A German cosmetics company has chosen Elgin to house its first U.S. manufacturing plant that will focus on making eyeliners.
Faber-Castell Cosmetics, a 40-year-old growing company, said it is leasing a state-of-the-art plant where cosmetic pencils will be made for the North American market.
The $9 million project will create 50 full-time jobs over the next three years, said Christina Zech, managing director of Faber-Castell Cosmetics. She said the company plans to move in at the end of the year with 10 to 15 workers. "We are planning to start shipping in the first quarter 2019," she said Thursday. She said the company will not reveal the Elgin address until the opening.
The move to Elgin resulted from a visit Gov. Bruce Rauner had with the company in Stein, Germany, in late spring, she said.
"It is an honor to welcome Faber-Castell to the Illinois manufacturing family," said Rauner, who is making a re-election bid Nov. 6 against Democrat J.B. Pritzker.
The state is providing financial incentives. Under EDGE, companies can get a credit against income taxes equal to 50 percent of withholdings associated with each new job, up to the level of projected investment.
The private label manufacturer produces products for other brands that are sold in drugstores and cosmetic departments as well as in specialty chains such as Sephora and Ulta, Zech said.
"The U.S. facility will become Faber-Castell Cosmetics' beta factory with exceptional, industry-standard processes and systems, in addition to offering U.S. customers the same speed-to-market and convenience now enjoyed by Europe and Brazil," said company President Countess Mary von Faber-Castell.
The company, best known for pens, pencils and art supplies, dates back to 1761 and does business with more than 100 countries. The cosmetic division, Faber-Castell Cosmetics, is celebrating its 40th year anniversary as a private label cosmetic manufacturer.
"Adding a North American facility is a remarkable milestone for our company," Zech said. "The strategic location in between the coasts along with the exceptional workforce Illinois boasts made it a natural choice for our next facility," she said. The workforce needs to be highly skilled since the equipment is highly automated, she added.
Finding workers and economic development is a collaborative effort, said Sean McCarthy, director of the Illinois Department of Commerce.
"We have worked closely with Faber-Castell, both in Illinois and in Germany, as well as partners like former Illinois Sen. Karen McConnaughay, the Illinois Manufacturers Association, the City of Elgin, and Harper College, to solidify this deal for Illinois," he said.