Amid a rebounding housing market, window-and-door maker Andersen Corp. will spend $45 million to expand its North Branch and Cottage Grove factories.
The company announced the news Monday, the same day the company opened a new factory in its headquarters town of Bayport, Minn. The new Bayport plant will have 100 workers who will build Andersen 100 Series products, the company's lower-price line of windows and doors.
Separately, Andersen officials announced a second major expansion at the company's Cottage Grove and North Branch facilities. Those expansions will support the future growth of the company's Renewal by Andersen window replacement business. About 200 new workers will be hired at the plants in those cities.
Andersen received about $1.5 million in financial assistance from the state of Minnesota's Job Creation Fund and another $500,000 from the Minnesota Investment Fund.
Andersen's three expansions have delighted state officials who watched as the Great Recession's housing slump hammered the 112-year-old business. Andersen suffered five staff reductions between 2007 and 2009 that affected more than 450 workers in Minnesota and another 490 in North Carolina and Wisconsin.
But now the housing industry has bounced back. Orders for Andersen's doors and windows have been strong from apartment and condo builders as well as homeowners renovating existing properties. The company has also enjoyed rising orders as housing starts have picked up since the recession ended.
"This is an exciting time for Andersen," Andersen CEO Jay Lund said in a statement. "After navigating a historic housing market recession, our markets are beginning to recover, and more importantly our investments in innovation and diversification are fueling the growth of our company."
Lund said the support the company received from the state made a difference.
"While we had many options on where to locate this production facility, there were compelling business reasons to expand in our home state of Minnesota," he said.
Gov. Mark Dayton said in a statement that the "announcement to expand [Andersen's] Cottage Grove and North Branch facilities builds on the great news … in Bayport. I congratulate Andersen Corporation for its tremendous successes."