Surface Igniter Relocates to Innovation Valley, Brings 100-Plus Jobs

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Surface Igniter, LLC is bringing more than 100 new jobs to Innovation Valley as it moves its headquarters and manufacturing operations from Puerto Rico to the Blount County Industrial Park in Maryville, Tennessee.

"The decision of Surface Igniter to move its facility and expand to in the Innovation Valley is a testament to the teamwork of economic development professionals." - Rhonda Rice, executive vice president for the Knoxville Chamber.

Surface Igniter, LLC, is bringing more than 100 new jobs to Innovation Valley as it moves its headquarters and manufacturing operations from Puerto Rico to the Blount County Industrial Park in Maryville, Tennessee.

“The decision of Surface Igniter to move its facility and expand to in the Innovation Valley is a testament to the teamwork of economic development professionals,” said Rhonda Rice, executive vice president for the Knoxville Chamber. “By working with companies to grow and expand their operations, new jobs are being created and the entire region will benefit.”

The Surface Igniter is a leading manufacturer of hot surface igniters for the heating, cooking, clothes dryer and BBQ grill industries. The company will begin production immediately with 54 employees in the 55,000-square foot Blount County industrial building, formerly known as the Klote International Facility, located at 1709 Henry G. Lane Street in Maryville. The labor total is expected to double within the next three years.

“We are pleased to have Surface Igniter moving its entire operation to Blount County,” said Blount County Mayor Ed Mitchell. “The growth we are experiencing is phenomenal and the variety of businesses moving here shows the diversity of the work force we have to offer.”

“Getting a company to move its entire manufacturing and headquarters to this area really speaks to the quality of life and workforce available here,” said Maryville Mayor Tom Taylor. “Those movements are rare and it means a lot to me that this community is inducive to eliciting an international company to making Maryville its new home.”

Surface Igniter was incorporated in 1997 after Graphite Sales Inc. bought the silicon carbide, hot surface igniter business from The Carborundum Company. The iconic, double helix igniter was developed by The Carborundum Company in the late 1960’s, and was the first silicon carbide gas igniter in the industry. Originally introduced as the ignition source for gas clothes dryers in the 70’s, the novel ignition method was rapidly adopted throughout the gas industry. Hot surface ignition is still the most reliable and cost effective method for gas ignition after more than 40 years of its introduction.

About Innovation Valley:
Innovation Valley is the regional economic development initiative centered on a 25-mile Technology Corridor with world-class resources in science, technology, and business. Experience shows that a regional approach to economic development offers the most advantages to businesses planning a corporate relocation or expansion and the communities involved. Visit http://www.knoxvilleoakridge.com for more information.

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Jenny Woodbery
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