Company success story: Vonco Products, LLC
Vonco Products is a leading manufacturer of high-performance flexible packaging and promotional products that has been creating customized solutions utilizing more than 60 years of experience in materials; bag, pouch and sleeve design; and seals and closures. The full-service company has the ability to take a packaging idea from concept to product totally in-house to satisfy customer goals and needs. These in-house services support a one-stop shop that facilitates the ease of doing business.
Vonco has a reputation for supplying quality products that meet or exceed customer needs, and has done so consistently. As a result, the company has developed numerous long-term relationships with global customers including Land O’Lakes Inc., Quest Diagnostics, The Libman Co., Smithfield Foods, 3M, Halyard Health and Medtronic.
Location: Currently located in Lake Villa, Illinois, Vonco will relocate its operations to the Town of Salem in Kenosha County by the end of 2017.
Leadership: Keith Smith has been president of Vonco since 2012.
Business success: Vonco, which has outgrown its existing facility in northern Illinois, announced in October that it would relocate to an 80,500-square-foot facility at the Salem Business Park. The company is pursuing an aggressive growth strategy that projects annual double-digit increases in sales over the next few years. The $12.8 million project is expected to meet the company’s current and future capacity needs.
Vonco plans to invest in more than $4 million in new equipment the first three years, including a new printing press and several new pieces of converting equipment.
“We’re very excited about what our new location means in terms of delivering solutions for our customers, especially with the launch of our new division focused on liquid-tight packaging,” Smith says.
Wisconsin business environment benefits: Once Vonco realized it needed to expand, the company evaluated sites both in Illinois and Wisconsin before making its decision, Smith says. “The proximity to the Wisconsin border made it easy to consider Wisconsin,” he says.
“As KABA developed a new opportunity for us, along with Salem, it became clear what the best alternative was for the long-term competitiveness of the company. It came down to Salem and Wisconsin because of the favorable business climate and better long-term economics.” Smith adds that the Kenosha County location will position the company well for continued growth. “One of the reasons we chose this location specifically was to have the ability to further expand,” he says. “This site in Salem moves us from 55,000 square feet to 80,500 square feet, with the ability to go to 135,000. That was key, because our growth plans are large and we need to make sure we have a site, a space and a partner in Wisconsin that’s going to support us.”
The Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) worked closely with the Kenosha Area Business Alliance (KABA), the Milwaukee 7 regional economic development organization and the Town of Salem to facilitate Vonco’s relocation to Wisconsin. Tools utilized included a tax increment financing district and $500,000 in performance-based tax credits.