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Protocase Announces First Phase of Expansion Into the USA

SYDNEY, NOVA SCOTIA - (NewMediaWire) - June 12, 2024 - Protocase Inc., leader in North American rapid manufacturing and prototyping for many industries including aerospace and defense, announces it has chosen Wilmington, North Carolina, as the location of the first phase of its expansion into the United States. The first phase of the expansion will begin this summer with the creation of an office presence in downtown Wilmington. Based on the company’s current growth trajectory, the second phase will involve standing up a manufacturing facility in Wilmington in the next five years to support Protocase and its subsidiary divisions, Protospace Mfg, Protomentum, and open-source data storage leaders 45Drives. All business operations currently on the ground in Sydney, Nova Scotia, will remain at full speed and continue as usual.

This strategic expansion enables Protocase and its companies to better serve its American customers across various industry verticals, providing a U.S. entity for easier purchasing. By having a physical presence in the U.S. The company can offer more localized support and services, enhancing customer experience and responsiveness. The Wilmington office will feature an American-born service team, capable of securing clearances to work with aerospace and defense industries, which are key focus areas for Protocase and its subsidiaries.

“We’re thrilled to finally be making the leap south of our border,” said Doug Milburn, Co-Founder, Vice President and Chairman of the Board of Protocase. “We’ve been very fortunate to grow into this expansion organically through finding a great market fit with strong products and service that our American and global customers have come to know, love, and depend on for their mission-critical needs. Upon completion of our thorough due diligence, we feel very enthusiastic about Wilmington in virtually every way. There is a palpable synergy in culture, work ethic, and coastal mindset with the city and its people, and we’re excited to plug in and add value to an already wonderful business community. The team at Wilmington Business Development was also fantastic to partner with and made a positive impact on our decision process.”

Wilmington Mayor Bill Saffo said, “The City of Wilmington is proud to welcome Protocase to the region as its newest corporate resident. We are excited about this fast-growing company’s new presence downtown as well as its strategic vision to eventually bring a significant number of manufacturing and other quality jobs to Greater Wilmington.”

Pending approval from the City Council, Protocase plans to move into the new City of Wilmington Skyline Center this summer. Skyline Center’s location and convenient access to cultural and lifestyle amenities were a key factor in the decision. Proximity to eastern North Carolina universities, community colleges and defense bases also gained the companies’ notice, as Protocase and its subsidiary companies place a premium on aptitude and attitude-based hiring, which is well-suited for exiting military personnel seeking private employment, and recent college graduates.

Partnering in efforts to locate Protocase and 45 Drives in Wilmington were WBD, North Carolina’s Southeast and the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina (EDPNC). Michael Best & Friedrich LLP and The Cress Group at Sun Coast Partners were among the local private entities providing Protocase with technical expertise and business services in support of the project. Conversations with educational institutions such as the University of North Carolina Wilmington and Cape Fear Community College also proved critical in the company’s search.

"Cape Fear Community College is excited to welcome Protocase to Wilmington and proud to partner with them as they establish their U.S. headquarters,” said Cape Fear Community College (CFCC) President Jim Morton. “This venture will create numerous job opportunities for our students and community members while utilizing CFCC for their training needs. This collaboration highlights a strong commitment to investing in local talent and enhancing the quality of life for all residents."

This is the latest in a string of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) announcements for Greater Wilmington. In February, Polyhose Inc., the India-based manufacturer of industrial hoses and fittings, announced plans to double the size of its Wilmington facility less than five years after establishing its first U.S. industrial outpost at Pender Commerce Park. Late last year, SANY America Inc., the U.S. subsidiary of one of the world’s largest engineering-machinery manufacturers, relocated its North American warehouse and distribution presence to Wilmington, occupying more than 530,000 sq.-ft. at Wilmington Business Park. In September 2023, German manufacturer Kessebohmer launched plans for a $30 million headquarters operation on U.S. Highway 421 in New Hanover County. 

“Protocase is another exciting foreign direct investment (FDI) story for Greater Wilmington,” said Scott Satterfield, CEO of Wilmington Business Development. “Global companies continue to be drawn to our strategic geography, growing workforce, modern infrastructure and pro-business leadership. We are excited about our partnership with Protocase and look forward to supporting the success of this impressive company.”

About Protocase

Protocase Inc. is a leading innovator in the rapid manufacturing and prototyping industries, specializing in the production of custom electronic enclosures and precision metal components for sectors including aerospace and defense. Founded in 2001, Protocase has been at the forefront of providing cutting-edge solutions for a diverse range of industries, including science, engineering, and technology. The company's unique mass custom manufacturing process is fast, flexible, and easy, offering precision sheet metal fabrication, CNC machining, and 3D printing services under one roof. With a clientele spanning more than 18,000 clients worldwide, including renowned organizations such as NASA, Stellantis, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Tesla, and Amazon Web Services, Protocase continues to set the standard for excellence in the manufacturing sector. Protocase is the parent company of 45Drives, a leading open-source data storage company, and to Protocase Mfg, and Protomentum.

About Wilmington Business Development

Founded in 1956, Wilmington Business Development oversees business recruitment and industrial retention for the City of Wilmington, New Hanover County and Pender County. A private, non-profit organization, WBD supports members, partners and allies through an array of technical expertise, leadership resources and value-added business services. For additional information, visit

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Jon Lindsay Phillips
Phone: 704.942.1557