A Greenfield based parts facility for classic Studebakers is moving to Hope.

Studebaker International and Hope Town Manager J.T. Doane made the announcement Thursday night on the Hope Town Square.

"After eight months, I am very proud to stand here beside Mr. Jim Lime, the CEO, and join me in applause, for Studebaker International now calling Hope, Ind. their home," Doane said.

Doane said the process to bring Studebaker International here took eight months of due diligence, discussion, and strategic planning.

Susan Buck, a Studebaker International staff member, credited Doane for his efforts to bring the company to town

"He has been quite pivotal in getting us here and due diligence paid off," Buck said. "We felt very welcome in this town. Everyone has been so friendly to us and we thank you for that. I was driving around tonight on my way here and it is a nice, little sweet town you have here.You have so many beautiful homes and people who care about their yards. It just looks so nice. And we just wanted to thank you and we look forward to doing business here."

Doane said that the company will hold regular events on the Hope Town Square that will bring hundreds of Studebaker enthusiasts to the community and to patronize the businesses in Hope.

The company's co-owner Jim Lime said that the company already has three employees in Hope and plans to eventually have 11 to 12 employees here. The company will also continue to maintain a few employees in Greenfield, Shelbyville and South Bend.

The company serves Studebaker owners around the world and has about 25,000 subscribers to its catalogs and mailings. Lime estimated that around 350,000 Studebakers are still running worldwide.

Lime estimated that about 85 percent of the parts it ships will come from the Hope-based facility. Town Manager J.T. Doane said that would be about 50 packages a day, or 250 a week coming through the Hope post office. 

The company will also maintain a warehouse in Shelbyville for its larger parts such as sheet metal body pieces, Lime said.

The Hope facility is at 111 Aiken Street, the former Hawcreek Heritage Center of the Bartholomew County Historical Society. The society closed that center in 2016.