Steffes Corp. grows into Grand ForksGRAND FORKS — The Grand Forks Growth Fund Committee recommended approval of a funding request at its meeting Tuesday to support an expansion that will create up to 50 skilled jobs in the Grand Forks region. The Jobs Development Authority is expected to take final action on the request at its May 7 meeting.
GRAND FORKS — The Grand Forks Growth Fund Committee recommended approval of a funding request at its meeting Tuesday to support an expansion that will create up to 50 skilled jobs in the Grand Forks region. The Jobs Development Authority is expected to take final action on the request at its May 7 meeting.
Dickinson-based Steffes Corp. is expanding its manufacturing operation to Grand Forks to meet increased demand for its products in the western North Dakota Oil Patch.
The Grand Forks Region Economic Development Corp. has been working with Steffes Corporation in recent months to assist with its expansion needs. The EDC board endorsed the project and the funding request to the Growth Fund Committee.
Steffes manufactures barrel oil tanks used in the Bakken and offers its oil industry customers additional metal products for oil sites including steel berms, walkways and stairs, engineered flares, and heater treaters. It also manufactures and sells residential and commercial electric thermal storage smart-grid heating systems.
This is the second company in recent weeks to receive support to expand into the region to meet growing demands in the Bakken for its products and services. Diverse Energy Systems in Grafton received loan support earlier this month.
“The expansion allows Steffes to meet its growth plans,” said Steffes Corporation CEO Paul Steffes. “We have been growing rapidly in the last two years and have been challenged with finding enough employees. The Grand Forks community has a larger employment market than western North Dakota and we look forward to being part of their community. We were happy to find an existing steel fabrication facility, ready to start production in North Dakota.”
Steffes purchased the former Pribbs Steel building on Highway 2 to locate its expanded operation. Through the Grand Forks Growth Fund, Steffes will receive a $74,854 loan, which will leverage a $139,014 PACE grant from the Bank of North Dakota to assist with financing the expansion.
“Grand Forks is an excellent community for to expand to,” said President Joe Rothschiller. “We are a manufacturing company that uses a lot of engineering talent and having a plant closer to our engineering schools in the eastern part of North Dakota is a plus.”
EDC President & CEO Klaus Thiessen said, “The Bakken boom isn’t that far removed from Grand Forks. Expansions like this illustrate the benefits of being a small, cohesive state. Our region has many positive attributes to offer companies that need to expand in order to meet growing demand. Border to border, anytime a business expands in the state, we all win.
“Steffes’s expansion is an exciting opportunity for Grand Forks and the Grand Forks Region EDC as we continue to work to ensure we have a diversified economic base and ample opportunities for our skilled and talented workforce.”
Division Manager Rodger Pearson will manage the Steffes Grand Forks plant. They will hire 15 welders, machine operators, painters and other support staff by year-end with plans to expand to more than 50 within three years.