Rhino Health LLC is expanding its U.S. production of nitrile rubber gloves. The manufacturing firm, under leading Korean rubber conglomerate Jungwoo Rubber & Plastic, has chosen Church Rock, New Mexico, on the Navajo Nation Reservation for its new $49 million, 124,000-square-foot manufacturing facility and warehouse. Rhino Health’s expansion to Navajo land will create up to 350 new jobs.
“I supported this project as Vice President and will continue to support it under the Nez-Lizer administration,” said Navajo Nation President-elect Jonathan Nez. “We understand the importance of partnering with the private sector to bring economic opportunities and most importantly jobs for the people. I am excited about today’s announcement and look forward to welcoming Rhino Health to Church Rock, Navajo Nation.”
The manufacturing facility will become a supplier of nitrile to be marketed to government agencies, medical facilities, the food industry and retail. Industrial development and glove manufacturing is a new avenue to employ Navajo people and diversify the Nation’s economy.
“We are proud to be establishing our first Nitrile Glove factory in the USA,” said Rhino Health CEO Mark Lee. “This will be the first of many ‘Made in the USA’ products coming out of New Mexico. With future expansions, we will be creating approximately 350 jobs in the region. I first want to thank Governor Martinez for her support – the LEDA fund and business-friendly climate make New Mexico a great place for our first on-shore manufacturing facility. I also wish to recognize Sharlene Begay-Platero of the Navajo Nation Project Development Department, Gallup Mayor Jackie McKinney, the Greater Gallup Economic Development Corporation team and Patty Lundstrom who were all instrumental in getting this project up.”
The international recruitment was supported by New Mexico’s closing fund, Local Economic Development Act (LEDA). The New Mexico Economic Development Department will invest up to $3.5 million in LEDA funds for the expansion.
“Rhino Health choosing New Mexico represents another successful Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) win under Governor Martinez’s leadership,” said Economic Development Secretary Matt Geisel. “This big win represents impactful job creation on the Navajo Nation and for rural New Mexico. It really highlights the power of our economic development toolbox and effective, smart collaboration across entities to diversify the Nation’s and the State’s economy. Welcome to New Mexico, we’re thrilled to have you.”
The news of Rhino Health opening a manufacturing facility in Church Rock came on the heels of the Governor’s announcement that international manufacturer Admiral Cable is moving to New Mexico and creating nearly 350 new jobs in Dona Ana County.
“I’m so proud to see another world-class manufacturing leader choose to invest in New Mexico,” said Governor Susana Martinez in a statement. “Since 2011, we have worked hard to make New Mexico business-friendly for manufacturers and we are again seeing the results of our efforts.”