Senator John Hoeven today marked the grand opening of the new $28 million Bobcat Company Acceleration Center located at the company's Bismarck-based Northern Plains Commerce Centre (NPCC) facility. The 190,000 square-foot facility will house office and lab space, classrooms, demonstration and machine operation areas, and its 175 employees will conduct initial design and prototype manufacturing, testing new ideas and concepts and helping to bring future Bobcat products to market more quickly. Bobcat has invested $43 million in its NPCC facility since 2005.
Hoeven has been working, both as governor and now as senator, to help expand Bobcat's operations in North Dakota. In 2011, Senator Hoeven traveled to South Korea to promote trade and push for the new U.S.-South Korea Trade Agreement. While there, Hoeven met with Yongmaan Park, Chairman of Doosan Corp., the parent company of Bobcat. The Senator encouraged him to expand Bobcat's operations in North Dakota, and in 2012, the company announced its expansion plans in Bismarck. The South Korea trade agreement as well as trade agreements with Panama and Columbia, which Hoeven also supported, passed in the last session of Congress and opened new markets for Bobcat products."For many years, Bobcat has been a tremendous partner in growing the economy of North Dakota, and now it's a pleasure to see them ramp up and expand again," Hoeven said. "This new facility will support and enhance Bobcat's and North Dakota's climate of innovation, developing the cutting-edge products for a world market, which we've worked hard to develop in our state." Last month, Hoeven joined the ceremony held in Gwinner, North Dakota, celebrating the production of Bobcat's one millionth loader. The senator was also present for Bobcat's 500,000th and 750,000th loader celebrations in 2001 and 2008, respectively. Bobcat currently employs 240 full-time, salaried employees at its Bismarck locations and 400 hourly employees at its Bismarck Factory. The company, which employs more than 2,000 North Dakotans, maintains headquarters in West Fargo and has additional facilities located in Fargo, Gwinner and Wahpeton.