Coast is a lavatory products manufacturer producing American-made toilets and trim fittings for some the world’s top producing manufacturers for more than 70 years. To support the company’s long-term growth, the company utilized its award to acquire a vacant 335,000 sq. ft. industrial facility as well as the onsite equipment needed to host sanitaryware manufacturing operations. The acquisition is the first step toward the company’s plans to build rehabilitation and equipment upgrades that will allow the company to maintain its footing at the site and be an economic steward to the surrounding low-income community. In addition, the facility is expected to generate 270 full-time equivalent positions.
This facility vertically integrates Coast historic production of trim fittings and other products with full-scale production of toilets. Upon stabilization, the facility will allow Coast to manufacture toilet seats, sink basins, urinals, and all parts related to bathroom fixtures such as toilet seats, internal toilet components, flush valves, and fill valves. The facility allows the company to produce more than 1,225,000 full toilet sets, 550,000 other sanitaryware products, and 425,000 toilet seats per year. Additionally, in line with customer preferences, the equipment enhancements have allowed retailers and bathroom fixture wholesalers to have its brand name embossed on the company’s products.
The Project is located in a severely distressed community of Kokomo, Indiana that is characterized by a poverty rate of 36.2%, an AMI of 47.89%, and an unemployment rate that is 1.73 times the national average.
After the previous porcelain manufacturer ceased operations at the Kokomo facility, it sat vacant for two years causing unrest in the community in addition to job and tax dollar losses. In agreement with the City of Kokomo Comprehensive Plan, the new Coast facility brings industry back to a vacant industrial center–along with $1.15 million to the economy’s tax base–and new employment opportunities have aided in the stabilization of the community overall.