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.”

Thomas Industrial Fabrication Relocating to Floyd County, Bringing 28 jobs

April 17, 2019 — Floyd, Virginia: Floyd County today announced that Thomas Industrial Fabrication is moving to Floyd, Virginia. The project will bring 28 full-time jobs to the County, with employees earning about $50,000/year on average, nearly double the average wages of people currently working inside Floyd County ($28,652 according to the Virginia Employment Commission.) The company is buying the former Dreaming Creek property from the Economic Development Authority (EDA) of Floyd County, which acquired it in the closing weeks of 2018.

Thomas Industrial Fabrication is a family business, owned by John Paul and Kelly Thomas and currently operating in Woolwine, Virginia. The couple has lived in Floyd County for over a decade and has family roots in the County.

“My father started the company in 1997, and I stepped into leadership about a decade ago, during the recession. We came out stronger despite the recession and have doubled our workforce in the past 10 years. Our motivation in purchasing this building is to give us the possibility for expansion, as well as to provide stability and create a more organized workplace by having all production under one roof. Floyd is a great fit for us in part because of the strong welding program at Floyd County High School, and the better transportation access.”

The Floyd County of Supervisors loaned the EDA funds to purchase the former Dreaming Creek property in December 2018, which is a 27,000+ SF building on nearly 11 acres in the Floyd Regional Commerce Center. The EDA retains the right to buy the property back at the incentive sales price if the property is to be sold in the next 5 years. The EDA’s purchase allowed the addition of deed restrictions to the property and reservation of access across the property.

Lauren Yoder, Chairman of the Floyd County Board of Supervisors said, “We are excited to welcome Thomas Industrial Fabrication and these good-paying jobs with strong benefits to Floyd County. And the company will add significantly to the County tax base. This underlines the value of strong Career and Technical Education training for our youth and adults. This is very important to employers including the Thomas’. We are delighted to welcome them to Floyd County.”

The new jobs will include welders, machinists, millwrights, fabricators, mechanics, engineers, buyers, foreman, and office support. Eight of the current employees, including the owners, live in Floyd County.

Jon Beegle, Chairman of the Economic Development Authority of Floyd County, added, “This is a great fit for Floyd County. One of our goals is to increase the number of good-paying jobs here, and this is another step in that direction. We have so many citizens with great welding and fabrication skills thanks to the fantastic welding program that Doug Thompson runs at Floyd County High School. John Paul and Kelly Thomas are already valued members of our community, and after 2 years of conversation with them about getting this business to Floyd, we are delighted that it is happening. We are very grateful and excited that they are investing in Floyd, and we look forward to their continued growth and success.”

With this deal and the recent leasing of the last available space at the Floyd Innovation Center, the County and EDA have no more business facilities available for lease or sell. They do have one pre-graded 9-acre site available, and they are developing plans for a new 20,000 SF shell building in the Commerce Center, which will also be dividable. The County is also reaching out to private developers to encourage development of more business and mixed-use spaces.

Media Contact:
Lydeana Martin
Economic Development Director
Floyd County, Virginia
lmartin@Floydcova.org
540-745-9300
Cell 540 267-4083

Thomas Industrial Fabrication is a DBA of Turbo Sales & Fabrication, Inc. solely owned by John Paul and Kelly Thomas

About Floyd County and the Board of Supervisors
Floyd County is located in southwest Virginia along the Blue Ridge Parkway and between Interstates 81 and 77. The County is a dynamic rural community with a population of 15,755. Floyd County is governed by the 5-member Board of Supervisors. The County Administrator is Terri Morris. The Board of Supervisors works closely with the EDA and staff to help businesses locate or expand in Floyd County. www.floydcova.org.

About The Floyd County Economic Development Authority
The Floyd County Economic Development Authority (EDA) is comprised of 7 community volunteers. Floyd County’s Community and Economic Development staff, Lydeana Martin and Tabitha Hodge, serve as staff to the EDA. Together they work to find solutions to improve the local economy by offering programs that support existing businesses, start-up businesses and by attracting new “right-fit” businesses to the community. Learn More: www.yesfloydva.org. To learn more about visiting, see www.VisitFloydVA.com

1901 Group Expansion

1901 Group Adds 580 Jobs in Blacksburg

RICHMOND — Governor Ralph Northam today announced that 1901 Group, a trusted provider of IT services for the public and private sectors, will invest $4 million to expand its Enterprise IT Operations Center headquartered in Montgomery County (Blacksburg, VA) and its corporate offices in Fairfax County. The company will receive funding for the project from the Virginia Jobs Investment Program (VJIP), which will support the addition of 580 new jobs in Montgomery County and 225 new jobs in Fairfax County by 2021.

“The decision by 1901 Group to expand its operations in Montgomery and Fairfax Counties is a strong testament to Virginia’s ability to compete for major projects that will result in tremendous opportunity for citizens across the Commonwealth,” said Governor Ralph Northam. “With one of the largest technology talent pools in the nation, Virginia’s thriving IT industry promises high anticipated growth and upward mobility for employees. We thank 1901 Group for creating more than 800 new 21st-century jobs and for contributing to our efforts to ensure that all Virginians, no matter who they are or where they live, have access to a promising future.”

1901 Group is a market leader in innovative public sector IT services. The company delivers cloud, cyber security, and enterprise scale-managed services to transition customers from traditional on-premise IT infrastructure and support models to hybrid cloud solutions that improve performance and reduce costs. Named one of “Virginia’s Fantastic 50” by the Virginia Chamber of Commerce, 1901 Group has experienced a substantial increase in the use of its services by the federal government, with anticipated high growth in the future. The company will expand its Enterprise IT Operations Center in Montgomery County to 40,000 square feet, augmenting its ability to hire, train, educate, and retain a cloud-centric engineering workforce to provide 24-7 support of end users, complex IT infrastructure environments, and mission critical systems.

“Both the New River Valley and Northern Virginia represent the very best of what Virginia has to offer, and we are proud that 1901 Group has experienced such extraordinary growth at its locations in Montgomery and Fairfax Counties,” said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Brian Ball. “The company will continue to benefit from an acclaimed business environment and premier higher education institutions training the next generation of IT professionals. 1901 Group is the ideal candidate for support from the Virginia Jobs Investment Program, which has provided a skilled talent pipeline to growing corporate partners for more than half a century.”

“1901 Group’s revenue in the federal market has increased by 30x in the last six years,” noted CEO of 1901 Group Sonu Singh. “Much of this growth can be attributed to operating in the Fairfax region, which has a strong technology focus and great access to talent. Our business model also leverages the talent, the quality of life, and the advantageous cost of living in Montgomery County. Our goal of creating high-quality IT jobs clustered in rural areas is the best way to improve quality and performance for the federal government especially as the pace of cloud adoption increases. Our revenue and headcount growth are proof that this is the next big trend in rural IT jobs.”

The Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP) assisted Montgomery County and the Fairfax County Economic Development Authority with their efforts to secure the project for Virginia. VEDP will support 1901 Group’s recruitment activities through VJIP, a program that provides consultative services and funding to companies creating new jobs or experiencing technological change to support employee training activities. As a business incentive supporting economic development, VJIP reduces the human resource costs of new and expanding companies. VJIP is state-funded, demonstrating Virginia’s commitment to enhancing job opportunities for its citizens.

“This is yet another example of how Montgomery County is not only a great place to live, but also a great place for desirable and expanding job opportunities in our software development cluster,” said Chair of the Montgomery County Board of Supervisors Chris Tuck. “1901 Group joins a series of companies in our area that are growing, and we are glad they have chosen to expand their operations in Montgomery County.”

“1901 Group is a great example of a company leveraging new technologies in innovative ways, and I am delighted that the firm is taking advantage of our technology-focused workforce to expand its corporate operations here,” said Gerald L. Gordon, Ph.D., president and CEO of the Fairfax County Economic Development Authority.

“The New River Valley has attracted many IT companies, and the announcement today of 1901 Group’s ongoing development in this region is one more testament to increased demand for IT services and cybersecurity management,” said Senator John Edwards. “As more industries migrate data to cloud-based platforms, Virginia must continue preparing a workforce to build and maintain the IT infrastructure of tomorrow.”

“1901 Group’s expansion in Fairfax County is an exciting growth move for them and a real benefit for our area,” stated Senator Janet Howell. “I commend the Fairfax County Economic Development Authority’s efforts to secure this expansion for Northern Virginia. Funding from the Virginia Jobs Investment Program will benefit both 1901 Group and the new employees who are hired for the data center expansion.”

“Having economic development partnerships with businesses such as 1901 Group remains a top priority for the Commonwealth,” said Delegate L. Nick Rush. “With funding from VJIP, the expansion of 1901 Group in Montgomery County will continue to help establish Virginia as a global IT leader while providing cost-effective services that are researched, developed, and maintained right here, in our local community. Future job opportunities that this expansion will provide are both welcome and encouraging for our region’s fast-paced and ever-growing technology sector.”

“I am pleased that this economic development partnership will benefit my region of the Commonwealth as well as another,” said Delegate Kenneth Plum. “It will provide job opportunities for Fairfax and Montgomery Counties. 1901 Group’s significant investment and job creation is truly a win for everyone.”

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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.

JBR Vineyards & Winery Opens New Tasting Room

~ JBR Tasting Room Now Open! ~

FROM GILES COUNTY, VA – Tucked in the mountains of Giles County, JBR Vineyards & Winery has been developing their grape vines since 2006. The first bottle of Giles County wine was sold on May 28, 2015. Two varieties of classic wine grapes (vitis vinifera) are exclusively grown: Pinot Noir for red wine and Riesling for white wine. Jessee Ring was born and raised in Narrows, Virginia He graduated from Narrows High School in 1965 and then attended the University of Virginia where he received a Bachelor’s Degree in Electrical Engineering with Distinction in 1969. He received a Master’s Degree in Electrical Engineering in 1971 from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. His work in the computer and software field took him to Pennsylvania where he lived for ten years, Salt Lake City, Utah, and finally to California where he lived for twenty years. He fulfilled various technical and management roles and ultimately became Vice President of a small software company in Silicon Valley. In 2005, he and his wife decided that all the conditions were right to fulfill a life-long dream of moving back east. Since moving back to Virginia in 2005, Jessee has changed careers. He left the high tech world and started a vineyard that is now in full production and is licensed as a Virginia Farm Winery (JBR Vineyards & Winery).

In December 2017 Governor McAuliffe announced that JBR with the support of the Giles County Industrial Development Authority, would receive an Agricultural and Forestry Industries Development Fund award to expand the winery to 14 tons of grapes and build a tasting room onsite of their Staffordsville winery.

“We are excited that VDACS and the Governor’s Office continue to promote and support new business opportunities like JBR Vineyards,” said Chris McKlarney, Giles County Administrator. “Giles County is pleased to join with our Commonwealth of Virginia partners in the effort to expand our economy and create new jobs for our citizens. Agriculture is important to Giles County and the addition of a vineyard and winery will provide additional tourism opportunities for visitors to Virginia’s Mountain Playground.”

That work has been completed and the ribbon is ready to be cut at the Grand Opening on Wednesday, May 30th at 2pm. Congressman Morgan Griffith is scheduled to attend and make comments along with VDACS representatives and Giles County Administration speakers. The short ceremony will be followed by a toast and ribbon cutting. Live music will also be on hand to enjoy the afternoon in Giles County. Directions to the vineyard are as follows 1360 Springdale Rd — Route 100, Eggleston turn off, right on Bear Spring Rd, Right on Springdale Rd, go 3 miles. There will be signs directing traffic from Route 100. Please be advised this location is not GPSable.

Other upcoming events at the winery include a Mountains of Music Homecoming Cultural Experience on June 9th. More details on JBR can be found on their Facebook page. Other releases on JBR can be found on our Giles County website.

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Giles County, Virginia is located in Southwest Virginia approximately 40 minutes south of Roanoke and just west of Blacksburg and Virginia Tech. With easy access to the New River, world class dining and lodging properties, and historical attractions for the entire family, Giles offers adventure in Virginia’s Mountain Playground™. Come find your playground at our Visitors Center located at 203 N Main Street, Pearisburg, VA 24134 or find us online at gilescounty.org or by calling 540-921-2079. For interviews or onsite visits, please contact Cora Gnegy, Tourism Marketing Director. We can arrange and assist with any media needs. For more information about planning your visit to Giles County or about activities and events, please visit www.gilescounty.org or contact us at tourism@gilescounty.org.

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Virginia’s New River Valley: For those searching for an inspiring place to live and do business, Virginia’s New River Valley provides both an eclectic small town atmosphere and an innovative, collaborative business community with a loyal, highly skilled, and educated workforce. Offering the best of all worlds – magnificent mountains, cutting-edge research, arts, entertainment, and education – it’s 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.

Mahindra Group Expands to the NRV in the VT Corporate Research Center

BLACKSBURG, VA – Mahindra Group, one of the world’s largest farm equipment production companies is expanding to Virginia’s New River Valley with an office at the Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center.

Mahindra Group NRV: Mahindra group expands to Virginia's New River Valley in the VTCRC

The expansion was announced yesterday on-site at the VTCRC. It is now the largest internationally headquartered tenant in the park.

“Mahindra Group strives to be at the forefront of technology and innovation with a view to improve lives of our customers,” said Rajesh Jejurikar, President of Mahindra & Mahindra’s Farm Equipment Sector. “We believe that leveraging the ecosystem of a leading academic institution such as Virginia Tech will foster innovation and enable us to stay ahead globally.”

“The Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center offers the perfect setting for both research and testing,” said Aravind S. Bharadwaj, CTO for Mahindra’s Farm Equipment Sector in Chennai, India. “The commonwealth’s rural communities married with Virginia Tech’s research expertise were the winning factors in narrowing down to Virginia Tech.”

Read more from Virginia Tech.

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Virginia’s New River Valley: For those searching for an inspiring place to live and do business, Virginia’s New River Valley provides both an eclectic small town atmosphere and an innovative, collaborative business community with a loyal, highly skilled, and educated workforce. Offering the best of all worlds – magnificent mountains, cutting-edge research, arts, entertainment, and education – it’s 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.

Crenshaw Lighting Expands VIrginia's New River Valley

Crenshaw Lighting Expanding in Floyd County

FROM FLOYD COUNTY, VA – Floyd County today announced that Crenshaw Lighting is expanding in Floyd, Virginia. The project will create 56 jobs, for a total of 120 jobs. The Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission approved a $100,000 Tobacco Regional Opportunity Fund grant and $50,000 loan for this project.

Crenshaw Lighting Expands, Virginia's New River Valley

Tobacco Commission Executive Director, Evan Feinman said, “Supporting existing businesses when they wish to expand is an important part of the Tobacco Commission’s mission. Crenshaw has proven to be a valuable community partner and I am glad the Commission approved these funds to help them grow their business in Floyd County.”

Crenshaw Lighting is an award-winning decorative custom lighting and historic restoration lighting manufacturer that has been crafting exceptional lighting since 1957. Dedication to this tradition, collaboration with world-class lighting specifiers, and pioneering leading edge technology solutions in decorative lighting remain Crenshaw’s guiding principles in the 21st century.

Patrick Daley, owner of Crenshaw Lighting, said “Our work calls for great skill, complexity, and execution on a monumental scale. We are excited to be expanding our work in Floyd where the craftsmanship is exceptional. The facility we are renovating for expansion will be a showcase for our work and the community.”

Floyd County, in cooperation with the Economic Development Authority of Floyd County, will be providing a $500,000 loan to help expedite the renovation and job creation.

Lauren Yoder, Chairman of the Floyd County Board of Supervisors, said, “We are delighted to help support the expansion of Crenshaw Lighting. “We are very proud that the lighting that adorns the US Supreme Court, US Capitol, state houses, universities, and historic buildings around the country, were custom made right here in Floyd County. We look forward to their growth and continued success.”

The new jobs will include shop workers doing welding, machining and buffing, as well as designers and engineers. The wages will be significantly above the average local wage of $13.80/hour.

Jon Beegle, Chairman of the Economic Development Authority of Floyd County, added, “Crenshaw Lighting works closely with our high school Career and Technical Education programs, like welding and machining, which helps students and the company. And they continue to train individuals on-the-job to help them become master craftsmen. Crenshaw Lighting demonstrates our strengths in Floyd County— creativity, innovation and craftsmanship. Supporting the businesses that are already part of our community is a high priority for us. We are very grateful and excited that they are investing more and growing here in Floyd.”

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Media Contact: Lydeana Martin
Economic Development Director
Floyd County, Virginia
lmartin@Floydcova.org
540-745-9300

About Floyd County and the Board of Supervisors

Floyd County is located in southwest Virginia along the Blue Ridge Parkway and between Interstates 81 and 77. The County is a dynamic rural community with a population of 15,755. Floyd County is governed by the 5-member Board of Supervisors. The County Administrator is Terri Morris. The Board of Supervisors works closely with the EDA and staff to help businesses locate or expand in Floyd County. www.floydcova.org.

About The Floyd County EDA

The Floyd County Economic Development Authority (EDA) is comprised of 7 community volunteers. Floyd County’s Community and Economic Development Director, Lydeana Martin, serves as lead staff to the EDA. Together they work to find solutions to improve the local economy by offering programs that support existing businesses, start-up businesses and by attracting new “right-fit” businesses to the community.

Learn More: www.yesfloydva.org.
To learn more about visiting, see www.VisitFloydVA.com.

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Virginia’s New River Valley: For those searching for an inspiring place to live and do business, Virginia’s New River Valley provides both an eclectic small town atmosphere and an innovative, collaborative business community with a loyal, highly skilled, and educated workforce. Offering the best of all worlds – magnificent mountains, cutting-edge research, arts, entertainment, and education – it’s 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.

Aeroprobe MELD logo, Virginia's New River Valley

Aeroprobe Corporation Commercializes MELD Technology

~Machine sales and manufacturing services will be managed by newly-announced subsidiary, MELD Manufacturing Corporation~

FROM MONTGOMERY COUNTY, VA – On Thursday, April 12, 2018, Aeroprobe Corporation announced MELD, its proprietary manufacturing technology, is moving into a new phase of commercialization that includes the spinout of MELD Manufacturing Corporation. These announcements come after more than a decade of research and development for the MELD process.

“Our technology is truly unique,” noted MELD CEO Nanci Hardwick. “We identified an area in the additive manufacturing industry that could be improved upon and put a lot of time and effort into making it happen. The MELD process is a game changer in the additive manufacturing field and beyond.”

Aeroprobe MELD logo, a revolutionary manufacturing process for metal created at Aeroprobe in Virginias New River Valley

The company holds more than a dozen patents for MELD, a process that can be used for a wide range of materials, including metal powders and rods. It can also be used with metal chips that would normally be discarded in other processes, making it a viable option for a green alternative.

“What sets us apart from other technologies is that we aren’t melting,” explained Additive Manufacturing Manager Chase Cox, “When you melt, you introduce weakness and other issues. By taking the material up to a point where it is malleable but not melted, we end up with properties that meet or exceed similar processes and, in some cases, even those of the original material.”

While a few other processes offer the ability to work with materials without melting, MELD is further differentiated by being open atmosphere, meaning no special chambers or vacuums are needed to operate a MELD machine.

“Being open atmosphere means less equipment and fewer headaches,” continued Cox, “From a manufacturing standpoint, it also means that MELD isn’t limited in the size of the parts it can make. Compared to similar processes, we can make parts that are not only bigger, but also superior in quality and material options.”

Beyond additive manufacturing, the MELD process can be used to repair, coat, and join materials. The novelty of the technology also means that welding previously unweldable materials is a possibility.

“I was very excited the first time I saw the MELD technology,” notes Paul Allison, Assistant Professor at the University of Alabama, which already owns a MELD machine. “It was and still is obvious that MELD provides a breakthrough in manufacturing technology that overcomes the technical barriers of fusion-based processes. That innovation is why I was eager to purchase a MELD machine and to work with the MELD team to pioneer research for this technology,” stated Allison.

The MELD process promises to innovate a number of industries, from automotive and aerospace to defense and turbomachinery. MELD Manufacturing will offer machine sales in addition to contract manufacturing and consulting services.

“This is just another example of the technical innovations that are occurring in the New River Valley,” said Chris Tuck, Chair, Montgomery County Board of Supervisors. “The Montgomery County Board of Supervisors continues to support our local businesses in growing and making world-wide impacts,” said Tuck.

“I’m both proud of and excited about this home-grown technology in Montgomery County,” said Vice Chair of the Montgomery County Board of Supervisors, April DeMotts. “It is clearly evident that the impact of this cutting-edge technology will reach far beyond Virginia,” said DeMotts.

About MELD Manufacturing Corporation

Established in 2018, MELD Manufacturing Corporation holds more than a dozen patents for MELD and facilitates contract manufacturing and consulting services as well as MELD machine sales. MELD is an innovative and unique patented technology that revolutionizes the additive manufacturing industry. MELD is the first process to give you the power to build 3D parts in solid state, producing better quality, scalable parts faster using a variety of materials and metals. Learn more at www.meldmanufacturing.com.

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Virginia’s New River Valley: For those searching for an inspiring place to live and do business, Virginia’s New River Valley provides both an eclectic small town atmosphere and an innovative, collaborative business community with a loyal, highly skilled, and educated workforce. Offering the best of all worlds – magnificent mountains, cutting-edge research, arts, entertainment, and education – it’s 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.

Governor Northam Announces 60 New Jobs in Giles County

~Cogar Manufacturing to invest $2.5 million to relocate and expand manufacturing operation~

RICHMOND, VA – Governor Ralph Northam today announced that Cogar Manufacturing, a manufacturer of material handling equipment primarily for the natural resource industries, will invest $2.5 million to relocate its manufacturing operation from Beckley, West Virginia, to the former Caterpillar facility in Giles County. The company has expanded its manufacturing capabilities with the addition of a patented water removal and feeder system for coke producers, increasing Cogar’s customer base and requiring the expansion of its manufacturing footprint. The project will create 60 new jobs.

“Cogar Manufacturing’s decision to move operations from West Virginia to Giles County and expand production is a great testament to the Commonwealth’s competitive operating costs, extensive transportation network, and robust workforce,” said Governor Northam. “The New River Valley’s manufacturing community is booming, and Cogar will be a strong addition. I am thrilled that this new addition will revitalize a vacant facility and create 60 quality jobs in the local economy. We are proud to add another impressive manufacturer to the Commonwealth’s corporate roster, and look forward to Cogar’s future success in Giles County.”

Cogar Manufacturing was established in 1979 and has grown throughout the years, thanks to the dedication of its employees and the help of its customers. Headquartered in Beckley, West Virginia, the company has over 100 years of combined experience manufacturing new equipment and rebuilding existing equipment. Cogar manufactures crushing machines and materials handling and conveying equipment, primarily for the natural resource industries, but has been expanding into refineries and barge and ship transloading. The company has manufacturing facilities in West Virginia and Illinois and a sales and operations office in Texas.

“We are thrilled to welcome Cogar Manufacturing to Giles County and the Commonwealth, and look forward to building a successful partnership,” said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Esther Lee. “Cogar will move into the former Caterpillar facility in Pearisburg, bringing 60 critical employment opportunities back to the region. Virginia’s robust manufacturing workforce of over 240,000 guarantees a solid pipeline of talent for years to come, and we are confident that Cogar Manufacturing will be pleased with its decision to relocate to the New River Valley and the Commonwealth.”

John Cogar, Vice President of Cogar Manufacturing, expressed gratitude to the Commonwealth and to Giles County for the support offered to Cogar in making this decision to move to Virginia: “We are excited about the facility, which offers our company a viable opportunity to expand; we are excited about the work force of Giles County, which offers our company a highly qualified and experienced employee base, and we are grateful to the Commonwealth of Virginia and Governor Northam for supporting our efforts through a grant from the Commonwealth’s Opportunity Fund.”

The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with Giles County and Onward New River Valley to secure the project for Virginia. Governor Northam approved a $150,000 Commonwealth’s Opportunity Fund investment to assist the County with the project. Funding and services to support the company’s employee training activities will be provided through the Virginia Jobs Investment Program.

“We are very pleased that Cogar has chosen Giles County for its expansion. They represent true American manufacturing and will bring quality job opportunities here for our citizens,” said Board of Supervisors Chairman Jeff Morris.

“This is another great project for Giles County and a testament to the quality of resources, infrastructure, and workforce, that exists in the New River Valley,” added Giles County’s Industrial Development Authority Chairman Dr. S. Lee Wheeler.

“I’m proud of Giles County’s efforts to continue building on recent economic successes, which have brought more than 100 new jobs to the County in recent months,” said Delegate Chris Hurst. “We look forward to welcoming Cogar Manufacturing to the New River Valley.”

“I am very pleased that Cogar Manufacturing chose to relocate to Giles County,” said Senator John Edwards. “The collaborative efforts of Giles County and State Agencies in processing the opportunity funds will greatly benefit the region by providing 60 jobs at the former Caterpillar facility in Pearisburg. I welcome Cogar Manufacturing and commend them for investing in Virginia’s economy and the future of Giles County.”

Full Release

Office of the Governor
Contact: Ofirah Yheskel
Email: Ofirah.Yheskel@governor.virginia.gov

Virginia Economic Development Partnership
Contact: Suzanne Clark
Phone: (804) 545-5806
Email: sclark@yesvirginia.gov

Cogar Manufacturing
Contact: John Cogar
Phone: (304) 252-4435
Email: jcogar@cogarmanufacturing.com

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Virginia’s New River Valley: For those searching for an inspiring place to live and do business, Virginia’s New River Valley provides both an eclectic small town atmosphere and an innovative, collaborative business community with a loyal, highly skilled, and educated workforce. Offering the best of all worlds – magnificent mountains, cutting-edge research, arts, entertainment, and education – it’s 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.

Chartio to Expand to Blacksburg

BLACKSBURG, VA – Chartio, a cloud-based data company out of San Francisco, is expanding to Downtown Blacksburg. Chartio’s new offices will be located in The Brownstone Building. Chartio will hire five new engineers this year, and plans to increase by 10-15 more in the next three.

The tech company creates charts and interactive dashboards for businesses. Some of their clients include Squarespace, GAP, Prezi, and Blackboard.

This is a great addition for the New River Valley’s growing base of companies in the Information Technology industry.

Read more from WDBJ7. Check out Chartio’s Career page to apply for open positions in Blacksburg.

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Virginia’s New River Valley: For those searching for an inspiring place to live and do business, Virginia’s New River Valley provides both an eclectic small town atmosphere and an innovative, collaborative business community with a loyal, highly skilled, and educated workforce. Offering the best of all worlds – magnificent mountains, cutting-edge research, arts, entertainment, and education – it’s 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.

Governor McAuliffe Announces 83 New Jobs in Giles County

~ Interstate Group LLC to invest $4.1 million to establish East Coast manufacturing and distribution operation ~

 

GLEN LYN, VA – Governor Terry McAuliffe today announced that Interstate Group LLC, an industry leader in the manufacturing and sale of enclosed cargo trailers, will invest $4.1 million to establish a 100,000-square-foot East Coast manufacturing and distribution operation in the former GE Fairchild Mining Equipment plant in Giles County. Virginia successfully competed against North Carolina for the project, which will create 83 new jobs.

“We are thrilled that Interstate Group has selected Giles County and the Commonwealth as the home of its East Coast operations,” said Governor McAuliffe, speaking at the announcement. “This important project will not only create new jobs for an area that has been hard hit by recent closures, it will bring a shuttered plant back into productive use. With one of the nation’s largest transportation networks, an outstanding workforce, and competitive operating costs, the Commonwealth is the ideal location for Interstate Group as it expands its footprint. This is a major win for the New River Valley, and we are proud the company will contribute to our efforts to diversify and build a new Virginia economy.”

 

Founded in 1995, Interstate Group LLC is an industry leader in the manufacturing and sales of enclosed cargo trailers. The company is headquartered in Nampa, Idaho, and has manufacturing plants in Arkansas, Arizona, and Idaho.

 

“Strengthening the advanced manufacturing sector in the Commonwealth continues to be a top priority, and Interstate Group will be a great addition to the growing cluster in the New River Valley,” said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Todd Haymore. “Interstate Group joins nearly 6,000 manufacturing firms that operate in Virginia and generate more than $113 billion in direct annual economic output, and will bring vital, quality jobs to the region. We’re proud to add the company to our corporate roster, and we look forward to a long partnership.”


“Interstate is excited to select Glen Lyn as the location for our fourth and largest manufacturing plant,” said Michael Snow, CEO of Interstate Group. “We looked at other states in the region and at multiple locations in Virginia. The opportunity to repurpose an existing facility, combined with the incentives we received from the Commonwealth and Giles County, will help us reduce the cost of our investment while preserving our culture of high incentive-based pay for our team members. I have been very impressed with the understanding and responsiveness of the state and local officials to our needs and timelines. We look forward to being part of this community and making it the foundation of our growth on the East Coast.”

 

The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with Giles County and Onward New River Valley to secure the project for Virginia. Governor McAuliffe approved a $200,000 Commonwealth’s Opportunity Fund to assist the County with the project. The company will be eligible to receive Sales and Use Tax Exemptions on manufacturing equipment, and will also be eligible to receive a Major Business Facility Job Tax Credit. Funding and services to support Interstate Group’s employee training activities will be provided through the Virginia Jobs Investment Program.

 

“This is great news for the entire New River Valley and we are very excited that Interstate Group has chosen Giles County as the location for its East Coast manufacturing facility,” said Richard McCoy, Chairman of the Giles County Board of Supervisors.

“These jobs are much needed in an economy that has been hard hit by downturns in the coal industry” added Dr. S. Lee Wheeler, Chairman of the Giles County Industrial Development Authority. We appreciate the work of the Economic Development Partnership, the Governor’s office, Onward New River Valley, and all of all those involved in making this a reality.”


Office of the Governor
Contact: Brian Coy
Email: Brian.Coy@governor.virginia.gov

 

Virginia Economic Development Partnership
Contact: Suzanne Clark
Phone: (804) 545-5806
Email: sclark@yesvirginia.org

 

Interstate Group LLC
Contact:  Michael Snow
Phone: 208 442 7640
Email: snowm@interstatecargo.com

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Virginia’s New River Valley: For those searching for an inspiring place to live and do business, Virginia’s New River Valley provides both an eclectic small town atmosphere and an innovative, collaborative business community with a loyal, highly skilled, and educated workforce. Offering the best of both worlds – magnificent mountains, cutting-edge research, arts, entertainment, and education – it’s 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.