WEST FARGO, N.D., May 2 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- DMI Industries, West Fargo, N.D., an operating company of Otter Tail Corporation (Nasdaq: OTTR), has selected a location for its third fully dedicated wind tower manufacturing facility. The additional plant will give DMI one of the largest annual tower fabrication capacities in North America. When DMI finalizes the required approvals and permits, the company will acquire the plant in the Tulsa, Okla. region. The facility features half a million square feet of production space and ultimately will employ up to 450 people. DMI expects to have it upgraded and customized by early 2008. When the Oklahoma plant is fully operational, DMI's annual combined tower production will support more than 3,000 MW of installed wind project capacity, based on today's tower and turbine technologies and designs. The Oklahoma facility is the second new plant acquisition for DMI in less than three years. The company acquired its Fort Erie, Ontario facility in 2005. That plant began filling orders in May 2006. DMI President Lars Moller said the additional plants are a strategic response to continental and global growth in wind development. "DMI has achieved success in Canada and across the northern tier of the United States thanks to strong demand," he said. "We plan to do the same things in Oklahoma and the south central United States that enabled that success. As for today, we're focused on finalizing this purchase, customizing the facility and serving the needs of our customers." In addition to strengthening DMI's strategic position in North America, the Oklahoma plant will give the company the ability to produce and deliver off-shore wind towers, which are larger than their land-based counterparts. It also allows DMI to more easily ship to expanding European and South American markets. The enhanced reach results from the Oklahoma plant's proximity to the Port of Catoosa on the Arkansas River, which provides access to the Mississippi River. From there, DMI can ship towers by barge either north to the Midwest or south to the Gulf of Mexico. "Demand for domestically produced wind towers is increasing rapidly," Moller said. "This new plant will allow DMI to meet that demand, and with closer proximity to south central and southwestern projects, we'll be lowering the cost of delivery to site and overall cost of wind energy development." DMI's headquarters and technology functions will remain in West Fargo, N.D. The Oklahoma plant will positively impact the company's West Fargo manufacturing operation, which fabricates and distributes production tools and parts for all of the company's plants, and likely will result in additional jobs there. DMI currently has 500 employees in West Fargo and Fort Erie, Ontario. DMI is a heavy steel wind tower manufacturer that also has capabilities to produce equipment for a wide variety of industries, including agricultural processing; ethanol production; oil and gas extraction, processing and refining; and water and waste water processing. For more information, visit http://www.dmiindustries.com. Otter Tail Corporation has interests in diversified operations that include an electric utility, plastics, manufacturing, health services, food ingredient processing and other businesses. Corporate offices are located in Fergus Falls, Minn., and Fargo, N.D. The latest investor and other information is available at http://www.ottertail.com.
SOURCE DMI Industries