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EFACEC starts hiring process

POSTED: August 12, 2008 5:00 a.m.

Portuguese conglomerate EFACEC is beginning the hiring process for the plant it will build in Effingham County.

Human resources personnel from the firm that will build electrical transformers at a facility to be built at the conjunction of Highways 21 and 275 at the Effingham Industrial Park. EFACEC has begun looking for electrical engineers, mechanical engineers, draftsmen and transformer specialists.

“They were surprised at the number of candidates from the Savannah area,” said Effingham Industrial Development Authority CEO John Henry said.

EFACEC plans to hire an initial wave of 40 employees and send them to Portugal for nine months of training while the facility is being built. EFACEC is advertising it is looking for five mechanical engineers, eight draftsmen, 11 electrical engineers and 16 transformer specialists.

According to Henry, EFACEC officials are now looking at an official groundbreaking in October, to accommodate the schedules of company officials and Portuguese dignitaries who wish to be a part of the ceremony. Work on the 55-acre site could begin in September, in advance of the groundbreaking.

EFACEC also wants to establish a program to get good candidates through the Savannah campus of Georgia Tech.

“They want to try to get the same situation with Savannah Technical College,” Henry said, noting the STC Effingham campus is across Highway 21 from where the EFACEC plant will go up.

As EFACEC gears up, the Savannah Yacht Company has been drydocked. The building and land were bought at auction earlier this month for $4.5 million by BB&T, the bank holding the mortgage. The purchase includes two yachts not yet completed.

Savannah Yacht Company built the Savannah 54, a high-end, luxury boat at its Effingham Industrial Park facility. The company was started by Bill Barrington and other former Sea-Ray executives.

It debuted its Savannah 54 at the Miami International Boat Show in February 2007.

Savannah Yacht Company had been in talks with HTH Yachts, a subsidiary of grocery distribution firm H.T. Hackney of Knoxville, Tenn. The company also had an option on 12 acres that will revert back to the IDA. The building is valued at $1 million.

“That gives us something else to market,” Henry said of the 12 acres. “Having that building is a good marketing tool for us.”

Henry is scheduled to meet with BB&T representatives to discuss marketing the facility.

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