SUDBURY -- Two long-standing family-run Sudbury companies are receiving $663,945 in non-repayable grants through FedNor's Regional Economic Growth through Innovation Program to support projects to help grow the city's manufacturing sector.

The announcement was made over video conference Thursday morning by local MPs Paul Lefebvre and Marc Serre on behalf of federal Minister of Economic Development Melanie Joly.

"Advanced manufacturing supports good, well-paying jobs in communities across Canada, while producing the goods that the world wants," Joly said. "We’re working with you to support good jobs and help Canadian manufacturing come back strong."

Carriere Industrial Supply will receive $463,587 to purchase and install specialized equipment and robotics technology.

"This includes four robotic cells designed to increase automation and support the company in its efforts to produce and commercialize new products," FedNor said in a news release Thursday morning. "The funding will also support facility upgrades to improve product quality and reduce environmental impacts."

Dave Alexander, the controller for Carriere Industrial Supply said the money will help the company increase production and access new markets.

"This strategic initiative is a game-changer for our company that will drive future growth and create local jobs," said Alexander.

City Welding Sudbury will receive $200,358 to purchase productive and fabrication equipment to improve efficiencies and reduce emissions.

"The funding will be used to complete facility upgrades and purchase specialized ventilation equipment and modular fitting tables," FedNor said.

Robert Brouillette, owner and president of City Welding, said the purchase of the oxy-fuel and plasma cut table upgrades will reduce welding by 41 per cent using a bevel cut, increasing the company's day shift capacity.

He said the company has come a long way since his parents started the business in their garage in 1972, stating it now employs around 35 people.

Brouillette said the new ventilation system uses less electricity and natural gas, which is not only healthier for his staff but also reduces the facility's emissions.

While the skilled worker shortage continues, Carriere Industrial said it is adding 10 more welders and office support staff in the next year and City Welding will be looking to add five to ten employees.