Japanese auto light maker Koito Manufacturing Co. is targeting more global market share and bigger profit margins, but first it has to take care of a problem: It is out of factory space.
Rising North American demand from customers such as Toyota, Nissan and Honda has maxed out plant capacity for Koito's U.S. subsidiary, North American Lighting Inc.
This month, North American Lighting said it plans to build a $22 million lighting factory in Muscle Shoals, Ala., to keep up the pace.
The plant, expected to employ 400, will be the company's fourth in North America. Since opening in Flora, Ill., in 1984 to supply Japanese automakers in the United States, North American Lighting has expanded to two other plants in Illinois. The move to Alabama reflects the recent shift south by automakers, said Daniel
Robusto, North American Lighting president.