Corvette Wheel Producer Receives Funding Deal Worth $3 Million
How can you not pull for a company based in a place called Horse Cave, Kentucky?
Kentucky Chrome Works, which has been operating in that city since 2009, is the exclusive chrome plate wheel supplier for the Chevrolet Corvette and recently acquired $3 million in funding for expansion and working capital from BizCapital, the small business lending division of Advantage Capital Partners.
“As a startup company, there are limited options in terms of access to capital,” said Raymond Carcione, owner of Kentucky Chrome Works. “BizCapital was able to provide us with the flexible funding we needed to expand our business and create good jobs here in Kentucky.”
The company hopes to add 20 new workers to its payroll, which already includes 54 employees.
Three years ago, Kentucky Chrome Works started adding chrome plating to Speedline wheels by RONAL, a Switzerland-based company that supplies 4 million-plus wheels annually to General Motors, BMW, Volkswagen, Mercedes, and Fiat.
Tracy Reckert, vide president of business development for BizCapital, says the company is “delighted” to be working with Kentucky Chrome Works and help them reach their expansion goals.
“The Kentucky New Markets Development program is a vital resource for small businesses like this,” Reckert said, “and BizCapital is looking to fund additional ventures in Kentucky through this program.”
Enacted in 2010, the Kentucky New Markets Development program encourages investment in promising small businesses located in distressed communities throughout the state. Modeled after the federal New Markets Tax Credit program, the goal of the state program is to attract large, long-term investors to Kentucky’s low-income communities, promoting new expansion, creating new job opportunities, and building on existing growth in the state.
According to Kentucky Chrome Works website, the company is “ideally situated” to serve the North American OEM automotive marketplace thanks to its location on I-65, 90 miles south of Louisville and 90 miles north of Nashville.
“Our fully automated plating line can plate your wheels up to 24 inches in diameter and 13 inches in width (and larger with accommodations),” the website says. “No need to send your wheels to a separate facility for preplate polishing. We can polish and copper buff your wheels on our robotic polishing cells and we have the expertise to manually finish wheels if required.”
Now that KCW is well established, owner Carcione and General Manager Bob Biltz say they are ready to increase the company’s market share and play an important role in our nation’s economic recovery.
Let’s hope they need even more expansion funds with the expected popularity of the C7 Corvette set to be unveiled next year.
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