Sara Lee Activewear
Governor Gilmore Announces 303 New Jobs for Henry County
-Sara Lee Activewear to invest $25 million, Governor approves $1.3 grant to assist County with site p-
Richmond - Governor Jim Gilmore today announced that Sara Lee Activewear, a division of Sara Lee Corporation, is expanding in Henry County. The company will locate in the Patriot Centre in a former Tultex distribution center. By expanding in Henry County, Sara Lee Activewear will retain 254 employees currently working in the county and will create 303 new positions. The jobs will be similar in nature to those of former Tultex employees and will provide opportunities for dislocated workers. Virginia successfully competed with Florida for this investment of $25 million. The company will occupy a former Tultex facility and expand it by 228,000 feet.
"My administration continues to work hard to help get the out-of-work people of Henry County back on their feet with quality jobs. I am proud to provide assistance with workforce training and site preparation to make these 300-plus jobs a reality. Sara Lee Activewear recognizes the value of this area's quality and experienced workforce," Governor Gilmore said. "This expansion is yet another positive step in our efforts to revitalize Henry County's economy." Governor
Gilmore approved a $1.3 million grant from the Governor's Opportunity Fund to assist Henry County with site preparation. The Virginia Economic Development Partnership, the Patrick Henry Development Council and Henry County assisted Sara Lee Activewear with its decision. The Virginia Department of Business Assistance will provide workforce training services. The company is eligible for further tax credits because they are locating in an enterprise zone.
"Henry County as well as the Commonwealth of Virginia will surely benefit from Sara Lee's decision to retain existing jobs while creating new ones too," said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Barry E. DuVal. "The fact that Sara Lee chose to expand in Virginia, as opposed to its other options, is a true testament to the high quality work ethic that exists among Virginians."
Sara Lee Activewear is an internationally recognized leader in the apparel industry, providing a range of choices for casual living for men and women, boys and girls under such well-known brands as Hanes, Hanes Her Way and Just My Size. The company also markets shoes and slippers under the Hanes, Hanes Her Way and L'eggs brands. Chicago-based Sara Lee Corporation is a global consumer packaged goods company with more than $17.5 billion in annual revenues. Sara Lee Activewear is headquartered in Winston-Salem, N.C.
"We are very proud of our experienced and knowledgeable employees in Martinsville and Henry County, and are extremely pleased to be able to expand our operations here and build on their excellence," said Gerald Evans, president and chief executive of Sara Lee Activewear. "The Patriot Centre facility offers us greater efficiency and automation, and a flexibility our previous sites did not," Evans said. "By combining our Virginia and Florida facilities, our productivity will increase dramatically. In order to accomplish this, we had to overcome several challenges to expand the Patriot Centre facility. We especially appreciate the interest Governor Gilmore took in helping arrange solutions. The people of Virginia are very fortunate to have such an advocate for their state."