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Arkansas Governor announces PRADCO jobs boost

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From left: PRADCO”S Chris Denson (Controller), Mark Cowan (Operations Director), Chris Gulstad (Global Marketing Director), Governor Asa Hutchinson, Mike Ledford (Human Resources Manager) and Bruce Stanton (Vice President and General Manager) pose for the cameras.
↑ Bruce Stanton and Governor Asa Hutchinson are pictured with representatives from Walmart.
↑ Robert Schoenvogel, President of PRADCO Outdoors, addresses the audience during the official visit of Arkansas Governor, Asa Hutchinson, to the company's premises in Fort Smith.

The Governor of Arkansas announced the creation of 60 new jobs at PRADCO Outdoor Brands Fishing Division during an official visit this month to the company’s Fort Smith manufacturing facility.

The investment has been driven by rising demand that will see four soft plastic machines introduced to produce YUM baits at its factory. The manufacturing line is currently a three-shift operation that runs 24 hours a day, five days a week, plus Saturdays if necessary. Additionally, PRADCO is also moving production of its Thill floats from Minnesota to Fort Smith in the near future.

The event also celebrated PRADCO working with retail giant Walmart on its initiative to buy an additional $250 billion in products supporting American jobs by 2023.

“Business is booming right now – particularly at Walmart – and we are very blessed to be able to scale up our US manufacturing operation,” said Bruce Stanton, Vice President and General Manager of PRADCO-Fishing. “This job expansion is a direct result of Walmart’s $250 billion commitment to American jobs and local manufacturing. Additionally, EBSCO, our parent company, has supported us with a strong, seven-figure investment in our YUM manufacturing capabilities and will continue to show long-term support for jobs in Arkansas.”

Last year, PRADCO added 25 full-time jobs and since January 2017 it has created a further 64 on the YUM production line. “Those jobs are thanks to Walmart, our other customers and the management team for its execution of the scale-up efforts.”

“Our customers have told us that, second to price, where products are made influences their purchase decisions,” said Cindi Marsiglio, Vice President, US Marketing, at Walmart. “We are focused on buying great quality products that create jobs in communities across the US. It makes sense for our customers, our communities and our company. Walmart’s commitment to buy $250 billion in products supporting American jobs by 2013 is having a tangible impact on communities across America.”

“It is gratifying to see Arkansas companies come together in partnership,” said Governor Asa Hutchinson. “Walmart’s initiative to support quality products made in America has had a tremendous impact on the bottom line for many American businesses and their communities, including PRADCO and Fort Smith. It’s a boon to the entire state when we provide the atmosphere businesses need to grow and prosper – and we are proud to celebrate PRADCO’s successes.”

Thill has number one market share in the US in fishing floats, with a complete line-up of balsa-made products that will be manufactured completely in Fort Smith, starting in December.

Filed In: Lures, Product News