Cemen Tech will be investing in new manufacturing technology to improve its operations and address workforce issues thanks to the state of Iowa’s new Manufacturing 4.0 grants.
“This grant helps close an ROI gap that may otherwise direct resources elsewhere, and it represents a commitment on behalf of the State of Iowa to invest in its manufacturing infrastructure. We appreciate the foresight by our elected officials to keep our manufacturing base strong, which bolsters our middle class and provides communities like Indianola with high-paying jobs,” said Connor Deering, CEO and President, Cemen Tech.
The $400,000 grant will be used to install production automation tools to relieve certain health and safety issues for Cemen Tech’s employee owners. “We have identified certain job functions that are repetitive, strain employees’ physical health, and do not add significant value to the production process. We will put robots and other automation solutions in to redeploy those employees to more value-added, fulfilling work,” said Josh Maurer, CFO at Cemen Tech.
Cemen Tech continues to leverage resources provided by the Center for Industrial Research and Service, Iowa Association of Business and Industry and Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA), as well as the company’s own internal industrial engineers’ ingenuity to add value and speed to its production process. The company has experienced immense growth and the only way to keep up with demand is to invest in automation to expand its employee owners’ output.
Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds and the IEDA awarded $20 million in Manufacturing 4.0 Workforce Innovation grants to 46 Iowa companies and an additional $1.9 million in Equipment Technology Investment Grants to 37 companies across the state.
Iowa’s Manufacturing 4.0 plan, launched in February 2021, creates a roadmap to help Iowa manufacturers remain globally competitive through a fourth industrial revolution that emphasizes automation and smart technology.
The Workforce Innovation grants are geared toward Iowa manufacturers with between 76 and 250 employees across locations investing in Industry 4.0 technologies to address workforce issues exacerbated by the negative impacts of COVID-19. Grants of up to $500,000 were awarded, and companies were required to have a minimum match of 25 percent.