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    VIRGINIA ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT PARTNERSHIP

    © 2014 All rights reserved.
    YesVirginia Business Blog | A place for news, opinions, and information regarding the Virginia Economic Development Partnership.

    Carded Graphics Continues Growth Trajectory in Staunton, Va.

    Friday, 14 September 2012 14:00 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    On Wednesday, Carded Graphics announced plans to expand its production capacity in Staunton, Va., bringing a $7 million investment and 34 new jobs to the Shenandoah Valley region...

    On Wednesday, Carded Graphics announced plans to expand its production capacity in Staunton, Va., bringing a $7 million investment and 34 new jobs to the Shenandoah Valley region.

    A leading producer of custom folding cartons and paperboard packaging, the additional capacity will allow Carded Graphics to meet growing customer demand for its award-winning graphics, packaging design, printing, die-cutting, and state-of-the-art converting technology.

    Originally founded in Virginia, the company has morphed and relocated through a number of acquisitions. Since returning to the Commonwealth in 2006, the company has doubled in size.

    The City of Staunton offers a prime location for the company’s 120,000-square-foot facility, which houses Carded Graphics’ corporate offices and production plant. Located near the interchange of I-81 and I-64, the company can easily access Virginia’s premier transportation network with convenient reach to customers across the U.S.

    In addition, Carded Graphics plays a key role in the Shenandoah Valley supply chain, providing packaging to nearby companies, including Hershey’s, Hollister, and ASR.

    With its low-cost operating environment, highly-skilled workforce and robust transportation infrastructure, Virginia continues to be a prime location for advanced manufacturers, attracting more than $13.8 billion in capital investment over the last decade.

    To find out what more than 6,000 Virginia manufacturing establishments already know, click here.

    Montgomery County Gains another 50 Jobs—Social Media Company Heyo Expands

    Wednesday, 12 September 2012 08:55 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    Heyo, formerly known as Lujure Media Inc., just announced plans to invest $100,000 and create 50 new jobs in Blacksburg, Va., located in Montgomery County...

    Heyo, formerly known as Lujure Media Inc., just announced plans to invest $100,000 and create 50 new jobs in Blacksburg, Va., located in Montgomery County.

    Founded by students at Virginia Tech and Radford University in 2010, Heyo is a shining example of the innovation and creativity of Virginia’s entrepreneurs. The company provides an easy-to-use platform that allows users to drag and drop Facebook fan pages, mobile apps and websites.

    Virginia’s universities thrive when it comes to cultivating the entrepreneurial spirit necessary to create next generation technologies. Heyo’s student entrepreneurs received guidance along the way through entrepreneurial programs at their respective universities.

    CTO Brian Putt was a member of Radford University’s Collegiate Entrepreneurs club. CEO Nathan Latka and CFO Josh Gunter both attended Virginia Tech and the trio entered Heyo into the Virginia Tech Student Business Competition in 2011, winning the $5,000 grand prize. The competition was sponsored by the Virginia Tech KnowledgeWorks Third Annual Entrepreneurship Summit. 

    With easy access to tech-savvy grads, Heyo’s decision to remain in Blacksburg is certainly a positive reflection on the local talent pool. According to CEO Nathan Latka, “The close knit community makes it easy to build culture and hire top tier talent from top ranked local universities like Virginia Tech and Radford University.”

    No stranger to top IT talent, Virginia boasts the highest concentration of high-tech workers according to Cyberstates 2011.

    Governor McDonnell designated 2012 as “The Year of the Entrepreneur,” and Heyo’s rapid success is a great example of why Virginia is the best place for entrepreneurs.

    To learn more about Virginia’s robust technology industry, click here.

    Multiple Virginia Locations Ranked Top Ten by CNN Money’s Best Places to Live

    Friday, 7 September 2012 14:08 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    CNN Money magazine named Reston, Va., No. 7 in the overall ranking in its Best Places to Live: America’s Best Small Cities report. Reston earned a top ten placement due to its unique combination of exceptional access to growing job markets and high quality of life.

    CNN Money magazine named Reston, Va., No. 7 in the overall ranking in its Best Places to Live: America’s Best Small Cities report. Reston earned a top ten placement due to its unique combination of exceptional access to growing job markets and high quality of life.

    Reston’s strategic location between Washington, D.C., and Dulles International Airport continues to attract a growing number of national and international firms in the government, defense, and technology sectors. The community also offers residents access to a thriving downtown and some of the nation’s most highly-rated schools.

    In one important subcategory, Fastest Job Growth, three Virginia counties also won high honors.

    Loudoun County earned the No. 1 spot for Fastest Job Growth and experienced the highest percentage of job growth in the nation. A leader in the technology sector, more than 50 percent of all internet traffic flows through the county daily. Now home to more than 4.3 million square feet of data centers, it is easy to see why Loudoun has earned the nickname “Data Center Ally.”

    Another Northern Virginia location, Prince William County, received the No. 8 ranking for Fastest Job Growth. Prince William benefits from major military employers including Quantico Marine Corps Base. Excellent quality of life in Prince William County keeps these highly-skilled workers in the region even after they exit military service.

    Suffolk County, ranked No. 9 for Fastest Job Growth, offers many distribution and logistical advantages. Located in southeast Virginia, the county offers close proximity to the Port of Virginia and is serviced by two railroads and multiple interstates.

    With so many unique and diverse locations Virginia continues to be recognized as a top state for business.  To learn more about these and other locations fostering growth in Virginia click here.

    Aeroprobe Corporation Expands into Montgomery County, Va.

    Thursday, 6 September 2012 09:01 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    Homegrown Virginia company Aeroprobe Corporation just announced plans to relocate its headquarters and add a manufacturing operation in the Town of Christiansburg in Montgomery County’s Falling Branch Corporate Park. The project is expected to bring a $3 million investment and 40 new jobs to the area...

    Homegrown Virginia company Aeroprobe Corporation just announced plans to relocate its headquarters and add a manufacturing operation in the Town of Christiansburg in Montgomery County’s Falling Branch Corporate Park. The project is expected to bring a $3 million investment and 40 new jobs to the area.

    Aeroprobe will remain in the New River Valley region, relocating its headquarters from Blacksburg to Christiansburg and establishing a manufacturing operation in order to accommodate increased demand for its products. The company grew by 76 percent in 2011 and expects to increase by 103 percent in 2012.

    The new facility at Falling Branch Corporate Park will include 20,000 square feet of space with room to expand to 40,000 square feet.

    Aeroprobe Corporation also operates a satellite facility in Blacksburg Industrial Park which houses the company's high-speed wind tunnel.

    The company elected to remain in Virginia due to the Commonwealth’s strong manufacturing workforce and the high quality of life Montgomery County offers. With its close proximity to Virginia Tech, ranked one of the best universities for aerospace employee recruitment by Aviation Week & Space Technology, the company has easy access to a steady supply of engineers and high-tech employees. 

    According to Aeroprobe CEO Nanci Hardwick, “We are delighted to live and work in one of the most beautiful places in the world. The availability of highly technical talent in a business friendly community made Montgomery County our first choice to house our international operations.”

    A leading manufacturer of air data measurement equipment, Aeroprobe illustrates the diversity of Virginia’s aerospace industry. The company’s products have been used by Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Air Bus and NASA.

    To learn more about Virginia’s aerospace industry and why aerospace companies have invested more than $1.5 billion in the Commonwealth over the last 10 years, click here.

    The Vitamin Shoppe Brings First Distribution Center to Virginia

    Tuesday, 4 September 2012 16:41 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    On Friday, The Vitamin Shoppe announced plans to establish its first Virginia distribution facility in Hanover County. The operation will be located at the Virginia Transportation Park in Ashland, Va., and will bring a $39.4 million investment and 174 new jobs to the Central Virginia region...

    On Friday, The Vitamin Shoppe announced plans to establish its first Virginia distribution facility in Hanover County. The operation will be located at the Virginia Transportation Park in Ashland, Va., and will bring a $39.4 million investment and 174 new jobs to the Central Virginia region.

    The Vitamin Shoppe’s accelerated growth and desire to be closer to its mid-Atlantic customer base were primary reasons for building the warehouse and fulfillment center in Virginia. The company has grown from one store in 1977 to more than 550 company-owned retail stores today.

    Virginia successfully competed against North Carolina due to the Commonwealth’s strategic location, competitive business costs, and premier workforce.

    The Hanover County location offers visibility to I-95, allowing the company to easily access Virginia’s premier transportation network, which includes six major interstate highways, 14 railroads, nine commercial airports and the international Port of Virginia.

    Virginia’s competitive operating environment includes a six percent corporate tax rate that remains unchanged since 1972, construction costs 16 percent below the national average, and a low unemployment tax rate 32 percent below the national average.

    According to Ashland Mayor Faye Prichard, “The Town of Ashland and The Vitamin Shoppe share core values of community involvement and healthy living…. Their decision to locate in Ashland and Hanover builds upon the reputation of this region serving as a strategic location for supply chain centers in the mid-Atlantic.”

    The Vitamin Shoppe joins the company of Ace Hardware, Amazon.com, Backcountry.com, Home Depot, McKesson Corp, QVC, Target and Wal-Mart, all of which have established fulfillment and distribution operations in the Commonwealth.

    To learn why Virginia continues to be a leading location for distribution centers, attracting more than $1.6 billion in capital investment from global logistics companies over the last 10 years, click here.

    Virginia’s Metro Areas Win Four Top Ten Rankings from Business Facilities Magazine

    Friday, 31 August 2012 10:49 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    Four Virginia locations received top ten rankings from Business Facilities Magazine’s 2012 Metro Rankings Report. Now in its eighth year, the report recognizes future economic leaders by ranking more than 350 Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) in 13 categories.

    Four Virginia locations received top ten rankings from Business Facilities Magazine’s 2012 Metro Rankings Report. Now in its eighth year, the report recognizes future economic leaders by ranking more than 350 Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) in 13 categories.

    Arlington and Richmond, Va., both earned top ten placements for Best Quality of Life. Virginia’s 57 state and national parks, top-ranked schools, low unemployment and abundant cultural resources routinely garner national attention.

    Arlington, ranked No. 3, boasts the highest per capita income and the highest home values in the region, while Richmond, ranked No. 9, offers the state’s top ranked hospital and largest four-year college.

    The Blacksburg-Christiansburg-Radford, Va., area received a top five win in the Jobs Growth Leaders category with a No. 4 ranking.  Home to Virginia Tech, Radford University and New River Community College, the region’s rapid growth is supported by a highly educated workforce.

    Norfolk, Va., gained the No. 7 spot in the Logistics Leaders - Ports category. The Port of Virginia is the deepest port on the U.S. East Coast, linking Virginia to nearly 400 ports in more than 100 countries worldwide.
     
    To learn more about Virginia’s winning combination of outstanding quality of life, strong workforce and excellent infrastructure click here.

    GE Celebrates One-Year Anniversary and 100 Hires in Henrico County

    Thursday, 30 August 2012 16:46 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    Exactly one year after opening its Henrico County Information Security Technology Center, GE has already hired 100 people. Following the company’s announcement in April 2011, GE is ahead of schedule for the 200 new jobs it expects to create over the next few years...

    Exactly one year after opening its Henrico County Information Security Technology Center, GE has already hired 100 people.

    Following the company’s announcement in April 2011, GE is ahead of schedule for the 200 new jobs it expects to create over the next few years.

    With more than 300,000 employees operating in 100 countries, safeguarding GE and customer data is an enormous task. Utilizing the center’s state-of-the-art cyber forensics lab and cyber intelligence monitoring center, teams are focused on developing innovative solutions to keep company information secure.

    Locating near a skilled, high-tech workforce was critical for GE. With the highest concentration of high-tech workers according to Cyberstates 2011, Virginia proved to be the right location.

    Virginia also offers companies the ability to partner with leading universities at the forefront of research and development in the field of cyber security.

    George Mason University’s International Cyber Center, The Hume Center for National Security and Technology at Virginia Tech, and James Madison University’s Institute for Infrastructure and Information Assurance are just a few of the leading programs preparing a solid pipeline of high-tech workers in Virginia.

    To learn why companies consider Virginia a world-class center for technology, investing more than $7.9 billion in Virginia IT projects over the last ten years, click here.

    Backcountry.com Opens East Coast Fulfillment Center in Montgomery County, Va.

    Wednesday, 29 August 2012 13:29 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    On Friday, Backcountry.com celebrated the opening of its East Coast fulfillment center in Montgomery County, less than a year after the company announced it would invest $20 million and create 200 new jobs...

    On Friday, Backcountry.com celebrated the opening of its East Coast fulfillment center in Montgomery County, less than a year after the company announced it would invest $20 million and create 200 new jobs. 

    Secretary Cheng attended the ribbon-cutting ceremony, congratulating the company on its swift progress preparing the facility at Falling Branch Corporate Park.

    As the largest online specialty retailer of premium outdoor gear, Backcountry.com is known for its fast delivery times and selected the Commonwealth for its strategic East Coast location and world-class logistics network. With 14 railroads, six major interstate highways, 9 commercial airports and the international Port of Virginia, the Commonwealth offers easy access to customers on the East Coast and beyond. 

    To maintain its reputation for excellent customer service, locating near a skilled workforce was critical to Backcountry.com. With its close proximity to the Appalachian Trail and Washington-Jefferson National Forest, Montgomery County caters to outdoor enthusiasts, drawing a talented and passionate labor pool closely aligned with the company’s mission.

    Virginia continues to be a leading location for fulfillment and distribution centers—Ace Hardware, Amazon.com, Home Depot, McKesson Corp, QVC, Target and Wal-Mart have all established operations in the Commonwealth.

    Over the last ten years global logistics companies have announced more than 360 projects, totaling more than $1.6 billion in capital investment. To learn more about Virginia’s premier location and logistics infrastructure, click here.

    Secretary Cheng (left) joins company and local officials as Co-Founder and Executive Chairman Jim Holland cuts the ribbon with one of Backcountry.com’s products.

    Global Tech Leader iGATE Expands U.S. Presence in Loudoun County

    Wednesday, 22 August 2012 16:16 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    Technology leader iGATE recently announced plans to invest more than $1 million to establish a new facility in Loudoun County, bringing 250 new jobs to the area over the next few years...

    Technology leader iGATE recently announced plans to invest more than $1 million to establish a new facility in Loudoun County, bringing 250 new jobs to the area over the next few years.

    The location in Loudoun County will allow iGATE to further the expansion of its technology consulting services into the U.S. market, particularly with nearby Washington D.C. government agencies and businesses.

    Close proximity to the Washington Dulles International Airport was a key advantage, giving a global company like iGATE access to 80 percent of the world’s economies.

    The ability to draw upon a highly-skilled, tech-savvy workforce also factored into Virginia’s favor. Due to the consultative nature of the company’s custom technology products, human capital is a critical driver of the company’s success.

    Fortunately the Commonwealth has the employee pool to match companies’ workforce needs, with the highest concentration of high-tech workers according to Cyberstates 2011. Companies are taking notice of Virginia’s world-class employee base. Professional, scientific and technical services—a category dependent on a quality workforce—was the top sector for job creation in Virginia last year, announcing almost 13,000 new jobs in 2011.

    iGATE Chief Delivery Officer Sean Narayanan recognized the many attributes Virginia offers companies, stating, “We have been impressed with the business and government leaders in Virginia, the high caliber of the workforce, the excellent quality of life, and we look forward to positive, long-term growth and involvement in this area.”

    To learn more about Virginia’s unique combination of assets and why companies have been prospering here for more than 400 years, click here.

    Commonwealth Laminating & Coating Announces Second Expansion in Nine Months

    Tuesday, 21 August 2012 15:00 by Info@YesVirginia.org

    Secretary Cheng visited Commonwealth Laminating & Coating’s (CLC) headquarters last week to announce the company’s second expansion in less than nine months.

    The company plans to invest $5.45 million to establish a national distribution center in the same business park as its headquarters and manufacturing operation in Martinsville, Va. The project is expected to create 60 new jobs—welcome news as Henry County and Southern Virginia continue to make positive progress towards economic recovery.

    This project is further testament to CLC’s success in Virginia, as just last November the company announced its plans to invest $16.5 million to expand its manufacturing facility, creating 40 new jobs. 

    With eight locations across five countries, CLC certainly has its pick of locations. Choosing to invest further in Virginia is a compelling endorsement of the Commonwealth’s excellent business environment. In addition, the Henry County location is the company’ sole manufacturing facility, illustrating how Virginia’s manufacturing capabilities can compete on a global level.

    Virginia has successfully competed against China, Arizona and North Carolina for CLC’s projects over the last year.

    The success of CLC’s solar control window film and high-performance coatings business adds to Virginia’s reputation as a leading location for polymer and film manufacturing companies.

    Home to more than 200 plastics companies, over the last decade Virginia has seen more than $1 billion invested by plastics firms in new and expanding facilities. 

    Virginia offers the skilled workforce, competitive operating environment and world-class logistics network so important to plastics manufacturing companies. To learn why companies like DuPont, Honeywell, Phoenix Packaging, Rubbermaid, and O’Sullivan Films have all invested in Virginia, click here.

    McKee Foods Expands Manufacturing Operation in Augusta County

    Friday, 17 August 2012 17:01 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    Secretary Cheng recently attended an event at McKee Foods’ Stuarts Draft facility in Augusta County, Va., to announce the company’s planned investment of $19 million to expand the plant, creating 78 new jobs...

    Secretary Cheng recently attended an event at McKee Foods’ Stuarts Draft facility in Augusta County, Va., to announce the company’s planned investment of $19 million to expand the plant, creating 78 new jobs.

    Best known for its Little Debbie® line of snack cakes, McKee Foods produces a wide range of food products under the Sunbelt®, Heartland® and Fieldstone™ Bakery brands. Increased demand for the company’s line of Little Debbie® donuts is a major driver for the additional production capacity.

    Successfully operating in Augusta County for 22 years, the high productivity of the local workforce helped Virginia win this project. The plant’s productivity, measured in cases produced per employee, has improved by 24 percent over the last two years, with the same number of employees and no additional automation.

    According to Randy Smith, Vice President, McKee Foods Stuarts Draft operations, “McKee Foods initially recognized the strategic advantage of building a manufacturing facility in August County more than two decades ago. A major point in that decision was seeing that the Shenandoah Valley gave us access to a highly-skilled workforce. Today we’re pleased to be able to expand our production capabilities here.”

    In addition to a highly-skilled manufacturing workforce, Virginia allows companies to improve their bottom lines. With a corporate income tax rate of 6 percent, an unemployment tax burden 32 percent lower than the national average, construction costs 16 percent lower than the national average, and favorably priced utility rates, more than 550 food and beverage companies call Virginia home.

    To learn why food and beverage manufacturers have invested more than $1.9 billion in Virginia over the last decade, click here.

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    Danville Community College Prepares Virginia's Advanced Manufacturing Workforce

    Thursday, 3 October 2013 16:37 by Info@YesVirginia.org

    With the U.S. seeing a resurgence of manufacturing jobs, Danville Community College (DCC) has launched a new initiative, the Southern Virginia Consortium for Advanced Manufacturing (SVCAM), to ensure Virginia, and especially the Dan River region, is well-positioned to capitalize on this trend.

    One of the goals of SVCAM is to expand DCC’s advanced manufacturing training programs. The manufacturing jobs that have been reshored tend to be higher tech jobs that require a strong STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) background.

    DCC has already increased the size of its popular Precision Machining Technology program. Graduates are in high demand from businesses in the region, and DCC has doubled enrollment capacity and added two new machining instructors.

    With additional funding from the Virginia General Assembly and other industry partners, DCC plans to renovate its Charles Hawkins Engineering and Industrial Technology building and expand machining lab and classroom space from 6,500 to more than 20,000 square feet. SVCAM funding will also be used to expand DCC’s welding, robotics, industrial maintenance, electronics, polymer manufacturing, engineering technology, additive manufacturing and nanotechnology programs.

    Another benefit of the SVCAM program is increased outreach to younger students. DCC has partnered with area high schools to establish a 33-hour dual enrollment program that allows juniors and seniors to earn credit towards an Advanced Manufacturing Certificate and gain valuable skills in one of four areas:  precision machining technology, electronics, industrial maintenance or welding.

    The benefits of the SVCAM program are already paying off. North American Mold Technology recently announced plans to establish a new operation in Danville and create 120 new jobs. DCC’s ability to supply and train a high-tech manufacturing workforce was cited by the company as a key factor in their location decision and helped Virginia successfully compete against Ohio for the project.

    DCC and its SVCAM program is another example of Virginia’s premier education system, offering valuable workforce training solutions that attract businesses to the Commonwealth. To learn more, click here.

     

    Forbes.com Names Virginia America’s “Best State for Business”

    Wednesday, 25 September 2013 12:38 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    Virginia won the top spot again in the Forbes.com 2013 Best States for Business ranking. Virginia has held one of the top two spots every year since the award’s inception, placing No. 1 from 2006-2009 and No. 2 from 2010-2012...

    Virginia won the top spot again in the Forbes.com 2013 Best States for Business ranking. Virginia has held one of the top two spots every year since the award’s inception, placing No. 1 from 2006-2009 and No. 2 from 2010-2012.

    Forbes.com uses six factors to determine its ranking, and Virginia is the only state to rank in the top five in four of the six categories. Virginia was ranked No. 1 for its regulatory environment, No. 2 for its labor supply, No. 4 for quality of life, and No. 5 for economic climate.

    According to Forbes.com, “Virginia ranks first among the states in the regulatory category because of its business-friendly government policies and strong incentive offerings. The tort system is one of the best in the country for businesses, according to the Mercatus Center’s Freedom in the 50 States. Virginia is also one of 24 right-to-work states, which explains a union workforce that is only 4.4% of employment—fifth lowest in the U.S.”

    The study also highlighted the strength of Virginia’s workforce, which has helped draw companies like Amazon.com and Microsoft to the Commonwealth. Virginia has the highest concentration of high-tech workers, according to TechAmerica’s Cyberstates 2013.

    With concerns nationwide over the effects of sequestration, Forbes.com noted how well Virginia’s economy has performed. “Virginia’s $446 billion economy held up better than most states during the Great Recession thanks in part to spending by the federal government. But Virginia does have a widely diverse economy with strongholds in bioscience, logistics, manufacturing and technology. There are 31 companies (public and private) with more $3 billion in sales headquartered in Virginia.”

    Virginia continues to garner top accolades due to the Commonwealth’s pro-business environment, competitive operating costs, world-class labor pool, premier logistics network and strong quality of life. To learn why companies have found success in the Commonwealth for more than 400 years, click here.

    Denbigh High School’s Aviation Academy Recognized as PRIME School for Manufacturing Education

    Tuesday, 24 September 2013 16:10 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    Denbigh High School’s Aviation Academy in Newport News, Va., was added to the 2013-2014 list of Partnership Response in Manufacturing Education (PRIME) programs for the upcoming school year. Only 11 schools across the country were added this year...

    Denbigh High School’s Aviation Academy in Newport News, Va., was added to the 2013-2014 list of Partnership Response in Manufacturing Education (PRIME) programs for the upcoming school year. Only 11 schools across the country were added this year.

    PRIME is a program developed by the SME Education Foundation to prepare students for manufacturing careers by advancing education in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) subjects. It employs a community-based, real-world approach to education, forging partnerships between schools, higher education institutions, companies and the community.

    To become part of the PRIME program, a school must have an exemplary manufacturing curriculum that has been in place for at least three years. The program must include both academic and hands-on fabrication instruction; access to local colleges with the opportunity to participate in postsecondary programs; and access to local manufacturing companies for company tours, job shadowing and mentoring opportunities.

    PRIME is part of SME’s initiative to support the reshoring of manufacturing jobs to the U.S. and ensure we have a strong pipeline of skilled manufacturing workers to support future industry needs.

    Denbigh High School’s Aviation Academy offers a four-year magnet program that prepares students for careers in engineering, aviation and electronics. Students take a number of classes at the Newport News/Williamsburg International Airport, including an FAA Pilot Ground School course. The academy provides students with cutting-edge electronics and technology equipment, and students are encouraged to pursue college dual enrollment opportunities. 

    Denbigh High School’s Aviation Academy is another example of Virginia’s exemplary secondary education system, preparing graduates to enter the manufacturing workforce or pursue more advanced degrees at the Commonwealth’s leading higher education institutions. To learn more, click here.

    Orbital Sciences Completes Launch from Virginia to the International Space Station

    Thursday, 19 September 2013 14:00 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    At 10:58 a.m. yesterday morning, Orbital Sciences successfully completed the second launch of its Antares rocket and Cygnus spacecraft from Pad-OA of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport (MARS) at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility on the Eastern Shore of Virginia...

    At 10:58 a.m. yesterday morning, Orbital Sciences successfully completed the second launch of its Antares rocket and Cygnus spacecraft from Pad-OA of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport (MARS) at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility on the Eastern Shore of Virginia.

    This mission is the first time a spacecraft launched from Virginia will visit the International Space Station.

    Antares will deliver the Cygnus spacecraft along with 1,300 pounds of food, clothing and other cargo to the Expedition 37 crew on the International Space Station. 

    The Cygnus spacecraft is scheduled to arrive at the International Space Station on Sunday, September 22. Prior to its arrival, Cygnus will perform a series of tests and maneuvers to demonstrate its readiness to rendezvous with the space station. On Sunday, the crew of Expedition 37 will operate the station’s 57-foot robotic arm to grapple Cygnus and maneuver it into the docking station.

    The purpose of this mission is to demonstrate the capabilities and readiness of Orbital Sciences’ cargo delivery system as part of its Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) program with NASA. Orbital Sciences successfully completed the inaugural test flight of Antares and Cygnus in April.

    Subsequently, Orbital Sciences will carry out eight resupply missions through 2016, delivering approximately 20,000 kilograms of cargo to the International Space Station as part of its $1.9 billion Commercial Resupply Services contract with NASA.

    These resupply missions will aid the crews of the International Space Station in carrying out scientific experiments in a microgravity research lab.

    Following the historic LADEE launch just over a week ago, Virginia’s leadership in space exploration is evident. Through the MARS facility, Virginia offers one of only four commercial sites approved by the FAA for orbital space launches.

    To learn more about Virginia’s thriving aerospace industry, click here.

    Orbital Sciences' Antares rocket and Cygnus spacecraft launch from Pad-OA of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport (MARS) at the NASA Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia.  Photo color-enhanced and courtesy of NASA/Bill Ingalls.

    The MACH37 Cyber Accelerator Opens in Herndon, Virginia

    Tuesday, 17 September 2013 16:10 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    Virginia’s new MACH37 Cyber Accelerator recently opened at the Center for Innovative Technology (CIT) in Herndon, Va., just five months after the announcement of its creation...

    Virginia’s new MACH37 Cyber Accelerator recently opened at the Center for Innovative Technology (CIT) in Herndon, Va., just five months after the announcement of its creation.

    The MACH37 accelerator program is designed to capitalize on Virginia’s expertise in the cybersecurity industry and help launch additional start-up companies developing innovative technology in this area.

    The first five companies selected for this program are Cypherpath, Key Cybersecurity Inc., Pierce Global Threat Intelligence, CyberLingua, and Sikernes.

    These companies will participate in two 90-day sessions. At the beginning of the first session, they will receive seed funding, followed by introductions to a network of cybersecurity experts and investors to help mentor and develop their products and technology. 

    At the end of the first 90-day session, the companies will go before a professional panel on Demo Day. If the presentation is successful, selected companies will receive additional funding and be allowed to participate in the second 90-day session.

    The MACH37 Cyber Accelerator is modeled after the Y-Combinator, an accelerator program in Silicon Valley that has helped develop more than 460 companies. The MACH37 program helps cybersecurity entrepreneurs bridge the gap between idea generation and commercialization. 

    The program is named after the escape velocity of Mach 37, the minimum velocity needed to launch passed the earth’s gravitational field.

    MACH37’s location at CIT is in the hub of the Dulles Technology Corridor, providing early stage companies access to a solid pipeline of high-tech employees.

    In addition, CIT is partnering with Virginia Tech to develop a cyber test range available to MACH37 companies. This remotely-accessible test center will be located nearby at Virginia Tech’s Hume Center for National Security and Technology in Arlington, Va.

    The MACH37 Cyber Accelerator is another shining example of how Virginia’s public and private institutions partner to create an innovate environment for entrepreneurs to create new products and technology. 

    To learn more about Virginia’s pro-business research and development opportunities, click here.

    Governor McDonnell meets with members of the cybersecurity community during the MACH37 Cyber Accelerator grand opening event at CIT in Herndon, Va.

    First Deep Space Mission Launches from Virginia’s Wallops Flight Facility

    Monday, 9 September 2013 17:03 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    At approximately 11:27 p.m. on Friday, September 6, NASA, Orbital Sciences and the Virginia Space Flight Authority launched the LADEE (Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer) Mission from Virginia’s Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport (MARS) Pad OB at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility on Virginia’s Eastern Shore...

    At approximately 11:27 p.m. on Friday, September 6, NASA, Orbital Sciences and the Virginia Space Flight Authority launched the LADEE (Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer) Mission from Virginia’s Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport (MARS) Pad OB at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility on Virginia’s Eastern Shore.

    The LADEE Mission accomplishes a number of firsts—it is the first deep space mission to launch from the Wallops Flight Facility, as well as the first payload to launch on the U.S. Air Force’s Minotaur V rocket. The Minotaur V launch vehicle was built by Virginia company Orbital Sciences. 

    The LADEE spacecraft was constructed using Modular Common Spacecraft Bus Architecture, representing a departure from custom design towards assembly production and multi-use design in order to reduce costs.

    Upon completing three phasing orbits around the earth, the LADEE spacecraft will enter the moon’s orbit through a three-minute Lunar Orbit Insertion maneuver that involves firing the spacecraft’s onboard propellant for approximately three minutes.

    After being captured by the moon’s gravitational field, LADEE will orbit around the moon for a 100-day science phase to collect data and study the lunar atmosphere. The moon’s atmosphere is classified as a surface boundary exosphere, a thin layer that is theorized to be the most common type of atmosphere in the universe.

    Scientists hope to determine the density, composition and variability of the moon’s atmosphere, as well as learn more about the lunar dust environment. Knowledge gained through this mission can be extrapolated to the atmosphere of other planets, including Earth.

    With another Antares mission expected to launch in mid-September from the MARS facility, Virginia remains at the forefront of U.S. space exploration. MARS is one of only four commercial sites authorized by the FAA for orbital space launches, and offers an ideal trajectory for earth orbit insertion.

    To learn more about Virginia’s burgeoning aerospace industry, click here.

    The LADEE Mission launches from Virginia’s Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility on September 6. Photo courtesy of NASA/Carla Cioffi.

    Service Center Metals Celebrates 10-year Anniversary and Expansion

    Thursday, 5 September 2013 12:46 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    Service Center Metals recently celebrated 10 years of doing business in Prince George County, Va. The ceremony, attended by Lieutenant Governor Bill Bolling, included a ground-breaking celebration for a second plant at the SouthPoint Business Park location...

    Service Center Metals recently celebrated 10 years of doing business in Prince George County, Va. The ceremony, attended by Lieutenant Governor Bill Bolling, included a ground-breaking celebration for a second plant at the SouthPoint Business Park location.

    Service Center Metals was founded in 2002 by three former Reynolds Metals executives to produce aluminum extruded products. As its name implies, Service Center Metals has chosen to focus exclusively on a unique niche—service center customers. 

    After weathering the ups and downs of the last 10 years, the company now boasts more than 120 employees and $145 million in revenue. Since its opening, Service Center Metals has produced more than 635 million pounds of extrusions.

    The company’s expansion includes a compact remelt plant that will be located adjacent to its extrusion plant. Currently, Service Center Metals must ship its aluminum scrap to and from a third-party provider to be remelted. Bringing this process in-house will allow the company to better recycle its scrap materials, as well as serve its customers more quickly and in an environmentally-friendly way.

    As a home-grown manufacturing company, Service Center Metals is a strong example of the success entrepreneurs experience when they start a business in the Commonwealth. To learn more about Virginia’s innovative business environment, click here.

    Lieutenant Governor Bill Bolling (left center) joins company and local officials at the Service Center Metals ground-breaking ceremony in Prince George County, Va.

    2013 ALEC-Laffer State Economic Competitiveness Index Ranks Virginia No. 5 in Economic Outlook

    Wednesday, 21 August 2013 16:23 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    In its sixth edition of Rich States, Poor States, the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) recognized Virginia at No. 5 in its 2013 Economic Outlook ranking...

    In its sixth edition of Rich States, Poor States, the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) recognized Virginia at No. 5 in its 2013 Economic Outlook ranking.

    The Economic Outlook category measures how a state is expected to perform in the future based on 15 policy areas controlled at the state level. The study points out the direct correlation between policy decisions and a state’s level of economic competitiveness.

    Virginia has historically performed strongly in the Economic Outlook category—in five out of the last six years the Commonwealth has scored in the top five.

    Virginia was the only state in the mid-Atlantic to break the top 10.

    Rich State, Poor States highlights some of Virginia’s pro-growth policies that enabled it to achieve a top ranking. The Commonwealth’s pro-growth tax policies, fairness of its legal system, low workers’ compensation costs and right-to-work status were among the reasons Virginia’s economic outlook remains strong.

    In addition, Virginia offers companies a corporate tax rate of six percent that remains unchanged since 1972, electricity costs below the national average, and the second lowest unemployment insurance tax rate in the nation.

    Virginia has been providing companies with the right location and resources to succeed for more than 400 years. To learn why the Commonwealth continues to receive top accolades, click here.

    VEDP Launches ‘Going Global’ Initiative for Defense Companies

    Tuesday, 13 August 2013 14:45 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    Today, VEDP announced the launch of its ‘Going Global’ initiative as part of its strategy to help Virginia defense companies mitigate the effects of sequestration...

    Today, VEDP announced the launch of its ‘Going Global’ initiative as part of its strategy to help Virginia defense companies mitigate the effects of sequestration.

    Sequestration is the name for the automatic federal spending cuts that began on March 1 as part of the Budget Control Act of 2011, enacted by Congress to resolve the U.S. debt-ceiling crisis.

    The impact of Sequestration has been less severe than expected—Department of Defense contracts decreased from $56.9 billion in FY2011 to $51.5 billion in FY2012. However, the Commonwealth is the top state for DoD contracts, raising concerns that lost contracts could results in lower revenues for Virginia companies unless they can find new customers.

    As part of its sequestration mitigation strategy, VEDP is working with Virginia defense companies to help them find those new customers overseas. The receipt of nearly $2 million in federal and state funds will allow VEDP to augment some of its most successful programs already underway within the International Trade division. 

    For example, defense companies will be able to utilize VEDP’s Global Network team of in-country consultants from more than 55 countries. Market research services include compiling background information, identifying potential distributors, conducting due diligence, arranging matchmaking appointments with potential partners and customers, assessing competition, and helping companies understand the regulatory environment.
     
    VEDP will be able to assist companies with export compliance. Virginia companies participating in this program will receive an export compliance analysis, including guidance on completing a Commodities Jurisdiction Analysis and submitting the required paperwork to the Department of State in compliance with International Traffic in Arms Regulations.

    The grant will also allow companies to enhance their marketing and digital presence to target foreign markets through website translation and search engine optimization.

    VEDP recently released an export guide for defense companies titled Export Opportunities for Virginia’s Defense Industry. The guide outlines regulations, processes and strategies specific to the defense industry, and contains marketing and sales best practices for both new and experienced exporters. 

    VEDP’s International Trade division offers a wide variety of programs to help Virginia companies succeed in the global marketplace. To learn more, click here.

    Virginia Receives Numerous Top Rankings from Business Facilities Magazine

    Friday, 9 August 2013 10:35 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    Once again, Virginia received a number of top rankings in Business Facilities’ 2013 State Rankings Report. The Commonwealth was ranked No. 5 for Best Business Climate and No. 8 for Economic Growth Potential...

    Once again, Virginia received a number of top rankings in Business Facilities’ 2013 State Rankings Report. The Commonwealth was ranked No. 5 for Best Business Climate and No. 8 for Economic Growth Potential.

    The strength of Virginia’s workforce and education system was recognized through a No. 8 ranking for Best Education Climate and a No. 9 in the Employment Leaders category.

    A number of Virginia’s key industries were also touted by the study. Virginia was ranked No. 4 in the Data Center category. Data center investment has grown at a rapid pace in the Commonwealth due to Virginia’s plentiful high-tech workforce, substantial broadband infrastructure, and low-cost environment. In 2012, Virginia saw more than $1 billion in investment in this sector.

    Virginia was ranked No. 7 in the Aerospace/Defense Industry Leaders category. This comes as no surprise, as the Commonwealth is the No. 1 state for Department of Defense contracts and is home to a number of global aerospace and defense companies due to its strengths in the high-tech and manufacturing spaces, strong military presence and close proximity to federal customers. Virginia also offers one of only four commercial sites authorized by the FAA for orbital space launch.

    Often referred to as the “Energy Capital of the East Coast,” Virginia was recognized as a Biofuels Leader with a No. 7 ranking. The Commonwealth has seen a number of announcements in this sector—Enviva is currently completing construction on a 454,000-metric-ton wood pellet manufacturing facility in Southampton County. The company will utilize Southern Virginia’s rich wood basket, seasoned labor force, and proximity to the Port of Chesapeake to provide biomass for its international customers.

    In addition, three Virginia localities were recognized in the Business Facilities Metro Rankings Report. Prince George County was rated No. 7 for Economic Growth Potential, due in part to expansions at Ft. Lee, Rolls-Royce and the Commonwealth Center for Advanced Manufacturing (CCAM). 

    Newport News and Norfolk were ranked No. 2 and No. 9, respectively, as Logistics Leaders (Ports) for their proximity to the international Port of Virginia. Offering access to 250 ports in more than 100 overseas locations, the Port of Virginia is the only U.S. East Coast location able to handle post-Panamax vessels as first port of call.

    Virginia continues to receive top accolades because the Commonwealth offers the location and resources businesses need to succeed. To learn why companies have prospered in Virginia for more than 400 years, click here.

    Nine Virginia Schools Make Forbes 2013 America’s Top 200 Colleges Report

    Thursday, 1 August 2013 16:30 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    Once again, Virginia colleges and universities made a strong showing on the Forbes 2013 America’s Top Colleges list...

    Once again, Virginia colleges and universities made a strong showing on the Forbes 2013 America’s Top Colleges list.

    Nine Virginia institutions were ranked in the Top 200 in the Overall Category: Washington and Lee University (No. 21), University of Virginia (No. 29), College of William and Mary (No. 44), Virginia Military Institute (No. 87), University of Richmond (No. 88), Virginia Tech (No. 110), James Madison University (No. 168), Hampden-Sydney College (No. 189), and George Mason University (No. 197).

    Virginia schools also stood out in a number of categories. Washington and Lee University was ranked No. 20 on the Best Private Colleges list, and James Madison University came in at No. 21 on the Best Value Colleges List.

    Three Virginia schools made the Top 25 in the Best Public Colleges category. University of Virginia was ranked No. 4, College of William and Mary was ranked No. 9, and Virginia Military Institute came in at No. 17.

    What is unique about this ranking is that Forbes focuses on ROI and what students get out of their college experience. Forbes looks at five areas to determine its rankings—student satisfaction scores, post-graduate success, student debt, graduation rates and nationally recognized awards.

    Virginia’s higher education system currently includes more than 450,000 students enrolled at institutions ranging from 15 comprehensive public institutions, eight of which offer doctoral programs, more than 50 private accredited four-year colleges and universities, and 23 public community colleges.

    The quality of Virginia’s workforce is often cited as a critical advantage by companies in the Commonwealth, and with a world-class higher education system, Virginia is poised to maintain a strong pipeline of skilled workers.

    To learn how Virginia’s premier higher education system is preparing a skilled workforce for the future, click here.

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    About VEDP

    Virginia Economic Development Partnership is the Best State for Business

    The Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP), a state authority created by the Virginia General Assembly to better serve those seeking a prime business location and increased trade opportunities, provides confidential site selection and international trade services. VEDP's mission: To enhance the quality of life and raise the standard of living for all Virginians, in collaboration with Virginia communities, through aggressive business recruitment, expansion assistance, and trade development, thereby expanding the tax base and creating higher-income employment opportunities.

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    Cybersecurity Industry Surges Ahead in Virginia

    Thursday, 12 May 2016 10:46 by Info@YesVirginia.org

    It’s Business Appreciation Month in Virginia, and we’re celebrating by highlighting one of the Commonwealth’s top industries, cybersecurity.

    With its close proximity to Washington, D.C., Virginia is part of the nation’s Cyber Capital. As the hub of leading-edge intelligence technology, Virginia serves as a fertile ground for the growing cybersecurity industry. Key federal agencies involved with cybersecurity along with the nation’s leading cyber companies, such as Booz Allen Hamilton, General Dynamics, Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman Corp. are located in Virginia.

    The Commonwealth is at the center of the IT industry, with 70 percent of the world’s internet traffic passing through Virginia.

    On the heels of California, Virginia has the second highest concentration of technology workers in the nation, with nearly 10 percent of the state’s workforce employed by the information technology sector, according to Cyberstates 2015. As a result, Virginia is home to the headquarters of nearly 40 of the Washington Technology Top 100 federal contracting companies.

    Reston’s Carahsoft is one of the most successful, fastest growing technology solution providers in the U.S. Founded in 2004, Carahsoft helps government agencies find the best possible technology solution at the best possible value.

    NCS Technologies, headquartered in Gainesville, designs, manufactures, distributes and supports its products from a single location for clients including federal agencies, healthcare and schools. Since its founding in 1996, NCS Technologies has become a leading domestic producer of computers, servers and storage systems.

    As part of Virginia Business Appreciation Month, cybersecurity represents the high-growth and technological innovation that is alive and well in the Commonwealth. To learn why these companies have found success in Virginia, click here.

     

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    Virginia Economic Development Partnership is the Best State for Business

    The Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP), a state authority created by the Virginia General Assembly to better serve those seeking a prime business location and increased trade opportunities, provides confidential site selection and international trade services. VEDP's mission: To enhance the quality of life and raise the standard of living for all Virginians, in collaboration with Virginia communities, through aggressive business recruitment, expansion assistance, and trade development, thereby expanding the tax base and creating higher-income employment opportunities.

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    YesVirginia Business Blog | All posts tagged 'Virginia Jobs Investment Program'

    Virginia Rises to Second in Atlantic Region in Annual Workforce Development Rankings

    Wednesday, 1 February 2017 14:25 by Info@YesVirginia.org

    Virginia rose from fourth to second in the Atlantic region in a recent analysis of state workforce development activities conducted by Site Selection Magazine.

    Site Selection’s third annual state workforce development rankings provide a general sense of which states, in a given region, are devoting sufficient or superior resources to preparing their workforces for current and future employment. The analysis looked at states’ commitment to skills development as measured by their spending on workforce development, K-12 preparation and the number of working-age adults deemed “career-ready.”

    Among the eight ranked states, Virginia scored ahead of highly competitive states like Florida, North Carolina, Maryland, and Delaware, and tied with South Carolina.

    “Virginia’s improved ranking is further evidence that we’re making significant progress toward building a 21st century workforce,” said Governor McAuliffe. “We know that workforce is the number one factor companies evaluate when making a decision to locate a new facility or expand their existing business.  We’re pleased to see our position improve relative to our regional competitors and will continue our efforts to assure our position as a leader in workforce development and education.”

    Virginia offers customized recruiting and training services through the Virginia Jobs Investment Program (VJIP). To learn more about this economic development incentive, click here.

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    The Virginia Jobs Investment Program Celebrates Its 50th Anniversary

    Wednesday, 23 December 2015 13:46 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    The Virginia Jobs Investment Program celebrates its 50th anniversary this year. Created in 1965 as part of the Industrial Training division of the Virginia Community College System, the program provides consultative services and funding to companies creating new jobs or experiencing technological change.

    The Virginia Jobs Investment Program celebrates its 50th anniversary this year.

    Created in 1965 as part of the Industrial Training division of the Virginia Community College System, the program provides consultative services and funding to companies creating new jobs or experiencing technological change.

    VJIP is state-funded, demonstrating Virginia’s commitment to enhancing job opportunities for its citizens. It is estimated that VJIP has supported more than 2,500 projects, over 365,600 jobs and $29 billion in capital investment within its 50 years.

    “For five decades, the Virginia Jobs Investment Program has continuously improved the professional delivery of services that positively impact our businesses’ most important resource—their labor pool. We are confident that VJIP, along with its higher education and workforce system partners, will continue to play an integral role in connecting growing businesses with Virginia’s talent for the next five decades to come,” said Governor McAuliffe.

    VJIP was moved to the Virginia Department of Economic Development in 1985, and then to the Virginia Department of Business Assistance in 1998. In July 2014, the Virginia Economic Development Partnership became the administrator of the program, where it is now more closely aligned with Virginia’s economic development strategies and corporate outreach in an efficient way to partner with allies and serve companies more effectively.

    Working closely with company personnel, the Virginia Jobs Investment Program offers consulting services at no charge, in addition to direct funding to offset eligible companies’ recruitment and training costs.

    Assistance in any of the programs offered by VJIP is eligible to projects that create basic employment for the Commonwealth, as basic employment brings new income into the state, stimulates additional employment, and is the basis for further economic growth. These businesses or functions must directly or indirectly derive more than 50% of their revenues from out of state sources, as determined by VJIP.

    For more information on VJIP, please visit http://www.yesvirginia.org/AssetRich/VJIP.

    The VJIP team celebrates its 50th anniversary during the December VEDA meeting.

    Magnets USA Celebrates 25 Years and a New Facility in Virginia

    Friday, 27 March 2015 16:57 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    Magnets USA recently celebrated 25 years in the Roanoke Valley region of Virginia. The company also hosted a ribbon-cutting ceremony for its new building in Vinton, Va...

    Magnets USA recently celebrated 25 years in the Roanoke Valley region of Virginia. The company also hosted a ribbon-cutting ceremony for its new building in Vinton, Va.

    Magnets USA moved from nearby Roanoke City into the former Grumman Fire Truck Corp. location, a newly-renovated, climate-controlled, 45,000-square-foot building. The grand opening event featured fire trucks previously manufactured at the Grumman building to commemorate its history.

    The new facility will provide 70 percent more production space and allow the company to add 25 new jobs to its current workforce of 60. VEDP’s Virginia Jobs Investment Program is assisting the company with training funds for the new jobs.

    Founded in 1990, the company began selling adhesive materials that magnetized business cards. Today, Magnets USA produces more than 20 million magnetized marketing products each year, including calendars, sports and event schedules, banners and business cards. 

    Virginia’s premier business environment has allowed the company to successfully expand its customer base to include the real estate market, Chicago Bears, Salem Red Sox, Kid Rock Enterprises, Burning Man, Floyd Fest, the American Quilter’s Society and local schools.

    Magnets USA has also worked with VEDP’s international trade team to increase global sales. The company currently exports to Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean.

    The company’s history and success in Virginia is another example of the pro-business environment and resources the Commonwealth provides for growing companies. To learn more, click here.

    The Magnets USA team prepares to cut the ribbon at the company’s grand opening ceremony for its renovated facility in Vinton, Va. Photo courtesy of Magnets USA.

    VEDP Welcomes VJIP to the Team

    Thursday, 3 July 2014 09:50 by Info@YesVirginia.org
    It’s official — at the beginning of our fiscal year, July 1, the Virginia Jobs Investment Program became part of the VEDP team. House bill 932 passed by the Virginia General Assembly in in the spring 2014 special session moved the administration of VJIP to VEDP to further align Virginia’s job incentive programs...

    It’s official — at the beginning of our fiscal year, July 1, the Virginia Jobs Investment Program became part of the VEDP team. House bill 932 passed by the Virginia General Assembly in in the spring 2014 special session moved the administration of VJIP to VEDP to further align Virginia’s job incentive programs.

    In fiscal year 2014, VJIP was involved in 96 percent of the projects that VEDP completed.

    VJIP is the second oldest incentive in the Commonwealth and was established in 1965. According to VJIP interim director Frank Strickler, “This is a homecoming for us. VEDP’s predecessor organization and ours were originally joined under the Department of Economic Development until 1996 when VEDP was formed and we were moved to the Department of Business Assistance. We have worked closely with VEDP’s business expansion and business attraction managers for years, so it’s great to be under one roof again.”

    VJIP is charged with marketing and managing a state-funded grant that helps companies train their employees. Companies can qualify for the incentive in any of three categories: new and existing business expansions that create jobs, small businesses that create new jobs, and workforce retraining to upgrade the skills of existing employees.

    Due to the flexibility of the three categories, a wide range of companies can qualify for the incentive. VJIP serves both large and small businesses in a variety of industries. VJIP project managers also provide free consulting services to client companies, helping them find solutions for their recruiting and training issues.

    The VJIP grant is a performance-driven incentive distributed on a pay-as-you-go basis after each employee has been on the job for more than 90 days. VJIP managers work with the company to develop a training outline and budget, so that the client has skin in the game. Companies can receive up to 50 percent reimbursement for qualified recruiting and training costs. Due to the multiplier effect, the incentive usually nets a 100 percent ROI (return on investment) in six months.

    VJIP is one of the longstanding examples of incentives that attract companies to Virginia’s pro-business environment. To learn more about VJIP, click here.

    Members of the VJIP team include (back row) Frank Strickler, Tre Akins, (front row) Lea Lofty, Brenda Young and Debbie Melvin. 

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    Virginia Economic Development Partnership is the Best State for Business

    The Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP), a state authority created by the Virginia General Assembly to better serve those seeking a prime business location and increased trade opportunities, provides confidential site selection and international trade services. VEDP's mission: To enhance the quality of life and raise the standard of living for all Virginians, in collaboration with Virginia communities, through aggressive business recruitment, expansion assistance, and trade development, thereby expanding the tax base and creating higher-income employment opportunities.

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