VA: Governor McDonnell Announces 225 New Jobs in City of Norfolk
18 Mar, 2011
Global logistics provider invests a total of $12 million in new warehousing and distribution operation
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Governor Bob McDonnell announced today that Belgium-based Katoen Natie (KTN), a worldwide global logistics provider, will establish a warehousing and distribution operation in the City of Norfolk. Ford Motor Company sold its Norfolk Assembly Plant property to Jacoby Development, Inc. KTN will invest $10.5 million to purchase a portion of the former Ford Plant from Jacoby and refurbish the 662,000-square-foot former body shop. KTN will invest an additional $1.5 million in new equipment. Fully staffed, the project will create 225 new jobs.
Speaking about today’s announcement, Governor McDonnell said, “We have been working for a long time to bring this project to Virginia. The advantages of the Port of Virginia, as well as the opportunity to refurbish an existing, available property are the reasons that Katoen Natie chose Norfolk for the site of its East Coast warehousing and distribution facility. In addition to creating 225 new jobs for the Commonwealth, the company will further enhance port operations with the addition of this waterfront facility.”
“A state-of-the-art facility like the Port of Virginia and an extensive transportation infrastructure make Virginia an ideal location for global logistics operations,” said Jim Cheng, Virginia Secretary of Commerce and Trade. “The Hampton Roads area is a perfect fit for a company like KTN and I commend the hard work of everyone involved in the process.”
Incorporated in 1854 as a cooperative in the port of Antwerp, Belgium, the original activities of Katoen Natie consisted of typical wharfingers activities—the reception and handling of goods on the docks, especially cotton and related goods. Today the company is ranked number one world-wide in petrochemicals. Katoen Natie employs 9,300 employees in 28 countries.
Frank Vingerhoets, President of KTN’s North America subsidiary, said, “KTN chose the location due to its excellent proximity to the port and its appeal in attracting new customers to KTN. We see the Hampton Roads region and our Norfolk division as having a very bright future.”
The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with the City of Norfolk, the Hampton Roads Economic Development Alliance, the Virginia Port Authority and Jacoby Development, Inc to secure the project for Virginia. The company is eligible to receive benefits from the Virginia Enterprise Zone Program, administered by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development. Through its Virginia Jobs Investment Program, the Virginia Department of Business Assistance will provide funding and services to support the company’s recruitment and training activities.
Norfolk Mayor Paul D. Fraim said, “On behalf of myself and the entire city council, I welcome KTN to our Norfolk business family. In these challenging times, we are grateful not only for their investment in our city, but particularly thankful for the value-added jobs they will create.”