German chemical and consumer goods company Henkel AG & Co., KGaA, plans to add nearly 200 jobs in the Greater Rochester area with a $17.3 million investment in its Geneva manufacturing facility. The company, known for its beauty care brands like Dial soap, Schwarzkopf, Alterna, Kenra, Pravana, Sexy Hair, Joico and Zotos hair products, will invest a total of $23 million in its North American manufacturing facilities.
The funds will provide new equipment and a series of improvements that will support additional production of Dial liquid hand soap and hand sanitizers at its Geneva, N.Y., and West Hazleton, Pa., sites.
“We are thrilled to announce a supply expansion of essential products in North America,” said Doug Parkinson, vice president of operations at Henkel’s Geneva facility. “It’s not only a win-win for our business, it will support our local job and economic growth. Investing in Dial will provide consumers and businesses with much-needed home and personal hygiene products.”
To support new lines, which will contribute some 45 percent to 55 percent of total production at the Geneva facility, the company plans to create 180 new jobs at the plant. The company’s facility in Geneva, acquired by Henkel in 2018, also will be re-branded from Zotos Professional to Henkel to reflect the expansion of its operations beyond professional hair care products to supply essential products like antibacterial soap and hand sanitizers.
“There are now 180 new reasons to cheer every time we wash our hands thanks to the expansion of Henkel’s manufacturing facility in Geneva,” said U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer in a statement. “This will lather up a major economic boost in the heart of New York’s Finger Lakes region by harnessing our skilled workforce to manufacture the sanitizers and soaps needed in our homes and workplaces during the pandemic, all while investing over $17 million to create 180 new jobs. I applaud Henkel for doubling down on its Geneva workforce and committing to grow this facility now and into the future.”
Some aspects of the new technology will be installed in October and be operational in November 2020, while the remainder will be up and running by June 2021.
“This new investment builds our long history of commitment to the Geneva community and sustainability efforts,” Parkinson noted.
In 2011, the company invested $6 million to build two 1.6MW wind turbines that now provide up to 20 percent of total site consumption equivalency, and on a windy day, the turbines can fuel the entire plant, he said.
“Additionally, the facility is investing $5 million in a wastewater treatment system that will ensure a clean effluent stream, ultimately enabling reusable water as a pillar of our community sustainable strategy,” Parkinson added. “With this new Henkel investment and the addition of the powerhouse Dial brand, our modern operations support the addition of 180 highly-skilled and talented employees that we are attracting from our local community to help further strengthen the Finger Lakes economy. We are extremely proud to be increasing our essential manufacturing of Dial soap and sanitizer products, during this challenging time.”
In North America, Henkel operates across its three business units: Adhesive Technologies, Beauty Care and Laundry & Home Care. With sales of roughly $6 billion in 2019, North America accounts for 26 percent of the company’s global sales. Henkel employs some 9,000 people across the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico.