Northwire expands into Carson City

Jim Grant / Nevada Appeal

Jim Grant / Nevada Appeal

A Wisconsin company that just opened an engineering sales office in Carson City has big plans for the region.

Northwire Inc., an Osceola, Wis., company that makes sophisticated custom wire and cable products, expects to open a factory that will employ about 50 people within the next couple of years.

"We'll be able to create some really good jobs," says Michael Conger, the president of Northwire Inc. He has relocated to Carson City to oversee development of the new operation.

His first order of business: Recruiting a cadre of about a half-dozen sales engineers to begin calling on potential customers in industries ranging from medical supplier to aerospace manufacturers to government agencies.

As the sales engineering group lands new orders from customers in Nevada and California, Northwire will begin moving forward on its plans for a manufacturing facility in Carson City to serve those new customers.

The company, which operates at Santa Teresa, N.M., in addition to its Wisconsin headquarters, has been testing the markets in Nevada and California for the past couple of years.

The results, Conger said, were solid contributors to growth that landed Northwire Inc. and its $50 million in annual sales on the Inc. magazine list of the 5,000 fastest-growing private companies in the nation.

Northwire works with its customers to create specialized wire and cable products that are used in applications such as electric vehicles, factory automation and wind turbines.

It recently won contracts, for instance, to provide cabling for the new Boeing KC-46 tanker aircraft under development for the Air Force.

The company, Conger says, prides itself on fast turnarounds - as quickly as five days to custom-design, manufacture and deliver some products.

Competitors can take months for the same work, he says.

The manufacturing operation that Northwire plans in Carson City will help it meet those aggressive manufacturing and delivery promises to its West Coast customers.

While the sales engineering office in Carson City ramps up, Conger says manufacturing of the orders its staff lands will be handled at the company's already-busy Wisconsin and New Mexico facilities.

The company, which has been working with Bruce Robertson and Jack Brower of the Carson City office of Sperry Van Ness, expects to locate in a 50,000 to 120,000-square-foot manufacturing facility.

The Northern Nevada Development Authority also has assisted the company with its plans in Carson City.

Northwire's timetable calls for the manufacturing facility to be in operation within a couple of years.

But a decision must be made more quickly because orders for the plant's capital equipment typically require lead times of eight to 12 months.

The company was founded in 1972. Its current owner and chief executive officer, Katina Kravik, represents the third generation of family owners.


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