At least 50 jobs to be created within four years
By Chris Fish
BREVARD -- The Economic Development Commission of Florida's Space Coast announced on Monday, May 20, an aerospace-related propellant services provider is expanding to the Kennedy Space Center.
United Paradyne Corp. is expanding to the Space Center in an effort to broaden its capabilities with government and commercial launch providers, while also expanding its research and development operations, officials said.
The expansion is expected to create at least 50 jobs during the next four years, with average annual salaries of $64,000.
"This is a great win for Florida's Space Coast," said Florida Gov. Rick Scott in a press release. "Last week, we learned that, in just one month, Florida's unemployment rate dropped from 7.5 percent to 7.2 percent and that we've created more than 330,000 private sector jobs in a little over two years, which is an incredible success. These new aerospace jobs mean that 50 more families will be able to pursue their dreams right here in the Sunshine State."
Officials said the company's capital investment is expected to exceed $9 million.
The state of Florida and Enterprise Florida joined the EDC, Kennedy Space Center, Space Florida, Brevard Workforce and the Brevard County Board of County Commissioners as partners for this project.
"Contrary to what some people may think, Kennedy Space Center did not close when the shuttle program concluded," said Lynda Weatherman, president and CEO of the Economic Development Commission of Florida's Space Coast. "In fact, with an eye toward a vibrant future of both commercial and government activity, NASA, the EDC, Space Florida and a host of essential state and community partners are working to ensure our iconic space facility remains a key part of our economy."
Originally, UPC, a California-based company, served as a propellant subcontractor at the space center from 1998 to 2008.
"We're obviously very pleased and excited about the opportunity to once again bring our operational and technical services to KSC, our nation's premier launch facility," said Joseph Hasay, UPC President and CEO, in a press release. "I would personally like to thank NASA, the state of Florida, Brevard County and the Economic Development Commission of Florida's Space Coast for all the assistance they have provided in order to make this happen."
Officials said the privately held company will lease the Hypergol Manufacturing Facility at KSC. The facility, which was scheduled for demolition, was saved by an effort made from the EDC, which worked with the Kennedy Space Center Planning & Development team to help preserve the building.
Officials said the building will be retrofitted to satisfy both legacy and new-use needs.
"Kennedy continues to work with the commercial community to find innovative ways to use and preserve our unique capabilities," said Bob Cabana, Kennedy director, in a press release. "With the support of premier organizations, such as the EDC, Kennedy Space Center is well on its way to becoming a world-class, multi-user launch complex. We look forward to our partnership with United Paradyne and its contributions to America's space program."
UPC plans to build a fuel manufacturing plant, which will allow it to offer aerospace fuels at significantly lower prices, officials said.
For more information, visit www.unitedparadyne.com.