Huggies, Kleenex maker to move 250 high-paying jobs from WI to Chicago

GREEN BAY-APPLETON, Wis. -- Fox Valley, Wisconsin community leaders are unhappy with the news that 250 high-paying jobs are leaving their town for Chicago.

Kimberly-Clark, the makers of Huggies and Kleenex, has decided to relocate executive management, sales and marketing jobs to the windy city.

The move comes despite millions in concessions granted to Kimberly-Clark in 2018, WLUK reported.

Now, 250 people who work currently work out of this Kimberly-Clark facility in Fox Crossing have tough decisions to make about their futures.

"It wouldn't surprise me at all if some people say Neenah or Chicago, and they choose Neenah, because this is a great place to raise your kids, to bring your children up," said Mayor Dean Kaufert.

Mayor Kaufert said many of those affected likely live in Neenah and said he spoke with Kimberly-Clark officials shortly after the company announced the jobs were headed out of state.

"It was nothing about the area, strictly a business move to create more efficiencies I'm told," Mayor Kaufert said.

Kimberly-Clark declined an interview request, but in an email said this move allows the company to capitalize on strengths in both markets and positions its business in North America for long-term, sustainable growth.

The email also said all of Kimberly-Clark's manufacturing sites in Wisconsin will remain and are unaffected by this change.

In December 2018, the state and Kimberly-Clark struck a $28 million deal to keep its Fox Crossing manufacturing facility operating.

In a statement, Wisconsin Economic Development Secretary CEO Missy Hughes wrote the state agency is "reviewing its contract with Kimberly-Clark to determine how this decision affects the company's eligibility for job retention tax incentives."

"There is some consternation on my part saying, 'boy we really went to bat for these guys, but I'm ok, I mean, what are you going to do?' As long as they're making the minimum requirements of that and they assure me they are, the mayor said.

Kimberly-Clark was actually founded in Neenah, Wisconsin in 1872, but its world headquarters moved to Dallas in 1986.