Chantex Gets Approved

A local Wichita Falls company kept its promise to bring new jobs to the area and they are now seeking another expansion.

The Wichita Falls City Council approved $168,750 Tuesday for Chantex Manufacturing Inc. to put toward their $711,000 project.

The project was approved by the 4A Wichita Falls Economic Development Corp. last week. The funds will go toward purchase of equipment needed in their expansion of the fabrication and assembly of closure head to highly pressurize vessels for natural gas.

In December 2016, Chantex, a third-generation family owned business, was approved for funds to expand into a 7,500-square-feet building to manufacture these highly pressurized vessels. The $128,000 forgivable loan was used for the purchase of two 20-ton cranes. At the time, Chantex employed 12 people and promised up to 16 jobs total after expansion.

With business running even better than expected, Chantex bumped their numbers to 28 and to date employ 42 people. Additional employees with prime jobs means additional dollars that could be spent locally, pointed out Wichita Falls Chamber of Commerce & Industry retention specialist Travis Haggard.

 The additional 7,500-square-feet building will be where closure heads to the pressure vessels will be built. The WFEDC funds will go toward five 20-ton cranes and bridge assemblies ($87,000); two 80,000-pound cargo trailers ($35,750); one I-beam ($16,000); and cost of running additional electrical power ($30,000).

Haggard noted at 12 employees, Chantex had an economic impact of about $2 million for the area, at it was $7 million with 42 employees. With this new expansion, Chantex expects to employee an additional 20 people, making Chantex’s impact $10.4 million.

Josh and Ray Roberts, brothers whose family have owned Chantex for many years, said they are proud of their business and the equipment they make that is used in the transportation and filtration of natural gas. Unlike drilling or the supply end, piping the product is a steady business, they said. The Roberts brothers said they were grateful for the support from the city and hope to continue to grow and work with the city for years to come.

For each year that Chantex maintains 60 employees (their current numbers plus 20 additional jobs), this recent loan will be forgiven at a rate of 14.29 percent each year for seven years. At the end of the loan period, Chantex will own the equipment outright.

Given the company’s past track record of meeting and exceeding expectations for business growth and creation of new jobs, council said it was a clear and easy decision to continue to support this thriving local business.

Claire Kowalick, Times Record News