RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) -- A manufacturer in Catawba County has announced it is expanding its operation, saying it plans to create 162 new jobs and invest more than $3.3 million over the next three years in Hickory and Conover.

HSM, the new name of Hickory Springs, is a private, family-owned company which is a global manufacturer of integrated solutions and components for transportation, furniture, bedding and diversified markets. It employs 1,494 people in North Carolina.

The company will be investing in innovation with the launch of its new Corporate Innovation and Research Center and Foam Technical Center developing new products in new and existing markets.

Salaries will vary by job function, but the average annual wage for the new jobs will be $43,179 plus benefits. The Catawba County average annual wage is $36,223.

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