Tradeshow Business Relocating to North Judson, Looking for Employees

Thermo Products
OTES is in the process of renovating the Thermo Products building west of North Judson to accommodate its growing business.

A Chicagoland-area business that is relocating to North Judson is looking for employees. Outstanding Tradeshow Exhibit Services, OTES for short, is moving into the Thermo Products building west of town on State Road 10. The Romeoville-Ill.-based company is a full-service designer and manufacturer of tradeshow exhibits.

The company will invest $1.2 million to purchase, renovate and equip the 74,000 square foot facility. Infrastructure-related renovations include installation of a new roof, plumbing and electrical systems and are under way. OTES will occupy nearly two-thirds of the facility and lease the rest to other area businesses. The additional space will allow for the expansion into carpentry and graphics workshops.

OTES plans to launch its Indiana operations early next year. Plans call for the creation of up to 15 Indiana jobs by 2019, with average salaries exceeding the Starke County average wage by more than 40 percent. The company is looking to fill carpentry, graphic design, sales, account management and maintenance positions. Prospective employees may apply at Professional Employment Partners in Knox.

The company produces custom tradeshow booths, which can be purchased or rented, for clients around the world, including United Kingdom-based Babcock International Group, Australia-based Noja Power, New Jersey-based Hutchinson Industries and Alabama-based Perkins Technical Services.

In July the Starke County Council unanimously agreed to a seven-year, $360,000 tax abatement on equipment and an additional 10-year, $665,000 phase in of taxes on real estate improvements for OTES.

At the time, Starke County Economic Development Foundation Executive Director Charlie Weaver said Thermo Products will continue its operations in North Judson as a result. The company was considering a move to a new lab in North Carolina, but now plans to sign a three-year lease in North Judson, according to Weaver.

Kemin Industries rents the back half of the building. They process a specialized variety of mint that’s grown locally and plan to expand their operations to include rosemary that’s grown in Texas.