Thurston Manufacturing Company announced this week that it is closing Simonsen Iron Works in Spencer.
The Thurston, Nebraska, company had been providing contract manufacturing services and producing its ChuckWagon Mobile Grilling Systems products at its Spencer facility under the Simonsen Iron Works brand name.
According to a press release, the company will merge its Spencer operations into its Thurston location.
“We are saddened to be leaving the community of Spencer, but want to thank all of those who worked with us to make this a success over the last six years,” Nick Jensen, president of Thurston Manufacturing company, stated in the press release.
Thurston purchased the Spencer facility in 2013. The manufacture is known for its BLU-JET Fertilizer Injection Application and Conservation Tillage Equipment.
Messages to Jensen seeking comment on Friday were not returned.
Companies express interest in employees, building
The company has been working with the Iowa Lakes Corridor Development Corporation and IowaWorks in Spencer to help affected workers find new employment.
“Our first priority is for the workers and their families,” said Kiley Miller, Iowa Lakes Corridor President and CEO. “And we express our sympathies to them.”
Miller said the Corridor and IowaWorks are working to create a plan to help the affected employees find jobs.
In the press release, Jensen stated the region has a strong labor market that should help lead to opportunities for former Simonsen employees.
“We have an incredible group of people at the Spencer facility that we enjoyed having as part of our Thurston family,” he stated. “We highly recommend any of them to potential employers as loyal, dedicated and hard-working individuals.”
Miller said other area employers are already expressing interest in speaking to the employees.
“They’re entering a vibrant hiring market and we’ve already had multiple inquiries from employers wanting to interview those employees,” Miller said.
He added that the Corridor has received “several solid inquiries” from companies interested in the building and creating jobs in the community.
Thurston Manufacturing Company filed for bankruptcy in January
Earlier this year, Thurston Manufacturing filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the Nebraska District of U.S. Bankruptcy Court.
The company filed documents in court on January 23. Court documents indicate the unsecured claims from the company’s largest 20 creditors who are not insiders total $1,235,715.
Area creditors among those listed with unsecured claims include State Steel of Spencer with a $152,375 claim, Linweld of Spirit Lake with a $20,959 claim and Silver Creek Machining of Ayshire with an $18,148 claim.
Correction: This article incorrectly stated that Thurston Manufacturing had recently cut positions at its Thurston, Nebraska, location. There were no positions cut. The article cited was from several years ago. The Signal regrets the error.