“It takes a lot of entrepreneurship; it takes a lot of innovation; it takes a lot of conviction to make that decision to take that step to invest capitol here,” said Simon.
Elan-Polo Inc. will start production of injection-molded footwear in March at a factory in Hazelhurst, Georgia. The company previously made the shoes overseas.
At the press conference Elan-Polo CEO Joe Russell cited “support and encouragement” from Wal-Mart, which it has been supplying with goods for 35 years.
EveryWare Global Inc. will produce canning jars for Wal-Mart at its Monaca, Pennsylvania, facility, establishing a new made in the U.S. product line.
And Louis Hornick and Co., a Wal-Mart supplier for four decades, will establish a new facility in Allendale County, South Carolina, to make window coverings and home textiles.
“Our next goal is to encourage other businesses just like these to step up to the plate,” Pritzker said.
Thursday’s announcement was part of Wal-Mart’s pledge, announced in January to buy an additional $50 billion in U.S.-made products over the next decade.
In August, the company held a “manufacturing summit” attended by more than 500 suppliers from 34 states clamoring to get a slice of the action.
Reuters reported in September that in advance of Wal-Mart’s patriotic pledge, many of the company’s long-time suppliers had already decided to produce in the United States as rising wages in China and elsewhere eroded the allure of offshore production.