Adds to County’s total of more than 70 Japanese-based businesses

(GWINNETT- METRO ATLANTA) August 29, 2013 – HAMACO Industries Corporation, Idaka America, Inc., and Okaya (USA), Inc., have announced the location of North American operations in Gwinnett County, Georgia, this week. The list of internationally based businesses in the County exceeds 500, and more than 70 of those are Japanese companies.

The announcement comes while representatives from both Gwinnett County and Gwinnett Chamber Economic Development are in Japan, participating in an international business mission led by Georgia Governor Nathan Deal. While there, the delegation celebrated the 40th anniversary of the opening of the state’s oldest international economic development office in Tokyo.

“The more investment we see from Japan, the more we can point to the value of having a business-friendly state,” said Gov. Nathan Deal. “Establishing an office in Japan 40 years ago has brought Georgia a very mature corporate presence from that country. We welcome these three companies as they join the ranks of some 350 Japanese companies already here.”

“On behalf of Gwinnett County, I am pleased to welcome Okaya, HAMACO, and Idaka America to our growing international business community,” stated Gwinnett County Board of Commission Chairman Charlotte Nash. “We are committed to increasing Gwinnett’s expansion into international markets and promoting the County as a prime destination for companies worldwide. We celebrate the success Japanese companies find in our community and look forward to future growth.”

HAMACO Industries Corporation, a subsidiary of Japanese-based Hamada Industry Co., Ltd., designs and manufactures material handling equipment, such as hydraulic foot-operated lift tables and carts, from its startup U.S. headquarters at 1780 Corporate Drive, Suite 415 in the Norcross area.

“We are proud to call Gwinnett County, Georgia the home of our new HAMACO office. We were seeking a location with access to a quality workforce and airport that would enable us to connect more effectively to the Americas, and we found that here,” stated Ms. Masumi Ito, General Manager for HAMACO Industries Corporation.

Importer, exporter, and processor of iron and steel products, Okaya (USA), Inc. has opened its local Atlanta office at 1770 Corporate Drive, Suite 555, in the Norcross area. Both HAMACO and Okaya’s facilities are located in the Gwinnett Corporate Center.

“Gwinnett Corporate Center is thrilled to be the new location of two of Gwinnett’s Japanese companies – Okaya and HAMACO. Over the years, numerous other Japanese companies have called our business park home and we look forward to welcoming more in the near future,” commented Allan Anderson, Senior Vice President for Dexter Companies, LLC, and manager of Gwinnett Corporate Center.

Japanese trading company, Idaka America, Inc. distributes machinery and spare parts to the automobile industry. Its Duluth area location at 3675 Crestwood Parkway, Suite 230, houses a sales office.

“Idaka America, Inc. is very excited to open a new office in the beautiful county of Gwinnett. The people here are friendly and welcoming and we look forward to building many relationships with the folks of Gwinnett County,” stated Kimiaki Mitsuno, President of Idaka America, Inc.

“These companies are welcome additions to the growing international business community in the Gwinnett Place area,” stated Joe Allen, Executive Director of the Gwinnett Place Community Improvement District. “These announcements confirm that the Gwinnett Place area is poised for significant investment and revitalization. I am confident that HAMAKO, Idaka America, and Okaya will quickly realize the benefits and advantages of doing business here.”

Additionally, Mitsubishi Electric US Cooling & Heating Division recently celebrated the opening of its corporate headquarters facility in Gwinnett County. This U.S. subsidiary of Tokyo-based Mitsubishi Electric Corporation has called the community home since 1992.

“We chose to continue to invest in Gwinnett County and the metro Atlanta region as it offers a strategic location that enables us to better serve our customers nationwide,” stated Shuji Morisaki, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Mitsubishi Electric US Cooling & Heating Division.

“Gwinnett County is considered the epicenter for Asian citizens and companies in the Southeast U.S. and we are excited to be home to a large and growing number of Japanese businesses,” stated Nick Masino, Senior Vice President of Partnership Gwinnett and Gwinnett Chamber Economic Development. “To support the development of international businesses, Partnership Gwinnett aims to position the County as a hub for global companies and develop opportunities for them to prosper.”

Gwinnett is home to more than 70 Japanese companies, which employ more than 2,900 people in the metro Atlanta area.

For more information, or to learn how to get involved in local economic development efforts, please visit www.gwinnetteconomicdevelopment.com.