HARTWELL, Ga. — A pet care company is investing $320 million and will create as many as 240 new jobs in a manufacturing facility and distribution center in Georgia’s Hart County.

Gov. Nathan Deal announced NestlĂ© Purina PetCare Co.’s plans Wednesday.

Purina’s vice president of manufacturing, John Bear, in a statement said the Hartwell site is “an excellent location” for the company’s first new U.S. factory in 20 years.

Bear says Purina plans to create the new jobs over the next five years and expects to close on the property later this year. Distribution center operations are expected to begin next year, with production to follow in 2019.

Purina currently employs more than 8,000 individuals in the U.S. Top brands include Purina ONE Dog Chow, Friskies, Tidy Cats and Pro Plan.