Governor Terry McAuliffe announced today that specialty yarn producer Drake Extrusion, Inc., a subsidiary of International Fibres Group (IFG), will invest $6 million to expand its manufacturing operation in Henry County. The company is a leading manufacturer of colored staple and filament polypropylene fiber. The project will create 30 new jobs.
Speaking at today’s event, Governor McAuliffe said, “The trend of expanding manufacturing operations across the Commonwealth is the strongest testament to Virginia’s outstanding infrastructure and business resources. Drake Extrusion has been a paramount corporate citizen in Henry County for the past 20 years, and I am thrilled that the company continues to invest in the Commonwealth. Advanced manufacturing growth is a key component of our ongoing success in building a new Virginia economy.”
“Congratulations to Drake Extrusion and Henry County on this expansion in the important manufacturing sector,” said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Maurice Jones. “The company has benefitted from the outstanding talent, infrastructure and quality of life in the region for over two decades, and this growth is a testament to the great work of the company and the great assets we have in Virginia.”
Since 1996, Drake Extrusion has become the leading U.S. manufacturer of polypropylene fiber and yarns. Headquartered in Stockholm, Sweden parent company IFG is a worldwide producer of polypropylene, polyethylene, polyamide fiber and filament yarn with additional offices in the UK, Austria, Belgium as well as Virginia. Drake’s products serve a variety of sectors, including residential upholstery, home furnishings, automotive, floor covering and geotextiles.
“Drake Extrusion chose to locate in Martinsville-Henry County 21 years ago,” said John Parkinson, Drake Extrusion CEO. “At that time we believed that both the state and the locality had a proactive approach to business, which proved to be absolutely correct. As a result, Drake Extrusion has continued to make several additional investments in M-HC, which is now the only locality in which our parent company does business in the U.S.”
The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with the Martinsville-Henry County Economic Development Corporation to secure the project for Virginia. The Virginia Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission approved $100,000 in Tobacco Region Opportunity Funds. The company is eligible to receive state benefits from the Virginia Enterprise Zone Program, administered by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development. Drake will also be eligible to receive sales and use tax exemptions on manufacturing equipment. Funding and services to support the company’s employee training activities will be provided through the Virginia Jobs Investment Program.
“We are thrilled with this news,” said Jim Adams, Chairman of the Henry County Board of Supervisors. “Drake Extrusion has been a vital part of our community since 1996, and we look forward to strengthening and growing this relationship well into the future.”
“We were so very grateful when Drake Extrusion put its trust in the people of our region to make it successful when it originally started its manufacturing operations here in Henry County in 1995, and we are so excited with this announcement that Drake will be expanding its manufacturing plant and hiring more of our citizens in Southside,” said Senator William Stanley, a Commissioner of the Virginia Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission. “The Drake Extrusion expansion effort once again demonstrates that this region is a perfect fit for advanced manufacturing in a 21st century economy, and Drake Extrusion leads the way. The trust that Drake Extrusion placed in us over 20 years ago has continued to pay dividends both for our area and for their excellent business operations. The Tobacco Commission, along with other economic development partners, continues to show an unwavering commitment to put Southside Virginia back to work, and this great announcement is just one more vital piece in restoring our area to the forefront of the Virginia economy, both now and in the future.”
Since the beginning of the McAuliffe administration, 634 economic development deals have been closed in Virginia with more than $10.94 billion in capital investment, which is more than any previous governor in the first 25 months in office.