Northland Thinks Big in Texas


Northland Products has made an opening investment of $2.5 million in a new lubricating oil and engine coolant manufacturing and distribution center in Temple, Texas that will include at least 20,000 square feet on a 10.5 acre site.

This is the initial phase of the project, and that was only the initial commitment that we made to Temple on what we would do, Eric Petersen, Northlands executive vice president and chief operating officer, told Lube Report. We would anticipate that it will advance significantly beyond that both in scope as well as in investment. Weve already begun basic site construction now, and we would anticipate operating sometime probably in the second to third quarter of 09.

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The combination of a skilled workforce in the area and very good distribution logistics – both rail and truck – were especially appealing to Northland, according to Petersen. Temples location – northwest of Houston and slightly northeast of Austin – also held geographic appeal.

It gets us close enough to the markets that we wanted to serve without having some of the exposure thats inherent in being located right on the Gulf, he explained. We looked at that aspect of things pretty closely – if were going to be in Texas, in the Gulf Coast area, do you want to be right on the coast or do you want to have some buffer from some of the potential disruptions inherent with the weather in that part of the country? That was a big decision to make. There are benefits to being on the coast, but we had to balance that against being in a situation where the likelihood of having a weather related disruption is quite minimal.

Petersen said the plant will manufacture products that include motor oil, engine fluids, industrial fluids, other factory fill oils and lubricants. Waterloo, Iowa-based Northland Products serves original equipment manufacturers, industrial manufacturers, on- and off-highway trucking and heavy equipment fleets, and branded and aftermarket automotive service providers. The company operates manufacturing and technical service sites in Waterloo, and in Toronto, Canada, servicing customers throughout North America.

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