Mt. Vernon, Illinois, in Jefferson County sits at the crossroads of Interstate Highways 57 and 64, just one hour east of St. Louis and one hour west of Evansville, Indiana.
Manufacturing got its start in Mt. Vernon back in the early 1890s when the Mt. Vernon “Car Shops” produced thousands of railway cars and railroad equipment for the nation. Over the years the products have changed, but the talented workforce and productivity of the people has not.
With highway access to over 66 percent of the United States, Mt. Vernon has a reputation as the manufacturing hub of Southern Illinois. Many manufacturers call Jefferson County Home, including Continental Tire the Americas; National Railway Equipment, Magnum Steel Works, InnoTech Manufacturing, Everbrite Neon Sign, PPG, Sun Container, Mt. Vernon Mold Works, National Belt Service, Phoenix Modular Elevator, Bennett Metal Products and Schulte Industries, Inc.
Continental Tire the Americas LLC currently has 150 acres of manufacturing under roof with current expansions of another 300,000 square feet in the planning and construction phases. With 3,432 employees in one location, CTA is the anchor of manufacturers in Jefferson County and the state’s largest private-sector employer south of Peoria. CTA produces approximately 13.4 million passenger tires and 3.15 million truck and utility vehicle tires per year. CTA is a top-line manufacturer utilizing robotics and modernization techniques where applicable.
Employee-owned National Railway Equipment Co., headquartered in Mt. Vernon with more than 200 team members, is a global leader in the rail, marine and power industries. They have nine locations in North America and three affiliates overseas. Offering engineering solutions around the globe, NRE – Locomotive is the world’s largest independent supplier of locomotive services, new and remanufactured locomotives, locomotive leasing, field services, parts and salvage operations serving Class 1, regional, short-line, government and industrial railroads around the globe.
Magnum Steel Works Corp has been in business since 2005 and has grown from a 12,000-square-foot building to a 34,000-square-foot facility, and most recently to a state-of-the-art 128,000-square-foot facility on the west side of Mt. Vernon. Magnum Steel Works specializes in high quality machine works for manufacturing and the coal mining industries including heavy fabrication, sheet metal fabrication, manual and CNC Machining MIG and TIG welding waterjet cutting, laser cutting, turret punch, rebuild services and CNC press bakes.
InnoTech Manufacturing LLC is a versatile, creative metals manufacturing company. With more than 70 combined years in the manufacturing and construction industries, the principles of InnoTech consistently made innovations which save time and resources for the various construction trades. InnoTech specializes in MIG/TIG welding, plasma cutting, press brakes and custom CNC folding of many products. InnoTech performs their own powder coating of all finished products. In addition, InnoTech is an UltraLox dealer and manufactures aluminum railings for commercial and residential projects across the nation.
Everbrite – Mt. Vernon Neon Sign has designed and manufactured point-of-purchase signs, displays and outdoor identity systems since 1927. Everbrite has progressed to become a global leader in visual identification and LED lighting. As a world leader in the visual branding and identity industry, Everbrite services A-List companies throughout the world in markets including automotive, brewery, convenience stores, medical, retail petroleum and quick service restaurants. Mt. Vernon Neon Sign is Everbright’s only domestic producer of custom neon signs and one of only a handful in the nation. Everbrite’s dedication to excellence and innovation as well as world-class care for their customers has made them one of the brightest choices in the business.
PPG has been a global leader in the paint and coatings industry for more than 130 years and operates more than 160 plants in roughly 70 countries. Originally known as Vanex Inc., the Mt. Vernon facility opened in 1963. PPG acquired the plant in 2008 and it has since experienced tremendous growth. The plant produced over 1.25 million gallons of product in 2018 alone. PPG currently employs more than 50 individuals. Paint produced here is used in the production of steel buildings, metal roofs, high-end louvers and shutters, John Deere and Case New Holland tractors, Continental white-wall tires and many other incredible products.
Phoenix Modular Elevator is the largest producer of quality, commercial modular elevators in the world, with a 20-year international track record. PME elevators are manufactured elevators, meaning the hoist-way and the elevator car are built together as one unit, ready for installation. PME delivers high-quality, commercial elevators in less time and with a faster installation than the out-of-date stick-built alternative. Once the complete elevator arrives on site, it is craned into place and the installer connects it to power and performs final testing and adjusting. With power connected, the elevator can be fully functional and ready for inspection in less than one week.
Bennett Metal Products, Inc. is a second-generation, family-owned, ISO-certified shop offering multi-axis CNC precision milling and turning, product prototyping, mechanical and electrical assembly, welding, waterjet cutting, conventional machining, short-run production, tool & die building and testing. Over the last five decades, Bennett Metal Products, Inc. has been committed to becoming one of the finest precision job shops in the Midwest and has experienced continuous and steady growth. Around the clock operation, combined with their central location and access to major interstate and trucking lines, enables them to ship products quickly and economically anywhere in the Continental United States.
Schulte Industries, Inc. has grown to $1 million in sales over the last five years. Schulte Industries specializes in reusable packing and transport materials for shop floors; namely, sewing multi-pocket bags that fit in industrial crates. Schulte Industries employs material cutters, multiple component sewers and final sewing assemblers. At Schulte Industries, employees see some of the next generation models of vehicles and boats before they ever reach the market. When they see a Toyota Camry drive by, they know they had a part in that vehicle’s production.