Governor Kitzhaber today saw first-hand how an Oregon company has continued to create new jobs during the recession by investing in innovative technology, accessing new markets for its products, and identifying opportunities for growth in the emerging clean economy. In a tour of Bulk Handling Systems in Eugene, the Governor learned about how the company has expanded from 125 to 200 employees in the past 18 months.
"Bulk Handling Systems is a terrific success story," said Governor Kitzhaber. "It's an example of how Oregon will emerge stronger and more prosperous from this challenging economic time through innovation and entrepreneurial drive, with Oregonians designing and building the products of the 21st century."
Bulk Handling Systems, founded in 1976, designs, manufactures, and installs processing systems tailored to extract recyclables from waste streams while minimizing the residue that is landfilled. In the early 1980s, it diversified to enter the solid waste and recycling industry in response to increasing landfill closures and mandated recycling and designed the first Single Stream processing system in the United States.
"Some of the best "green' innovations are coming from existing companies who adapt their approach to changing markets," said Governor Kitzhaber. "Oregon is a leader in clean technology, clean energy, and advanced manufacturing with tremendous growth potential across the globe. The state can and must partner with the private sector to build on this opportunity."
The Governor's Jobs and Innovation strategy includes a focus on expanding international trade opportunities for Oregon products and technology. In May, Business Oregon, the state's economic development agency, provided an Oregon Trade Promotion Program grant to help defray the cost for Bulk Handling Systems to attend a Moscow trade show. At that show, company officials connected with four potential Russian distributors and received 25 sales leads. Bulk Handling Systems estimates those connections will result in $15 million in new sales of their products.
The Governor returned last Friday from a two week Business Mission to Asia visiting three countries and numerous companies, including Hanjin, Sanyo, Nike, COSCO and Asiana Cargo.