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Colorado shop plans expansion

Jake West, president of Dubworks Murphy Mill, in Erie, Colo., recently secured government funding designed to expand his woodworking company while bettering the local economy. The company operations are currently being moved to Pueblo, Colo. through an agreement with the Pueblo Economic Development Corp.

The Dubworks' shop in Erie, Colo.

Dubworks is an architectural woodworking manufacturer established in 1986 that designs and manufactures millwork and cabinetry for commercial and residential projects. The client base extends throughout the Rocky Mountain region and surrounding areas, with a focus on educational, medical and public buildings.

In September, West signed a contract with the development authority worth $545,000 to purchase new machinery for the new location and West agreed to contribute $585,000 of his own capital for the expansion.

The contract stipulates that Dubworks will add 25 or more employees over 10 years. The company currently has 20 employees.

“I approached the Pueblo committee about the possibility of expanding. We went through the process of creating a full business plan and why the expansion made sense. I have to provide 25 jobs in the city of Pueblo for the next 10 years,” says West.

Hiring is currently taking place as West has a two-year window to increase staff, but he anticipates it will be complete by the end of 2014 as there’s a strong interest from the community. He believes that finding qualified help will not be too much of a challenge and has already reached out to area technical schools who’ve responded positively with students eager to work.

“Our approach is different from other cabinet shops. It’s more of a manufacturing shop and we don’t need a master cabinetmaker. So far, we have found a great mix of skilled personnel from the manufacturing and cabinetmaking standpoints with the engineering skills we’re looking for.”

As for increasing the volume of work to accommodate the new employee count, West is networking with general contractors who have developed relationships in the area.

“These contractors are focused on the new business side of things. One of the things we’re experiencing in Colorado is fewer providers of architectural millwork. This gives us the opportunity to tap into the southern side of the state with new contractors in addition to the ones we already service. That’s really what we’re looking for in brand recognition.”

City and county officials welcomed the new company to town with a gathering at the Pueblo Convention Center and lauded Dubworks for moving into a downtown building and providing good-paying technical jobs.

“Our team laid out all the amenities Pueblo has to offer a solid company like Dubworks and we’re glad to add their name to our cities diverse employer list. Dubworks’ announcement will certainly help us in our ongoing recruitment efforts,” says development authority board chairman Sam Krage.

Contact: Dubworks, 1065 Telleen Ave., Erie, CO 80516. Tel: 303-828-4335.

This article originally appeared in the November 2013 issue.

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