WD Flooring announces major manufacturing initiative in Laona
WD Flooring recently announced a major new manufacturing enterprise to be based in Laona adjacent to WD Flooring’s main plant.
The new manufactured flooring mill will produce engineered plank flooring, which is hardwood flooring, not to be confused with Pergo or laminates. These floors will share the same look, feel and wearability of solid hardwood flooring but offer more stability and versatility of applications. Engineered plank wood flooring has some advantages over solid 3/4″ wood flooring., It’s environmentally friendly, more stable and versatile and less costly.
Wisconsin Lt. Governor Rebecca Kleefisch was on hand to help make the announcement. “This announcement by WD Flooring reflects the entrepreneurial spirit of Wisconsin small business owners that will be the engine of Wisconsin’s economic recovery and future,” she said. The new enterprise will create an additional 58 jobs in Laona as well as support retention of more than 100 jobs.
WD Flooring is the largest hardwood flooring company in the Midwest. Producing one million square feet per month, its hardwood floors have several notable installations, including the Detroit Art Institute, Weisman Art Museum, the Latvian National Gallery, Country Music Hall of Fame, the practice facility of the Beijing Olympics, and African Intercontinental Basketball Championship. A floor that was produced in Laona is at the New York Stock Exchange.
Acknowledging the economic crisis and housing downturn that has hampered industry, CEO Peter H. Connor noted that the company must develop new products to expand its product mix and maintain its relevance to its customers. ” These products include engineered flooring to take advantage of markets like multi-family and selling into regions of the North American market, where engineered flooring is most prevalent, as well as Europe, where the product is market dominant. We will be executing this plan right here in Forest County.”
In addition to Connor’s investment in the project, the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation is providing a $750,000 loan to support the project. The development of this initiative included the resources of the Forest County Economic Development Partnership (FCEDP) and Small Business Development Council (SBDC).