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Kuat Racks plans $3.6M building near PIC West

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Last edited 2:18 p.m., April 3, 2018

Kuat Racks is building a $3.6 million, 40,000-square-foot warehouse and corporate office near the entrance of Partnership Industrial Center West, 2240 N. Alliance Ave.

“We’ll be moving the whole operation,” said President Luke Kuschmeader.

Kuat – pronounced “koo-at” – makes vehicle racks that carry bicycles and other outdoor-sports gear. Production occurs in China and Taiwan, Kuschmeader said, while design, marketing, warehousing and wholesale logistics are handled locally.

Kuat Innovations LLC, the 11-year-old parent company, currently leases a portion of an adjacent building at 4520 W. Kearney St. from landlord Rich Kramer Construction Inc. for about $6,000 per month, Kuschmeader said. Around the corner, RKC is the project’s general contractor, and site work is underway.

The expansion plans have been in the works for about eight months, Kuschmeader said. The new building, funded by Guaranty Bank and designed by Arkifex Studios LLC, will more than triple Kuat’s space, he said, to keep up with undisclosed sales growth.

“The brand has just been growing, within primarily North America,” Kuschmeader said. “But we also have new international markets that are expanding: Australia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Costa Rica.”

Kuschmeader and company in 2016 began strongly pursuing the European markets.

Kuat’s local employee count is expected to grow to 40 from 24 over the next two years.

A groundbreaking ceremony is scheduled April 13.

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