Detroit-based Sakthi Automotive Group today began a $7 million expansion that will add 200 jobs to its manufacturing and distribution facilities in southwest Detroit. The company is constructing a standalone, 60,000-square-foot facility at the south end of its headquarters at 6401 W. Fort St. to supply under-carriage steering components and safety knuckles for several U.S. and European OEMs.
“Detroit has been a very good location to grow our company, as this is our third significant investment here in the last five years,” says Lalit Verma, CEO of Sakthi Automotive. “It is very important to us to contribute to the communities where we invest, and we will continue our commitment to train and hire Detroiters through partnerships with Detroit Employment Solutions Corp. (DESC) and Michigan’s Community Ventures program.”
Sakthi opened its first facility in Detroit in 2014 with a staff of 75, adding 100 employees at its plant located on American Way the next year. Sakthi then opened a manufacturing facility and aluminum foundry on the south side of the former Southwestern High School in 2016.
The company has recruited most of its 600 employees through DESC, in part using the State of Michigan Community Ventures Program, which provides work-related assistance and transportation support to those with employment challenges.
“Since it first came to Detroit, Sakthi has expanded three times, and 65 percent of Sakthi’s current workforce lives in the city of Detroit,” adds Mayor Mike Duggan, who attended Sakthi’s ceremonial groundbreaking. “That says everything about the value that Detroit offers global manufacturers and the value they bring to our city.”
Sakthi currently employs 202 returning citizens at its Detroit campus and plans to hire more following their expansion. Construction is expected to be completed by mid-2018.