Wahl Clippers Expands, Community Reacts - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Wahl Clippers Expands, Community Reacts

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A community once hit hard by the loss of manufacturing jobs is celebrating some good news. One of its biggest employers is making plans to expand it's corporate headquarters in Sterling.  This move is giving residents that reassurance that this company and jobs are here to stay. The Wahl Clippers company employs close to 900 people and once this expansion is complete, five new full time positions will be added to its payroll. For 95  years, Wahl Clippers has sat in Sterling, creating the very clippers that can be seen in households and barber shops across the world. Sterling residents say even after the economy took a hit, the company's Sterling campus managed to outlast its competitors.

"We've lost a lot of businesses here with the sterling steel mill. we've lost national manufacturing. we've lost some other corporations and we need businesses like this to survive," said Sterling resident Joe Gatz.

City officials agree with Gatz by saying the company's expansion means jobs and more for the town.  "It's a large investment in the project and I think there's a few jobs being created along with it but I think it also provides the opportunity for more jobs down the road," said Sterling City Manager Scott Shumard. Shumard explains that the fact the company is expanding shows how much it values sterling as a home.  "It shows that they are here for the long haul and they've provided a number of jobs for the community over the years," said Shumard. "Through global competition we've lost a lot of companies. To see somebody not only stay here and  thrive its big for us."

Residents also say it guarantees the company will remain in town for the long haul. "I'm really happy to hear they are expanding. I've talked with some and its really a good thing," said Gatz. "They're apart of the backbone of our community"

"We're not flushed with jobs and not good jobs. So Wahl Clippers have always been a reputable company and this should be good for somebody," said Sterling resident Duane Landers.

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