After 20 years and constant growth, Inovar Inc. recently moved into a 120,000 square foot state-of-the-art facility on Utah State University’s Innovation Campus, located at 750 East 1600 North in North Logan.
A ribbon cutting ceremony and open house was held recently to let the public see the new facility and get a glimpse of what they do.
The precision-electronic manufacturing company was co-founded by Blake Kirby in 1998 and started making circuit boards in a Hyrum garage with 15 employees. Within two years they outgrew their garage and moved to a 22,000 square foot facility in Logan. And now they’ve quadrupled their space with an even newer, more modern facility near Utah State.
Inovar’s president, Craig Rupp, joined the company in 2008 and has seen the company gain more significant ground over the past decade.
Rupp was a mechanical engineering graduate from USU and came to the tech company in Cache Valley with significant experience as a process and product development engineer. He worked in both national and international arenas, which have helped him to lead Inovar’s growth.
“We produce extremely precise, high quality circuit boards for our customers,” Rupp said. “We’ve been using surface mounted automated equipment for 18 years, but we still use people to inspect and finish the product.”
Not only has the company seen expansion in its Cache Valley operations, but in 2016 Inovar opened up a 68,000 square foot plant in Tacate, Mexico with 109 employees.
The company has 29 clients in medical, military/aerospace and communications industries.
“We do work for companies like Control 4 (a home security company), Clear One Communications, General Dynamics, and L3, to name a few,” said Rupp.
The Inovar workforce that began with 15 employees 20 years ago has now reached 450 in 2018.
Employees in the new facility wear smocks and don rubber gloves to keep their work environment clean from dust and other contaminants.
“With this new building there is room to grow,” Rupp said.
The building was built with employees in mind. Upstairs is office space with conference rooms and a glass wall with a view of the production area. Included in the building is a modern fitness center with cardio equipment on the first floor.
Rupp said one advantage of being located in USU’s Innovation Campus is the close proximity to the university. The campus is also home to other tech companies like the Space Dynamics Lab and Vivant (a home security company).
Rupp said, “Because we are near the university we have better access to students for internships, and recently-graduated engineers looking for employment.”
Cache Valley Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Jamie Andrus was at the ribbon cutting and said she was impressed with Inovar’s expansion.
“I’m really pleased to see they are growing and they have made such tremendous progress,” she said. “Not only do they have customers all over the country, but I was really pleased that one of their customers, Juniper Systems, was another local company.”
Inovar is one among a growing number of tech companies which are making Cache Valley their home.