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Two auto suppliers proposing $180M in Miami Valley expansions

Two big auto suppliers are considering massive expansions that could mean a combined $180 million in investments and almost 650 jobs in the Dayton region.

Tenneco Automotive Operating Co. is investing $98.5 million in its Kettering engine facility, a bid expected to create 483 full-time jobs, and $15.8 million in new payroll. In addition, DMAX Ltd. is expanding its Moraine plant in an $82 million project that will create 150 jobs.

Both companies were approved for tax incentives from the Ohio Tax Credit Authority Monday. Tenneco’s tax credit is a 1.724 percent, nine-year tax credit worth $2.2 million if the company meets its job creation goals. DMAX got a 0.926 percent, six-year tax credit worth $242,000 if it meets its job creating goal.

These two investments in the local automotive industry come after the growth of companies like ADVICS in Lebanon, Navistar in Springfield and Fuyao Glass America in Moraine, which are also investing tens of millions locally.

Tenneco’s project means increasing its operational capacity in Kettering. The company has a 940,000-square-foot facility at 555 Woodman Drive where it has 529 employees, according to DBJ research. Part of a larger Lake Forest, Ill.-based auto group, the company designs and distributes shock absorbers, struts, ride control systems, mufflers, manifolds, full exhaust systems and engine mounts.

TCA information shows Ohio is competing with other Tenneco sites across the country for production, as the company is re-positioning its entire network of facilities. The project would retain $22.8 million in existing payroll here. A spokesperson said the entire investment would be in equipment as the company looks to modernize and potentially move some production here.

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