XL Specialized expands headquarters

20 November 2020

XL Specialized Trailers, a national leader in custom, heavy haul trailers, is planning a $6 to $7 million expansion to its headquarters in Manchester, IA.

XL 70 HDG

A record sales year in 2019 has allowed XL to power through the Covid-19 pandemic despite what the market indicates as a 45 percent drop in the low-bed trailer industry in 2020.

The expansion will increase production capacity by over 30 percent, the company said.  The new development, which will be underway at the end of 2020 or early 2021, will add roughly 55,000 square feet to the north side of its current manufacturing footprint. Construction is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2021.

The expansion will also allow room to add many new positions to the company. XL Specialized plans to add 65 new jobs to the small eastern Iowa city of nearly 5,000 residents.

XL Expansion

The expansion will also allow room to add many new positions to the company.

“Increasing our space and adding more team members positions us to serve our customers better than ever before,” said Stuart Sleper, president and CEO, XL Specialized Trailers. “We will be well positioned for growth in the market and reduce lead times on our products.”

Currently, XL is working with the state of Iowa, in addition to the city, to receive zoning permits and tax incentives. The city of Manchester is holding a public hearing for an Urban Renewal Plan Amendment and would give XL a 10-year, 80 percent tax rebate if passed. The date for the hearing is set for December 14.

A record sales year in 2019 has allowed XL to power through the Covid-19 pandemic despite what the market indicates as a 45 percent drop in the low-bed trailer industry in 2020.

“We’re fortunate to have a diversified portfolio in the industries we serve with some sectors performing better than others,” said Sleper. “At the moment, we have a backlog and strong order activity. We also are fortunate to have the best dealership network in the industry and a loyal customer following. When the economy bounces back, we’ll be able to take advantage of our expansion in production capacity.”

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