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The City of Conroe, the Greater Conroe Economic Development Council (GCEDC), and Industrial Components of Texas, LLC (ICOTEX) were the recipients of the Community Economic Development Award (CEDA) by the Texas Economic Development Council (TEDC). ICOTEX, a joint venture between Mitsubishi Caterpillar Forklift America and Jungheinrich Lift Truck Corp., was one of 40 nominated projects throughout the state.

Conroe was the recipient of the award in the category of communities with a population between 50,001 and 100,000. The award was presented at the TEDC annual meeting on Thursday, October 19 at the JW Marriott Hotel in Houston, Texas.

Collaboration between the GCEDC, City of Conroe, and ICOTEX was critical to landing the project and earning the Texas Economic Development Council’s CEDA award. The GCEDC and City leaders focused on relationship building due to the unique cultural influences of the parent companies involved in the project.

Conroe Mayor Toby Powell, along with members of city council and the GCEDC, visited the corporate headquarters in Hamburg, Germany to tour their manufacturing operations and learn more about the company’s operations in advance of the Grand Opening ceremony. The city wanted to make sure that the company was aware of Conroe’s commitment to their future success in the community.

“When ICOTEX made the decision to locate in Conroe, we made a commitment to welcome the company and their employees,” said Mayor Powell as he accepted the CEDA. “Not only is ICOTEX physically located in Conroe, they are part of the Conroe family. Conroe has embraced ICOTEX and ICOTEX has embraced Conroe.”

ICOTEX broke ground in August on their 75,000-square-foot state-of-the-art facility in Conroe Park North that will produce over 600 different types of components used in the forklift production process at Mitsubishi Caterpillar Forklift America’s manufacturing plant. Once fully staffed and operational, the company will add 83 new jobs within the community with an average annual salary of $65,467. With an overall capital investment of $18 million and over $9 million in taxable inventory over seven years, the project will generate a significant net benefit to all of the local taxing entities, creating a measurable return of 47 percent on the community’s investment in the project.

Additionally, ICOTEX has proven to be a stellar corporate citizen. The company has fostered a family culture, scheduling barbecues for their employees and families as they have been onboarding and ramping up operations. The company offers competitive salaries and benefit, while also aggressively working to hire veterans in key roles. ICOTEX has held meetings with Lone Star College-Conroe Center to establish partnerships not only to help them in their hiring process, but to also work on implementing an apprenticeship program modeled after their program in Germany.

“We are honored to be a recipient of the Community Economic Development Award,” said Danielle Scheiner, interim Director of the Greater Conroe Economic Development Council. “This award highlights the mission of our organization and the City of Conroe of attracting and retaining the best companies throughout the world. ICOTEX certainly falls into that category and we are truly excited to be recognized for this amazing project.”

The TEDC established the Community Economic Development Award (CEDA) in 1995 to honor excellence and recognize exceptional contributions of TEDC member cities toward the economic vitality of their communities and the state of Texas through creativity, leadership, and partnership in the achievement of business retention, business recruitment and community improvement.