Germany-based AE Group AG, a manufacturer of metal alloys and aluminum die cast components for the automotive and aerospace industries, has selected LaGrange for its North American headquarters and its first U.S. manufacturing facility. AE Group, which stands for Ankenbauer and Engelbrecht, employs some 1,600 persons in six locations in Austria, Germany and Poland. The new facility in LaGrange represents a $50 million investment over the next five years, bringing 300 new jobs to the area. It is one of several German companies that has located in LaGrange, according to Bobby Carmichael, chairman of the LaGrange-Troup Country Chamber of Commerce Development Authority. “[AE Group] chose LaGrange because of its total package. Probably the price of land, local incentives and proximity to automotive plants in Alabama where it expects to sell its products,” Mr. Carmichael told GlobalAtlanta. Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama has a plant in Montgomery, Ala., and Honda Manufacturing of Alabama LLC is located in Lincoln, Ala. “There are also a couple of other German-based companies here, and we introduced them, so I think this added to our credibility based on their success here,” he added. He said that German manufacturer Nesper AG that makes parts for electrical outlets has been in LaGrange for “six or eight years and is very pleased.” Georgia was one of three states the AE Group was considering, and with the help of the Georgia Department of Economic Development, the company made the final decision between LaGrange and Gainesville. Mr. Carmichael said that visits of LaGrange community representatives to Germany to meet with AE Group, as well as LaGrange's proximity to Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, helped secure the deal. Beginning in August with an initial $15 million investment, the company will construct a 200,000-square-foot manufacturing plant in the Jim Hamilton Industrial Park in LaGrange. The facility is expected to start operations next year. Contact the Georgia Department of Economic Development at (404) 962-4830 for more information. Contact Mr. Carmichael at (706) 880-2211.