KINGSPORT, Tenn. (WJHL) — Eastman Chemical Company plans to build a new facility at its Kingsport plant that the company says will create more than 70 permanent jobs.
Eastman announced Friday that it will construct and operate an acetylated wood facility in Kingsport as part of a joint venture between Eastman and London-based company Accsys. The new facility will serve the North American building and construction market.
The company said the joint venture, named Accoya USA, will bring 300 construction jobs to the Kingsport manufacturing site over the next 20 months and more than 70 permanent jobs, including chemical operators, business positions, wood handling, trucking, and maintenance positions.
“We are committed to continued investment in our Kingsport site and are excited to partner with Accsys to bring more high-quality, good-paying jobs to this area as part of this new acetylated wood facility,” Eastman Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer Brad Lich said in a release. “As Eastman becomes a leading sustainable materials company, this project provides an excellent opportunity to bring a new and sustainable specialty material to the U.S. building and construction industry.”
Eastman will hold 40% ownership in the joint venture and will benefit from the acetyl supply, a land lease and site services agreement, and its share of the venture’s earnings.
“It’s a great opportunity to add jobs and a great opportunity to make an impact on the environment because both are very important to us. At Eastman, we’re incredibly excited about the progress we’re making on becoming a leading sustainable materials company and this is just an opportunity to build further momentum,” said Lich.
The facility will be located on the Jared Drive side of the plant and construction will begin immediately. It is expected to be completed in early 2024.