations in the area.


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