3M will spend $468 million over the next three years to expand its healthcare manufacturing facility in Brookings, SD
Tim Reed, CEO of the Brookings Economic Development Corp., said people were relieved by the promise to expand the plant. When 3M decided to spin off its healthcare business, some wondered about the plant’s future.
“People understand that this plant is here to stay. We know they are going to stay in the community,” Reed said.
3M announced plans a year ago to spin off the $8.6 billion healthcare division into a separate company. The Maplewood-based company said in April that the division is on track to become a separate company by the end of the year. The other 3M will have a 20% stake in the new company.
3M and city officials have been talking about expansion plans for more than a year.
This year, the company will spend $158 million in Brookings to add 16 shipping docks, an 8,000-slot warehouse, 200,000 square feet of manufacturing space and lab and office space, according to news releases about the project.
Reed said 3M is the city’s third-largest employer behind the university and Daktronics, which makes scoreboards, LED video displays and digital billboards.
3M is in talks with the city and state for incentives, including tax increment financing and a rebate on city taxes paid on materials and equipment. Reed said the full value of those incentives has not yet been determined.
Brookings Mayor Oepke Niemeyer said 3M is a “valuable member of the community,” which is why the city near Minnesota’s southwest border is considering the incentives. It employs more than 1,000 workers.
“It is not uncommon for 3M Brookings employees to spend their entire career at the Brookings plant and retire with more than 40 years of service,” he said. “These employees contribute to the economic engine and overall well-being of Brookings and the surrounding towns. They are our family, our friends
, and neighbors, and they benefit our communities in countless ways.”
The Brookings complex is 3M’s first and largest healthcare manufacturing site. The company broke ground on the facility in 1969 and began production there in 1971. It has expanded several times, with the most recent addition completed in 2016, and is now 667,000 square feet.
It makes products ranging from surgical tapes, drapes and dressings to medical and food safety projects, according to 3M.
The healthcare division produced a quarter of 3M’s revenue last year.