EGGER, one of the world’s leading wood-based materials suppliers for the furniture, wood construction and flooring industries, has started construction on its first U.S. manufacturing plant at the I-85 Corporate Center in Linwood, according to a press release.

Construction on the production facility began after the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality issued an air quality permit.

In July 2017, EGGER, a company headquartered in Austria, announced that it was putting its first North American facility in Davidson County, promising a $700 million investment and 770 jobs.

This ultramodern particleboard manufacturing plant is estimated to open in 2020 and will enable EGGER to better serve its customers in North America, improving access for architects, designers, wholesalers and furniture industry customers to EGGER’s wide range of wood-based products and designs.

Earlier this year, EGGER broke ground on its corporate office building. The building, which is scheduled for completion in early 2019, will include 80 work places for its North American office staff and serve as the base for all plant operations.

The facility will work with local wood suppliers, acquire wood byproducts from regional sawmills and work with a wide range of suppliers for additional services.

According to the press release, EGGER has already committed to its U.S. presence through hiring 50 employees and officially kicking off its Apprentice Training Program with Davidson County Community College. The program is a key part of EGGER’s effort to develop a highly skilled workforce for its new facility, which will include 400 direct jobs over the next six years.

“We are thrilled to kick off construction right here in Davidson County, and to see firsthand years of hard work and planning come to fruition,” said Karl Grasser, spokesperson for EGGER Group’s Lexington project. “As we continue to build our presence as a world leader in wood-based solutions, sustainability and the local environment continue to be our top priority. We appreciate the community’s continued support on this project.”