November Open for Business Report

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November Open for Business Report


West Virginia - Open for Business!

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin today released the latest “Open for Business” report documenting the state’s economic progress. The November 2011 report highlights projects and related announcements from businesses both large and small that will assist with the creation of new jobs and the preservation of existing jobs.

Amazon.com celebrates Huntington customer service center expansion; expects to add 200 jobs by 2014
Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin and other dignitaries joined Amazon.com, Inc. on Nov. 4 to mark the opening of the company’s new customer service center at Kinetic Park, Huntington. The new 70,000-square-foot center represents an expansion of Amazon’s first East Coast operation, established in Huntington in 2000. The original enterprise was based in the Jean Dean Public Safety Building and other sites in town. Currently, the facility employs 500 people, including seasonal workers. By December 2014, Amazon will create more than 200 additional full-time jobs. Job seekers should apply online at www.amazon.com/csjobs.

DirecTV hosts grand opening for renovated call center in Huntington
DirecTV recently celebrated the successful move of its call center into newly-renovated quarters in Huntington. The equipment and building revitalization represent an investment of $25 million. The center moved from the former Arch Coal building to a newly-refurbished building on Fifth Street Road. The new facility features a high-tech training room, ergonomic workstations, employee fitness center and other amenities. Huntington handles calls related to DirecTV’s video service, such as activation, upgrades and sports programming. The center receives 700,000 or more calls per month. The project retained 730 jobs and is expected to create up to 100 new jobs.

Engineering firm announces plans to open regional office in Kanawha County
Audubon Engineering Co. announced plans to open a regional office in Charleston. The Gulf Coast-based firm expects to have approximately 30 workers in Charleston by mid-2012. Additional staffing needs will be determined by the market. Audubon serves the oil, gas and petrochemical and refining industries. The company cited one attraction of opening an operation in West Virginia included the natural gas potential of the Marcellus Shale formation in West Virginia and surrounding states.

Toyota celebrates 15 years in Putnam County
State dignitaries joined with Toyota executives to mark the 15th anniversary of Toyota Motor Manufacturing West Virginia (TMMWV) in Buffalo. Toyota first broke ground for the West Virginia plant in 1996. During the decade-and-a-half since then, TMMWV has expanded six times, representing an investment of $1 billion. The company employs more than 1,000 people. The Buffalo plant TMMWV manufactures 4-cylinder and V6 engines for Toyota operations in Indiana and Canada. The West Virginia plant also produces automatic transmissions and gears for plants in Kentucky, Indiana and Canada. For seven consecutive years, TMMWV has received the Harbour Award, an industry honor recognizing productivity of powertrain plants in North America.

WVEDA approves $13 million for new Kanawha County business
The West Virginia Economic Development Authority (WVEDA) approved a new loan during its October 2011 meeting:

  • Carbonxt Inc., $13 million, for building finance and equipment purchase and installation on land in Institute leased from Bayer CropScience. Carbonxt Inc. will begin Phase I of its first full-scale plant for the production of activated carbons for use in mercury emissions control. The company expects to employ up to 37 workers in three years. Carbonxt Inc. is a subsidiary of Australian firm Carbonxt Group Limited. The project represents a total investment of $29.6 million.
In other action, the WVEDA’s Certified Development Corporation meeting approved two Small Business Administration (SBA) 504 loans:

  • Midland Meadows Senior Living, $1.5 million, to add 30 additional assisted living units plus duplex cottage units, creating up to 30 new jobs in Cabell County
  • Highlands Hospitality in Ohio County, $1.6 million, to finance a new hotel at the Highland development in Triadelphia. The development is expected to create up to 30 new jobs.

The nonprofit Certified Development Corporation helps West Virginia companies access the federal SBA 504 program, a long-term financing tool that provides small businesses with long-term, fixed-rate financing to acquire fixed assets for expansion or modernization.

West Virginia is one of only eight states to add tech jobs in 2010
Only eight states added tech jobs in 2010, according to TechAmerica Foundation’s 14th annual Cyberstates report. The largest gains were reported in Michigan (adding 2,700 jobs), the District of Columbia (1,400 jobs), West Virginia (400 jobs), Utah (400 jobs) and South Carolina (300 jobs). Cyberstates 2011 relies on data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Huntington medical centers earn national accreditation
The Edwards Comprehensive Cancer Center Diagnostic Breast Center and the Cabell Huntington Hospital Breast Health Center have each been granted a three-year designation by the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers (NAPBC), a program of the American College of Surgeons. To be accredited, the centers must undergo a rigorous evaluation process and performance review. Accredited centers are evaluated on clinical management, research, community outreach and other factors.


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 4, 2011

CONTACT:
Jacqueline Proctor, (304) 558-2000
Catherine Zacchi, (304) 957-9340



In This Issue

Amazon.com celebrates Huntington customer service center expansion; expects to add 200 jobs by 2014

DirecTV hosts grand opening for renovated call center in Huntington

Engineering firm announces plans to open regional office in Kanawha County

Toyota celebrates 15 years in Putnam County

WVEDA approves $13 million for new Kanawha County business

West Virginia is one of only eight states to add tech jobs in 2010

Huntington medical centers earn national accreditation


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