Crown Equipment Corporation

Industry: Manufacturing RDP Investment: $17.5 million Launched: March 2023

Kinston, NC – Rural Development Partners allocated $17.5 million, and Five Points Community Capital $7.5 million in New Markets Tax Credit allocation to help Crown Equipment finance the timely acquisition, modernization, and equipping of a vacated 255,295 SF building adjacent to its current facility. The shuttered plant left 159 employees without a job and little employment opportunity in rural Lenoir County. The expansion is expected to create 192 jobs and retain 340, some of which will be re-shored from the Company’s overseas operations.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Lenoir County lost nearly 23% of its population since 1990 causing a domino effect of economic downturns and social ailments. Kinston, once a thriving community, has suffered from multiple environmental disasters over the past 30 years, and more recently from Hurricane Matthew and Florence that devastatingly swept through the City’s low-lying predominantly African American neighborhoods. The catalytic impact of the Project and the Company’s plans to bring back jobs from its overseas operations will restore lost jobs in this non-metropolitan community. The results are expected to drive local development efforts to restore Kinston’s economic decline by providing high-quality manufacturing jobs offering living wages, benefits, and training.

“RDP is thrilled to partner with Crown on their expansion in Kinston, NC. The expansion will bring even more high-quality jobs to the region in addition to the onshoring of jobs currently held overseas. Crown’s continued commitment to the Kinston area will go a long ways in helping to support economic stability in the region.” – Dan Helgeson, CEO of Rural Development Partners

The new facility features environmentally sustainable improvements, exemplifying the company’s commitment to redevelop land and reuse buildings that will help preserve and revitalize the community. The expansion improves Crown’s manufacturing capacity, allowing them to produce more than 75% recyclable lift trucks while providing for future expansion of manufacturing services.

“We are excited about the expansion of Crown’s footprint in Kinston, North Carolina. This expansion would not have been possible in the scope and expedited time frames we are planning without the availability of the New Markets Tax Credits provided in conjunction with our partners at Rural Development Partners, Five Points Community Capital, and US Bank Community Development Corporation. This expansion will allow Crown to significantly expand our production capabilities, onshore and/or dual source component manufacturing from other global regions of the world and create nearly 200 additional employment opportunities for the residents of the city of Kinston and Lenoir County.” – Craig Seitz, Senior Vice President & Chief Financial Officer of Crown Equipment

Corporation Crown Equipment

Crown Equipment Corporation, founded and headquartered in Ohio, is a leading innovator of world-class forklift and material handling equipment. The company has earned more than 100 prominent international design awards while developing and manufacturing a broad range of electric and internal combustion (gas) forklifts, as well as automation and fleet management technologies. Crown has been one of the largest employers in Lenoir County (NC) for more than 30 years. Their expansion will give the community a much-needed economic boost, while providing additional manufacturing and assembly space to meet their growing customer demand.

RDP Impact

*192 jobs created
*340 jobs retained

*Reshoring Overseas Jobs to America
*Preservation & Revitalization of a Vacant Building


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