manufacturing

A Hot Spot for International Manufacturing

New River Valley, VA – “Winding north along I-81 you’ll find Virginia’s New River Valley, home to small-town communities and spectacular outdoor recreation along the mountains and the winding New River. The area’s charm and quality of life are among the attractions for international companies.

The New River Valley consists of Floyd, Giles, Montgomery, and Pulaski counties and the City of Radford. It’s also home to Virginia Tech, one of the Commonwealth’s largest universities and a leading research center, as well as Radford University, and New River Community College. As a result, a large percentage of the region’s 180,000 residents are between 18 and 24 and contribute to the pipeline of talent for area companies.

That pipeline has proven to be a powerful lure for a diverse number of international manufacturers. “There is a significant presence of international manufacturing companies in the region, including companies from Germany, Sweden, Brazil, Colombia, and Italy, among others,” explained Charlie Jewell, executive director of Onward New River Valley, the region’s economic development organization.

Among the notable successes is Phoenix Packaging. The Colombia-based plastic injection molding manufacturer has been manufacturing plastic packaging for the food industry in the New River Valley since 2010. In the past eight years the company has expanded three times, adding a total of 585 new jobs and $106.2 million in investment. The most recent expansion occurred in 2017 and created 145 new jobs and $48.7 million in investment.

Virginia Tech’s focus on providing engineering, manufacturing, and transportation research (not to mention skilled college graduates) to local companies has encouraged many global manufacturers to call the region home. That research capability compelled InMotion, a manufacturer of electric motors and drives for electric and hybrid vehicles, to create a home in Montgomery County in 2014. The company invested over $5 million to establish its first U.S. manufacturing operation in Blacksburg. The subsidiary of Italy-based Zapi S.p.A. employs 80 people there.

“Montgomery County has an outstanding combination of local talent and cost- effective facilities, as well as improved access to Virginia Tech and its world-class electric vehicle research,” commented Mike Jellen, general manager of InMotion US, upon announcing the investment. “Our Montgomery County location, with its attractive standard of living, coupled with InMotion’s groundbreaking product development, will continue to attract and retain the industry’s best people.” Virginia Tech’s Transportation Institute (VTTI) counts Volvo Trucks among its stakeholders. The Swedish company’s 1.6-million-square-foot assembly plant in Dublin, Virginia, sits on nearly 300 acres, making it the largest Volvo truck manufacturing facility in the world. The plant produces all Volvo trucks sold in North America. And while the company now boasts its own 1.1-mile Customer Experience Track for testing equipment handling, the company also works closely with Virginia Tech researchers. VTTI is supporting the global manufacturer in research on self-driving trucks, among other projects.

While transportation companies make up only a part of the international players investing in Virginia, transportation certainly is part of the appeal. Being close to the customer “takes complexity out of the supply chain,” commented Korona S.A. Chairman Friedrich Rather, when the Polish candlemaker expanded into the U.S. The company invested $18.3 million in a manufacturing facility in Dublin and created 170 new jobs in the process. Korona Candles is one of the largest scented-candle manufacturers in Europe and produces private-label collections for many leading companies. Its executives’ decision to add a second production plant in Virginia expanded distribution worldwide, and gave the company the benefit of local employee training services available through New River Community College. Targeted machine training is critical in operating the technology central to the candlemaker’s processes.

These international commitments help to grow local investments in the workforce and infrastructure. It’s a combination likely to continue to attract innovative employers, making it little wonder Zippia ranked the New River Valley the No. 6 top U.S. job market of 2018.”

Original article from Virginia Economic Review can be found HERE.

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Virginia’s New River Valley: Virginia’s New River Valley is an eclectic mix of interconnected small towns that each offer their own unique vibe and appeal. The region provides an abundance of cultural and social offerings due to the presence of three world-class universities, while retaining the charm and benefits of small town living. The NRV is home to a diverse and innovative business community with companies that range from high-tech startups to foreign-based corporations to specialty agribusiness. These organizations benefit from the collaborative spirit of our region and a loyal, highly-skilled, and educated workforce. The scenic beauty of the region also fosters a deep connection to nature, which is deepened by access to outdoor recreation and the preservation of our natural environment. It’s clear why Virginia’s New River Valley is “A Natural Fit.”

Onward NRV: Onward NRV is a public/private, regional economic development organization whose mission is to attract and retain world class jobs, investment, and talent in Virginia’s New River Valley. It’s also a movement where leaders from business, government, and higher education work together to promote the economic vitality of the region.

NanoSonic

Giles County Company Selected for VALET Program

Two-year export program provides resources to support international business expansion

NanoSonic, Inc., into its two-year Virginia Leaders in Export Trade (VALET) program. The VALET program assists companies in the Commonwealth that are committed to international exporting as a growth strategy. To participate, each business must meet both quantitative and qualitative selection criteria. Participating firms are chosen based on their dedication to growing export sales. To date, 335 Virginia companies have been accepted to participate in the VALET program.

“The VALET program, administered by VEDP’s dedicated International Trade team, is one of our most well-regarded tools for bolstering trade activity in the Commonwealth,” said VEDP President and CEO Stephen Moret.

“This world-class program has helped nearly 340 homegrown companies to increase their export sales, contributing economic growth and ensuring that Virginia remains competitive in the global marketplace.” – Stephen Moret

“The VALET program puts participating companies on the fast track to international business growth by connecting them with the necessary tools for successful international sales,” said Paul Grossman, Vice President of International Trade. “We are happy to welcome NanoSonic into the VALET Program and look forward to working with them over the course of the next two years.”

Currently, the VALET program has 45 companies as participants. The program provides participating companies with export planning services and assistance from a team of experienced international service providers to help meet the companies’ international business goals. These private sector service providers contribute essential expertise to assist companies in executing export plans and include attorneys, web designers, bankers, translators, accountants, and freight forwarders.

The Commonwealth of Virginia exports more than $35 billion in goods and services annually. Exports of Virginia’s products and services to the world are vital to the growth of the Commonwealth, supporting more than 257,000 jobs and generating $2 billion in annual tax revenue. VEDP offers numerous programs to assist Virginia companies with selling into the global marketplace and has a network of international market research consultants covering more than 70 countries around the globe.

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NanoSonic, Inc.

NanoSonic is a Research & Development company specializing in the design and manufacture of innovative materials, especially new materials that are currently unavailable in the commercial market. NanoSonic has developed a range of polymer-based materials and services for the aerospace, defense, and electronics industries, and its clients include the U.S. Department of Defense, Department of Energy, and NASA. For more information, please visit http://www.nanosonic.com.

Virginia Economic Development Partnership

The Virginia Economic Development Partnership was created by the Virginia General Assembly in 1995 to encourage, stimulate, and support the development and expansion of the economy of the Commonwealth. To accomplish its objectives of promoting economic expansion within the Commonwealth, the Partnership focuses its efforts on business recruitment, expansion and international trade development.

For more information on the VALET Program, visit http://exportvirginia.org/services/programs-grants.

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Virginia’s New River Valley: Virginia’s New River Valley is an eclectic mix of interconnected small towns that each offer their own unique vibe and appeal. The region provides an abundance of cultural and social offerings due to the presence of three world-class universities, while retaining the charm and benefits of small town living. The NRV is home to a diverse and innovative business community with companies that range from high-tech startups to foreign-based corporations to specialty agribusiness. These organizations benefit from the collaborative spirit of our region and a loyal, highly-skilled, and educated workforce. The scenic beauty of the region also fosters a deep connection to nature, which is deepened by access to outdoor recreation and the preservation of our natural environment. It’s clear why Virginia’s New River Valley is “A Natural Fit.”

MOVA

MOVA Technologies Partners with VT to Collect and Recycle Pollutants

Pulaski County, VA – MOVA Technologies is partnering with Virginia Tech to to test a filtration system that could have major implications for fossil fuel-burning plants.

MOVA Technologies recently received $50,000 from Governor Ralph Northam as part of the Commonwealth Research Commercialization Fund Awards to test out prototypes of panel-bed filters. The company is currently in their final stage of testing, which is taking place at VT’s Advanced Power and Propulsion Laboratory. If all goes well, the filters will collect coal fly ash, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide, and carbon dioxide and will be contained in a solid sorbent material for safe transport. These chemicals will then be resold to companies who need them for production.

Joseph Meadows, assistant professor of mechanical engineering at VT, will be analyzing the filters at his test cell lab over the next 6 months. The filters will be tested in variety of operating conditions with various containments to test its efficacy and identify which gases are going through the filter. Additionally, Stephen Martin, VT associate professor of chemical engineering, will play a supporting role as the expert in solid sorbents. Martin will be on hand to modify the solid sorbents as needed during the testing phase.

“We’re pleased to keep development of the panel-bed in Southwest Virginia. The majority of our capital investors are from this region, and the technology is designed for applications that could benefit Virginia’s economy, with a specific emphasis on Southwest Virginia.”
    – James Compton, Operations Officer at MOVA Technologies

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, this type of carbon filtration technology was not expected to be available until 2030. However, MOVA intends on bringing it to market next year. This system will take up less space as well as reduce costs compared to existing technology. Studies have indicated that the panel-bed could potentially reduce capital and operating costs by 15% and 25%, respectively.

Virginia Tech Knowledge Works conducted a market study that determined this filtration system has the ability to generate annual revenues of between $500 million and $1 billion. The proof-of-concept testing is expected to be complete by March 2020 and from there the company hopes to begin production. Steve Critchfield, MOVA’s president and CEO, wants to bring jobs to Southwest Virginia.

MOVA
“One thing I’m excited about is these fabrication jobs will pay enough to entice people from Southwest Virginia back who are now on oil rigs and pipelines. I’m hoping this will be a major step toward stopping the exodus of people from Southwest Virginia.” – Steve Critchfield

While there is still quite a bit of testing to be done on these panel-beds, MOVA is already researching ways to expand this technology to the agriculture industry helping to removing hazardous emissions and odorous smells.

Check out MOVA Technologies to learn more about the filtration system process and why this project is so important.

Photo Credits: MOVA Technologies

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Virginia’s New River Valley: Virginia’s New River Valley is an eclectic mix of interconnected small towns that each offer their own unique vibe and appeal. The region provides an abundance of cultural and social offerings due to the presence of three world-class universities, while retaining the charm and benefits of small town living. The NRV is home to a diverse and innovative business community with companies that range from high-tech startups to foreign-based corporations to specialty agribusiness. These organizations benefit from the collaborative spirit of our region and a loyal, highly-skilled, and educated workforce. The scenic beauty of the region also fosters a deep connection to nature, which is deepened by access to outdoor recreation and the preservation of our natural environment. It’s clear why Virginia’s New River Valley is “A Natural Fit.”

Onward NRV: Onward NRV is a public/private, regional economic development organization whose mission is to attract and retain world class jobs, investment, and talent in Virginia’s New River Valley. It’s also a movement where leaders from business, government, and higher education work together to promote the economic vitality of the region.

Volvo Trucks

Volvo Group to Create 777 New Jobs in Pulaski County Expansion

Company to invest nearly $400 million to expand heavy-duty truck manufacturing operation

Dublin, VA — Governor Ralph Northam today announced that the Volvo Group will invest nearly $400 million to expand its Volvo Trucks North America New River Valley (NRV) assembly operation in Pulaski County. Major components of the investment include a new 350,000-square-foot building that will ultimately house truck cab welding operations; an expansion of the existing plant to allow for further improvements to the facility’s paint operations and overall material/production flow; and a variety of equipment upgrades, including installation of several state-of-the-art dynamometers for vehicle testing. Volvo considered sites in multiple other states for the expansion project, which will create 777 new jobs within approximately six years.

“As the leading private employer in the New River Valley, Volvo Trucks has been a bedrock of this community for more than forty years and has fueled the regional economy. The company’s decision to grow its footprint in the Commonwealth not only recognizes the strength of our manufacturing sector, but also reflects the skill of our workers, the quality of life in rural Virginia, and the competitiveness of our business climate.”
    – Governor Ralph Northam

This announcement represents one of the largest capital investments in the history of Southwestern Virginia, and I am confident that this expansion will both prepare the NRV plant for continued success and solidify Volvo’s presence in Pulaski County for decades to come.”

Volvo Trucks provides complete transport solutions for customers, offering a full range of medium to heavy duty trucks. Customer support is secured via a global network of 2,100 dealers and workshops in more than 130 countries. Volvo trucks are assembled in 15 countries across the globe. In 2018, more than 127,000 Volvo trucks were delivered worldwide. Volvo Trucks is part of Volvo Group, one of the world’s leading manufacturers of trucks, buses, construction equipment, and marine and industrial engines. The Group also provides solutions for financing and service. Volvo Trucks’ work is based on the core values of quality, safety, and environmental care. The Volvo Trucks facility in Pulaski County is its largest in the world, with 1.6 million square feet on nearly 300 acres and 3,500 employees.

“Volvo’s historic investment in an additional facility and upgraded, state-of-the-art equipment at its Pulaski County operation signifies the plant’s future growth, and we are honored to further strengthen Virginia’s corporate partnership with Volvo Trucks North America,” said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Brian Ball. “With its access to markets, robust workforce, and pro-business climate, the New River Valley is a hub for manufacturers from around the world. This investment will position Volvo’s NRV plant for long-term growth and is a testament to the Commonwealth’s competitive advantage.”

“This investment will give our employees the tools they need to continue providing our customers the highest quality products,” said Franky Marchand, Vice President and General Manager of the NRV plant. “We’re very grateful to the Commonwealth of Virginia, Pulaski County, and the citizens in this community for their continued support of our business and our people. Creating more value-added processes through these investments is good for our employees, our plant, and our region.”

The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with Pulaski County, the General Assembly’s Major Employment and Investment (MEI) Project Approval Commission, and Onward New River Valley to secure the expansion for Virginia. The Volvo Group will be eligible to receive post-performance MEI custom grant payments totaling up to $16.5 million over 10 years, based upon achieving its pledged net new job creation and investment commitments. New job creation will be on top of the baseline employment level of 3,219 in place when project negotiations began in 2018. The company is also eligible to receive state benefits from the Virginia Enterprise Zone Program, administered by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development.

“The Pulaski County Board of Supervisors and the Economic Development Authority are most excited to partner with the state to comprehensively support Volvo Trucks and the exceptional men and women who work there with this monumental expansion project, and we are ever confident that their investment and job growth will go a long way to ensuring this company continues to operate and prosper here in our community,” said Chair of the Pulaski County Board of Supervisors Andy McCready.

“This announcement is one of the largest capital investments in the history of Southwestern Virginia and it says a tremendous amount about the confidence and trust the Volvo Group has in the Commonwealth, in Pulaski County, in their dedicated workforce, and in the economic development professionals that helped make this project possible.” – Andy McCready

“Volvo Trucks represents the largest private employer in the New River Valley, and I am proud that the Commission could support the company’s continued growth in Virginia,” said Senator Frank Ruff, Chairman of the MEI Project Approval Commission. “This monumental project will enable the company to add nearly 800 new jobs to its existing workforce, creating opportunities for citizens of Pulaski County and the region and further strengthening the Commonwealth’s position as a leader in automotive manufacturing. We thank Volvo for its commitment to Virginia and for being a key source of job creation and investment in our economy.”

“The NRV assembly plant is Volvo Trucks’ largest manufacturing facility in the world, and the company’s decision to reinvest in this operation is a significant win for the region and for the Commonwealth,” said Delegate Nick Rush, Vice Chair of the MEI Project Approval Commission. “With support from our local, regional, and state economic development partners, the company has been able to grow in Pulaski County for decades, and we are confident that this major investment will ensure that Volvo Trucks remains a critical employer in the New River Valley for years to come.”

“Volvo Trucks’ continued investment and creation of new jobs is a huge opportunity for the hard working people of Southwest Virginia and the New River Valley,” said Senator Benton Chafin. “I want to thank Volvo Trucks for their commitment to the region and seeing the value of reinvesting in the regional workforce and economy. Volvo Trucks is a critical community partner and with the creation of nearly 800 manufacturing jobs, their investment is another step forward in creating a more thriving and diverse regional economy.”

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Virginia’s New River Valley: Virginia’s New River Valley is an eclectic mix of interconnected small towns that each offer their own unique vibe and appeal. The region provides an abundance of cultural and social offerings due to the presence of three world-class universities, while retaining the charm and benefits of small town living. The NRV is home to a diverse and innovative business community with companies that range from high-tech startups to foreign-based corporations to specialty agribusiness. These organizations benefit from the collaborative spirit of our region and a loyal, highly-skilled, and educated workforce. The scenic beauty of the region also fosters a deep connection to nature, which is deepened by access to outdoor recreation and the preservation of our natural environment. It’s clear why Virginia’s New River Valley is “A Natural Fit.”

New River Valley Commerce Park

NRV Commerce Park Mentioned in Japan Times

The Japan Times recently mentioned the New River Valley Commerce Park in Dublin, VA.

Pulaski County is home to many international manufacturers, and the New River Valley Commerce park is ready to help locate even more. The Japan Times noted that Virginia is eager for Japanese partnerships.

FROM THE JAPAN TIMES:

While Virginia is home to many companies from around the world, the southwest region of the state wants to form stronger ties especially with Japan, according to Virginia’s First Regional Industrial Facility Authority, which is promoting its New River Valley Commerce Park.

Board Chair Mary Biggs explained: “Relationship-building with Japanese companies takes a lot of time and effort, but it’s very rewarding. It gives us time to understand how their companies do business, so we are better prepared to provide assistance when they locate here.”

View or download information about the New River Valley Commerce Park.

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Virginia’s New River Valley: Virginia’s New River Valley is an eclectic mix of interconnected small towns that each offer their own unique vibe and appeal. The region provides an abundance of cultural and social offerings due to the presence of three world-class universities, while retaining the charm and benefits of small town living. The NRV is home to a diverse and innovative business community with companies that range from high-tech startups to foreign-based corporations to specialty agribusiness. These organizations benefit from the collaborative spirit of our region and a loyal, highly-skilled, and educated workforce. The scenic beauty of the region also fosters a deep connection to nature, which is deepened by access to outdoor recreation and the preservation of our natural environment. It’s clear why Virginia’s New River Valley is “A Natural Fit.”

NRV job fair

NRV Job Fair Expo

DUBLIN, VA – If your company is looking for new employees, the New River Valley Job Fair Expo is a great place to look. The NRV job fair will help connect companies to highly-skilled workers in the following industries:

  • Healthcare
  • Manufacturing
  • Information Technology
  • Service Industries
  • NRV Job Fair

    Click to enlarge

    The event will be held at New River Community College in Dublin (Edwards Hall, Room 117) from 9am to Noon on April 3, 2019.

    Register at www.surveymonkey.com/r/NRVExpo19.

    For more information contact:
    Kimber Simmons
    540-357-1651
    kimber.simmons@vcwnmr.com.

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    Virginia’s New River Valley: Virginia’s New River Valley is an eclectic mix of interconnected small towns that each offer their own unique vibe and appeal. The region provides an abundance of cultural and social offerings due to the presence of three world-class universities, while retaining the charm and benefits of small town living. The NRV is home to a diverse and innovative business community with companies that range from high-tech startups to foreign-based corporations to specialty agribusiness. These organizations benefit from the collaborative spirit of our region and a loyal, highly-skilled, and educated workforce. The scenic beauty of the region also fosters a deep connection to nature, which is deepened by access to outdoor recreation and the preservation of our natural environment. It’s clear why Virginia’s New River Valley is “A Natural Fit.”

    Meld training program

    MELD Manufacturing Announces New Operator Training Course

    CHRISTIANSBURG, VA – MELD Manufacturing Corporation has launched a new training program that will give participants certification in operating MELD machinery. The 4-day courses will be hosted at MELD’s headquarters in Christiansburg, VA and attendees will receive both hands-on machine training and classroom instruction led by experts in the technology.

    MELD training course

    MELD Manufacturing Corporation’s patented and award-winning technology is a unique no-melt process for the additive manufacturing, repairing, coating, and joining of metals and metal matrix composites. The training course will review the history of how MELD was developed and provide participants with a deeper understanding of its material compatibility, application capabilities, and other properties.

    Participants will also be instructed on identifying required machine settings for the wide range of metals compatible with the technology and be taken through each step of the MELD process, from digital print file creation to deposition.

    “This program creates certified MELDers and delivers the capacity to integrate and innovate with MELD,” said MELD Manufacturing Corporation CEO Nanci Hardwick. “Our customers have raved about the elegance of the MELD process and the ease of training. We’re excited to offer more of these opportunities.”

    Class sizes will be very limited to ensure the maximum amount of hands-on machine time for each attendee. At the end of the sessions, participants will receive a certificate demonstrating their ability to operate MELD machinery.

    Visit http://meldmanufacturing.com/meld-operator-training/ for class details and registration for remaining openings.

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    MELD Manufacturing Corporation holds more than a dozen patents for MELD™ technology, an innovative process for additive manufacturing, coating, joining, and repairing metals and metal matrix composites. MELD™ offers the power to build parts in solid state, thereby avoiding the issues associated with melting. The technology is also open-atmosphere, meaning no special vacuums or chambers are needed for operation. The MELD™ equipment is scalable and can produce parts much larger than similar processes. MELD Manufacturing Corporation offers MELD machines sales, contract manufacturing, and consulting services. Learn more at www.meldmanufacturing.com.

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    Virginia’s New River Valley: Virginia’s New River Valley is an eclectic mix of interconnected small towns that each offer their own unique vibe and appeal. The region provides an abundance of cultural and social offerings due to the presence of three world-class universities, while retaining the charm and benefits of small town living. The NRV is home to a diverse and innovative business community with companies that range from high-tech startups to foreign-based corporations to specialty agribusiness. These organizations benefit from the collaborative spirit of our region and a loyal, highly-skilled, and educated workforce. The scenic beauty of the region also fosters a deep connection to nature, which is deepened by access to outdoor recreation and the preservation of our natural environment. It’s clear why Virginia’s New River Valley is “A Natural Fit.”

    VA Best State

    Virginia Is Business Facilities’ 2018 State Of The Year

    ~The Commonwealth secures BF’s top annual honor with a diversified and successful high-tech growth strategy.~

    TINTON FALLS, NJ – Virginia has been named Business Facilities magazine’s 2018 State of the Year.

    “Virginia snared more than $5.5 billion in capital investment for its top two projects, and its top five job-creation efforts netted nearly 28,000 new jobs in a diverse and well-executed growth strategy that has made VA a high-tech force to be reckoned with,” said BF Editor-in-Chief Jack Rogers.

    Rogers noted that VA has been a perennial contender for BF’s top honor due to its proximity to Washington DC, making it an attractive location for major corporate headquarters. In recent years, the Commonwealth has invested in fiber-optic networks that have made Northern Virginia the nation’s leading data center hub.

    “The 21st-century infrastructure that Virginia has meticulously installed will serve as a fertile root system that will nurture a lush forest of high-tech enterprises in the Commonwealth for years to come,” Rogers said. “Virginia not only is ready to compete in the emerging high-tech battleground—it shows every intention of dominating the field.”

    Crystal City, VA emerged last fall as a winner of the most coveted economic development project of the young century when Amazon awarded the city half of its $5 billion, 50,000-job HQ2 project (Long Island City in Queens, NY got the other half of the HQ2 mega-project, which was bisected by Amazon boss Jeff Bezos shortly before the site selections were announced).

    The ultra-high-profile HQ2 victory was the second volley in an impressive one-two punch that also saw Micron announce in August a $3-billion expansion of its semiconductor complex in Manassas, VA. Micron CEO Sanjay Mehrotra told Reuters the expansion would meet the burgeoning demand for more powerful computer chips that run collision-avoidance systems and other semi-autonomous automotive systems, a global market expected to reach $6 billion by 2021.

    “Our State of the Year honorees usually have one thing in common,” Rogers said. “They can walk and chew gum at the same time—which in this case means they’re upgrading traditional industries while accelerating emerging growth sectors.”

    New investments in traditional industries in VA in 2018 included paper and packaging leader WestRock’s decision to put $248 million into its paper mill and extrusion facilities in Alleghany County.

    Virginia also excelled as a prime destination for foreign direct investment, including an announcement from Press Glass, the largest independent flat glass processing operation in Europe, to establish its first Virginia manufacturing facility in Henry County.

    Virginia posted a strong showing in BF’s 2018 State Rankings Report, earning top-10 results in our Best Business Climate, Cybersecurity Employment Leaders, Drone Leaders, and Workforce Training Leaders categories, among others.

    Business Facilities is a national publication that has been the leading location source for corporate site selectors and economic development professionals for more than 50 years.

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    Virginia’s New River Valley: Virginia’s New River Valley is an eclectic mix of interconnected small towns that each offer their own unique vibe and appeal. The region provides an abundance of cultural and social offerings due to the presence of three world-class universities, while retaining the charm and benefits of small town living. The NRV is home to a diverse and innovative business community with companies that range from high-tech startups to foreign-based corporations to specialty agribusiness. These organizations benefit from the collaborative spirit of our region and a loyal, highly-skilled, and educated workforce. The scenic beauty of the region also fosters a deep connection to nature, which is deepened by access to outdoor recreation and the preservation of our natural environment. It’s clear why Virginia’s New River Valley is “A Natural Fit.”

    Onward NRV: Onward NRV is a public/private, regional economic development organization whose mission is to attract and retain world class jobs, investment, and talent in Virginia’s New River Valley. It’s also a movement where leaders from business, government, and higher education work together to promote the economic vitality of the region.

    MELD™ Technology Named Winner and Receives “Market Disruptor” Recognition at R&D 100 Awards

    CHRISTIANSBURG, VA – MELD Manufacturing Corporation’s patented MELD™ technology has earned a spot in the 2018 R&D 100 Awards, an international competition that recognizes the 100 most exceptional innovations in science and technology from the past year. MELD™ was selected as the single most disruptive new technology and received a special Market Disruptor award.

    MELD™, which was named an R&D 100 finalist in August, is a revolution for additive manufacturing and repair of metals. Traditional methods melt materials, introducing weaknesses. MELD™ is a no-melt process for metal, offering stronger, better parts. No melting also means users have the potential to work with unweldable materials. This freedom offers the ability to rethink how particular materials are used for various applications and in what combinations. Since MELD™ is highly scalable it is able to make much larger parts than competitive processes. It is also the first system of its kind for building large-scale 3D parts.

    “We are intent on revolutionizing advanced manufacturing and are honored for MELD™ to be recognized as the most disruptive technology in the world,” stated MELD Manufacturing Corporation CEO Nanci Hardwick. “We know from the overwhelming response to MELD™ that there is a huge gap in existing technologies to fill the needs of manufacturers in diverse industries.”

    MELD Manufacturing Corporation launched in 2018 and its immediate relevance to the manufacturing community was made evident at the 2018 North American RAPID + TCT conference and exhibition, an event boasting more than 6,000 visitors and 300 exhibitors from the additive manufacturing community. MELD™ was selected from this sizeable group of established industry leaders to receive the 2018 RAPID + TCT Innovation Award, a recognition of the most innovative new technology with industry-changing potential.

    MELD™ next won first-place in the Robotics/Automation/Manufacturing category of the Society of Automotive Engineers’ (SAE) Create the Future Design Contest. The contest, produced by SAE’s Tech Briefs Media Group, recognizes the year’s best in engineering across seven categories. MELD™ was selected from more than 800 entries from over 60 countries.

    “The defining characteristic of MELD™ is that it is a no-melt process,” continued Hardwick. “Melting metals creates problems. Since there is no melting during the MELD™ process, it’s valuable for a wide range of applications, from manufacturing stronger, lighter components for the automotive, aerospace, and defense industries to repairing large metal components that are considered unweldable and cannot be salvaged by any other process.”

    Long considered the elite recognition of new developments in science and technology, the R&D 100 Awards is now in its 56th year. The awards are competitively judged and exist to “recognize excellence and inspire innovation.” This year’s winners were announced at the annual R&D 100 Conference in Orlando, Florida.

    Visit www.meldmanufacturing.com for more information.

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    MELD Manufacturing Corporation holds more than a dozen patents for MELD™ technology, an innovative process for additive manufacturing, coating, joining, and repairing metals and metal matrix composites. MELD™ offers the power to build parts in solid state, thereby avoiding the issues associated with melting. The technology is also open-atmosphere, meaning no special vacuums or chambers are needed for operation. The MELD™ equipment is scalable and can produce parts much larger than similar processes. MELD Manufacturing Corporation offers MELD machines sales, contract manufacturing, and consulting services. Learn more at www.meldmanufacturing.com.

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    Virginia’s New River Valley: Virginia’s New River Valley is an eclectic mix of interconnected small towns that each offer their own unique vibe and appeal. The region provides an abundance of cultural and social offerings due to the presence of three world-class universities, while retaining the charm and benefits of small town living. The NRV is home to a diverse and innovative business community with companies that range from high-tech startups to foreign-based corporations to specialty agribusiness. These organizations benefit from the collaborative spirit of our region and a loyal, highly-skilled, and educated workforce. The scenic beauty of the region also fosters a deep connection to nature, which is deepened by access to outdoor recreation and the preservation of our natural environment. It’s clear why Virginia’s New River Valley is “A Natural Fit.”

    Onward NRV: Onward NRV is a public/private, regional economic development organization whose mission is to attract and retain world class jobs, investment, and talent in Virginia’s New River Valley. It’s also a movement where leaders from business, government, and higher education work together to promote the economic vitality of the region.

    volvo manufacturing day

    WDBJ: Volvo Invites Pulaski County Students to Experience the Future of Manufacturing

    FROM WDBJ – Middle school students from Pulaski County got a closer look at the manufacturing industry.

    Volvo opened its doors to them for National Manufacturing Day. Students got to see firsthand what careers in the industry look like. They also had some fun building mini Volvo trucks.

    The company says they want to show students that they can be successful right in their hometown.

    “We manufacturers spend a lot of time trying to convince suppliers, employees from around the world to come here to the New River Valley because its super cool, but we don’t tell our own kids. So I think this is a good time to do so,” plant manager, Franky Marchand, said.

    Watch video coverage from WDBJ.