Governor Bob McDonnell announced that Phoenix Packaging Operations, LLC, a subsidiary of Phoenix Packaging Group, will invest more than $20 million to establish its first U.S. operation in Pulaski County. The company will manufacture thermoformed rigid plastic packaging for customers in the U.S., and also establish its North American headquarters in Pulaski. The project will create 240 new jobs. Virginia successfully competed against Georgia, Kentucky, North Carolina, Tennessee and West Virginia.
Speaking about today’s announcement, Governor McDonnell commented, “This manufacturing and U.S. headquarters operation is tremendous news for the New River Valley and Virginia. Phoenix Packaging is an international company that produces the packaging for many major companies and household names. With this Pulaski County operation, the company will be in closer proximity to serve its U.S. customers. I applaud everyone involved in winning a highly competitive project that involves a significant investment and 240 new jobs for the Commonwealth.
Phoenix Packaging Group, a family owned Latin American company dedicated to the creation, design, and manufacturing of plastic packaging and foodservice disposable products, is one of the most important packaging manufacturing conglomerates in Latin America with sales in more than 30 countries. The company was established in 1999 with the integration of several industry leading companies in Colombia and Venezuela, and in 2003 a Mexican company joined the group. The company has eight locations in Latin America, employing 4,000 people in four countries. Customers include Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, Keurig, Van Houtte, Agro-Farma, General Mills, Sturm Foods and Colgate, for products such as ice cream and other dairy products, margarine, desserts, and soaps, as well as single-serve products such as yogurt and coffee.
“Phoenix Packaging chose the Commonwealth of Virginia to be the home of its U.S. operations after analyzing more than 40 possible locations in six states from the standpoint of geographical location, availability of qualified workforce, energy costs and state and local incentives, among others,” said Alberto Peisach, President and CEO, Phoenix Packaging Operations. “We found that state and local authorities in Virginia were seriously committed to helping new companies set up their manufacturing facilities and bring in high-paying jobs. The state government’s proactive attitude in finding ways to meet our needs, and their flexibility in creating a program to help us find and train the right workforce, was far more forward-thinking than any competing states. With three major higher education institutions in the area, and the government officials’ unwavering interest in creating jobs, Pulaski County was hard to beat.
The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with Pulaski County and the New River Valley Economic Development Alliance to secure the project for Virginia. Governor McDonnell approved an $850,000 grant from the Governor’s Opportunity Fund to assist Pulaski County with the project. The Virginia Department of Business Assistance will provide training assistance through the Virginia Jobs Investment Program. The company is eligible to receive rail access funding from the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation. The company also is eligible to participate in the Virginia Enterprise Zone Program, administered by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development.
Pulaski County Board of Supervisors Chairman, Joe Sheffey voiced his appreciation: “Phoenix Packaging’s decision to set up its U.S. operations in Pulaski County and to employ 240 persons provides a much welcomed boost to our local economy. The location of a major food packing company builds on the County’s agricultural roots, Virginia Tech’s food science expertise and local plastics-related companies Xaloy and Mar Bal. We sincerely appreciate Phoenix Packaging’s commitment; the investment by Governor McDonnell; the assistance of the Virginia Economic Development Partnership; the initiative of the New River Valley Economic Development Alliance; and the dedication of the County economic development staff.”