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Athletics company setting up hub here
Distribution center to serve East Coast
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Forsyth County News


A California-based maker of athletic equipment announced plans Friday to open a distribution center in Forsyth County.

The Collins Company soon will move into a 2-acre site on Weber Industrial Boulevard, said James McCoy, president of the Cumming-Forsyth County Chamber of Commerce.

The move represents a $1.5 million expansion for the Chino, Calif.-based company, which manufactures, distributes and installs athletic field accessories such as windscreen and protective netting.

McCoy said the project could eventually bring about 20 to 25 new jobs to the county.

Friday's announcement is the second major local economic boost of 2011, coming just weeks after Academy Sports Outdoors unveiled plans to build a 71,796-square-foot store at The Avenue Forsyth.

The store at the outdoor shopping mall on Peachtree Parkway is projected to create 150 jobs, plus some 300 construction positions, and $19 million in revenue.

A family-owned business, the Collins Company has been in operation for 37 years. Its customers range from high-profile athletic facilities to schools, clubs, homes and parks.

The company has hired an operations manager and will be expanding the local work force throughout the year. McCoy said the facility in south Forsyth will not focus on manufacturing.

"There will be some light assembly, some putting together of raw materials from other sites, but mostly distribution," he said.

According to the chamber, the local site will "serve as the company's East Coast hub for shipping and receiving."

Owner Larry Collins said in a statement that the Collins Company chose Forsyth County for due to "the warmth and friendliness" of residents.

"Everyone I met was very reassuring," he said. "Through the resources and help provided, the permit and licensing process was painless, and everyone I spoke to within the county offices couldn't have been more cooperative and friendly."

McCoy said the county is equally pleased to welcome the company.

"They're a great company. Any community would be very proud to have them," he said.

Randall Toussaint, vice president of economic development for the chamber, added that the project is "indicative of the economic vitality of our community."