ADA, OH (WLIO) – Wilson has been making football in Ada for about 80 years, now they want to build a new factory that could continue this tradition for another 80 years,
“We’re going to double our capacity, we’re going to make more products, we’re going to expand into other categories,” says Kevin Murphy, CEO of Wilson Team Sports.
“We’re going to turn this into a center of excellence for some of our other product categories. But we’re always going to be looking at being number one in football, that’s going to be the number one goal,” said Kevin Murphy, general manager of Wilson Team Sports.
Wilson broke ground on its new factory, which will be built east of the current factory. It was plant manager Andy Wentling’s mission to get the new plant to Ada.
“It will allow us to automate processes that we didn’t have in the past or didn’t have room for things like that,” Wentling says. “Even with the small sales, we’re actually going to customize the footballs in a more efficient way. Along with that and the presence of the NBA, our settings for basketballs, volleyballs and soccer balls, we will need more people.
They’re looking to hire about 20 more employees to add to the more than 150 currently working at the factory, and it’s that workforce that helped seal the deal to build the new plant.
“The institutional knowledge that these people have of how to make an NFL game ball is impossible to replicate,” adds Murphy. “So we don’t have a choice and we don’t want to have a choice. We want to be here, the community has been so good to us over the years.”
In addition to production, the new factory will be a place for sports fans.
“In the new space where we’re going to have a retail store, you can buy Wilson gear, volleyballs, basketballs, soccer balls, some custom stuff. So it will be a great space for us and our employees.”
Construction is expected to take about a year, and Wilson hopes to be producing footballs in the new factory in June 2024.
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