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Austal USA again honored as Alabama ‘manufacturer of the year’


The Business Council of Alabama recognized Austal USA as the State’s Large Manufacturer of the Year at a June 20 luncheon ceremony. The award recognizes the full-service shipyard’s growth and continued excellence in manufacturing.

In 2005, Austal won the award for best mid-sized manufacturer of the year. Austal is the only repeat recipient of the Manufacturer of the Year award in the program’s 13-year history. Austal USA is only the second Mobile-based company to have ever received this honor.

With more than 1,300 manufacturing members and as Alabama's affiliate for the National Association of Manufacturers, BCA is a strong advocate for manufacturing. One of the council's first initiatives is working with the NAM's Manufacturing Institute to build in Alabama a coalition of business, education, work force and economic development leaders to develop a nationally credentialed high-quality manufacturing work force.

The BCA recognizes the state’s top manufacturers for their accomplishments annually with the Manufacturer of the Year award. Austal was chosen over other entries based on the following criteria, the shipyard says: financial growth, manufacturing leadership, market leadership, leadership development and workforce enhancement.

“Austal is both proud and honored to have received this award not once, but twice in Austal USA’s short, 12-year history,” states Joe Rella, Austal USA president and chief operating officer, in a company press release. “We are thankful for the hard work of Austal USA’s team of shipbuilders, engineers and support staff who are the ones for which we accept this honor.”

Austal USA is a full-service shipyard offering design, construction and high-speed vessel service and repair. The company says that as Austal USA continues to expand its service and repair capabilities, it is well-positioned for new business with engineering, test and trials capabilities, and a new waterfront facility all co-located on the Mobile Bay waterfront.

Austal is currently under contract with the U.S. Navy to build nine 103-meter JHSVs under a 10-ship, $1.6 billion contract and five 127-meter Independence-variant LCS class ships, four of which are a part of a 10-ship, $3.5 billion contract.

For the LCS and JHSV programs, Austal, as prime contractor, is teamed with General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems, a business unit of General Dynamics. As the ship systems integrator, General Dynamics is responsible for the design, integration and testing of the ship’s electronic systems including the combat system, networks, and seaframe control. General Dynamics’ proven open architecture approach allows for affordable and efficient capability growth as technologies develop.

These two contracts will require Austal to increase its Mobile, Alabama workforce to approximately 4,000 employees in order to fulfil the contract requirements. 



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