With a catered lunch and guided tours, WESCO Distribution celebrated Tuesday (Feb. 26) the grand opening of an 80,000-square-foot expansion to its Manufactured Structures facility in Elkhart, Ind.

After 40 years of growth in Elkhart, the Manufactured Structures division of WESCO, a Fortune 500 firm headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pa., had found itself working out of six separate locations. The recent expansion nearly doubled WESCO’s capacity to accommodate some 4,600 SKU’s, and consolidated all its services under one roof.

Flanked by scores of aisles laden with products — the Manufactured Structures division specializes in not only electrical and plumbing products but a wide variety of other supplier and proprietary items as well — about 150 employees and supplier partners and other invited guests gathered for the afternoon festivities.

“Really, it’s an employee celebration,” Dave Auret, WESCO’s Manufactured Structures director and general manager, told RVBUSINESS.com. “It’s a celebration of, one, being in a new facility and, two, really just to recognize our employee base that we’re really proud of. 2018 was a great year in some respects and the RV industry was just phenomenally strong. So really it’s a ‘thank you’ to our employees, our partners, our customers.”

Auret added that the company remains “cautiously optimistic” about the year ahead. While recent months have been relatively slow in comparison to previous record-setting figures, Auret said WESCO wouldn’t have just completed its expansion project had it not been bullish on the industry’s future.

“We absolutely believe in the industry. Certainly we’re committed to this local economy, we’re committed to the community,” he said. “This, for us, is just a natural extension of us being here for the long term. It doesn’t really matter to us whether the industry declines 10% one year or is up 10% the next year. We’re here for the long haul. We don’t plan on going anywhere.”