While the local economy has taken a beating because of the worldwide economic downturn, there were some positive developments in 2010, and the potential for good news in 2011.
Speaking to the first 2011 noon meeting luncheon of Archbold Area Chamber of Commerce, Monday, Jan. 10, Jim Wyse, Archbold mayor, gave his annual State of the Village address.
Archbold’s two largest employers are Sauder Woodworking and ConAgra.
“At Sauder, the signifi- cance of 2010 was it was the first year in a few years they had no layoffs, and they even hired some college student help over the summer.
“Kevin (Sauder, company president and chief executive officer) tells me even with the decline in sales in 2010, they had solid profits, and they have positioned themselves for long-term stability and success.
“Of course, when the largest employer in town thinks they will have stability and success, that bodes well for the rest of the community.”
While Archbold’s ConAgra plant is in the midst of a slowdown, Wyse said, “we’ve been advised that it’s just a temporary slowdown, they’re just trying to reduce some inventory, and that business remains strong.
“Their employment numbers are just under 400, which is up over 150 over the last two or three years since they made the decision to stay open,” Wyse said. Jobs Out, Jobs In
During 2010, jobs left Archbold, while others came to the village.
Last year, Fypon said it was moving 90 jobs out of Archbold. Originally, it was announced the jobs would be leaving for an Indiana site in the fall of this year, but that was moved up to summer, he said.
Archbold Hospital became the Archbold Medical Center, as inpatient and emergency room services were discontinued.
Quality Graphics and Scott Port-A-Fold closed their doors. There were about 20 employees left between the two.
On the other side of the ledger, Sanoh America Inc. took over the former Cooper- Standard building. Wyse said Sanoh’s original goal was to have 35 employees working in Archbold by the fall of 2010. When fall arrived, there were 48 workers on the payroll.
Additionally, Ruralogic, an information technology start-up company, announced it would locate an office in Archbold.
Wyse said the company has a verbal agreement with Sauder Woodworking to occupy office space at the south end of the Barre Road plant.
“They are currently working on the paperwork to make that official,” Wyse said.
Training of employees for Ruralogic has been underway at Northwest State Community College. Wyse said the first group will graduate Jan. 21, and a second group in March. A third class starts in January.
“They (Ruralogic) continue to try to get some funds from the Department of Labor, and we look forward to seeing them begin at their location in Archbold in 2011,” Wyse said. Economic Development
Wyse said village officials continue to work on the economic development front, to try to bring new businesses to Archbold.
“We have some things we’re working on that we’ve only been involved with for a few days, and we have some things we’ve been working on for two years,” Wyse said.
“I’m very optimistic we’ll have some positive news for the community. I look forward to, and I’m excited about, the opportunities that lie ahead.
“Hopefully, that will be in the first half of 2011 rather than in the second half.
“I really can’t go into any further detail,” he said.