Drake investing $6.9 million to expand, add 30 new jobs in Henry County

Drake investing $6.9 million to expand, add 30 new jobs in Henry County

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Drake Extrusion

Drake Extrusion's facility in Ridgeway.

Staff report

Drake Extrusion is investing in a new manufacturing facility in Henry County that will bring in 30 jobs to expand its position in the colored yarn and fiber industry.

A release from the governor’s office on Monday said Drake, which employs 187 at the 790 Industrial Park Drive in Ridgeway, would invest $6.9 million and take over a vacant building on that same road.

Henry County is investing $342,221, which includes local Enterprise Zone grants and cash from the Harvest Opportunity Fund, as an incentive, and the Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with the Martinsville-Henry County Economic Development Corporation to provide a $90,000 grant from the Commonwealth’s Opportunity Fund to assist Henry County, the release said.

Drake is also eligible to receive state benefits from the Virginia Enterprise Zone Program.

Drake has been part of Henry County’s manufacturing scene since 1995. The address of the building it now will occupy was not specified, but that building is said to be 120,000 square feet.

“Drake Extrusion has a long history of success in Martinsville-Henry County, which has fostered an impressive business climate, infrastructure, and workforce for its growing cluster of manufacturers,” Gov. Ralph Northam said in the release. “We thank the company for its long-term commitment to Southern Virginia, and for choosing to expand and create new jobs amid these challenging times.

Drake’s facility in Henry County is the only one in the U.S. for parent company Duroc AB, which is an international producer of polypropylene fiber technology, the company said.

The company’s products help create residential upholstery, home furnishings, automotive, floor covering and geotextiles.

“We continue to grow our business here in large part due to our tremendous workforce and the strong support we receive from our local governments,” Drake Extrusion CEO John Parkinson said in the release.

Drake will use the Virginia Talent Accelerator Program in the community college system to help recruit its new employees. The types of jobs and potential salaries were not specified in the release.

“Drake has been a strong and consistent member of our business community for many years,” Jim Adams, chair of the Henry County Board of Supervisors, said in the release.

“Drake Extrusion’s continued growth in Henry County is welcome news,” said Larry Ryder, Chair, Martinsville-Henry County EDC Board. “It’s especially encouraging in this current climate for Drake to be adding both new equipment and jobs. That bodes well for Martinsville-Henry County’s future.”

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