A Finland-based tire manufacturer opened its new production facility in Dayton, Tennessee on October 2, providing a significant boost to Rhea County's economy.

Nokian Tyres' new 830,000-square-foot facility will employ up to 400 people at full capacity, which is four million tires a year.

Nokian Tyres broke ground on the factory in September 2017 and the company says it will be its third-largest production facility.

The facility is currently in the trial production phase and will be ready for commercial production in early 2020.

“The grand opening of the Dayton Factory is a key milestone in our growth journey,” said Nokian Tyres President and CEO Hille Korhonen. “Our hard-working multinational team has brought our company’s vision to life through relentless teamwork, and we’re eager to celebrate their accomplishment. The North American factory provides a premium relationship with our customers by making safe, sustainable products that are tailored to the needs of North American consumers.”

Tennessee Governor Bill Lee attended the grand opening ceremony.

“I’d like to thank Nokian Tyres for creating hundreds of quality jobs for our residents in Southeast Tennessee,” Tennessee Governor Bill Lee said. “I’m pleased that Nokian has chosen to invest in Rhea County, and I look forward to seeing the positive economic impact this new facility will have on Dayton’s economy.”