April 21, 1998

Lila White
(804) 692-3110

Jill Lawrence
(804) 371-0049
Governor Gilmore Hails Two Expansions For Hampton Roads
-- GEICO increases employment by 2,500; Gateway 2000 adds 250 - -

Richmond - Virginia Governor Jim Gilmore today praised decisions by two major companies in the Hampton Roads area to create more new jobs for Virginians. GEICO, one of the fastest growing automobile insurers in the country, announced that it will more than double its employment at its Virginia Beach branch office by creating 2,500 new jobs. Gateway 2000, the nation's leading global marketer of personal computers, announced it will add 250 technical support employees at its manufacturing and technical support call center in the City of Hampton.

"GEICO and Gateway 2000 are two of our Commonwealth's outstanding corporate citizens, and we're thrilled they chose to reinvest in Virginia -- a great vote of confidence in our people and positive job growth policies," said Governor Gilmore.

GEICO insures more than 4.4 million autos nationwide, has 11,500 associates, and is the fourth largest insurer in Virginia. It has five regional offices including one in Fredericksburg, and three other branch offices. GEICO's expansion will occur at the company's new sales and service center in the Virginia Beach Corporate Landing Business Park. Virginia defeated New York, Pennsylvania and Ohio for the center in January.

"We need more employees and more space to handle our unprecedented growth, and Virginia Beach is the ideal place to do this," said Tony Nicely, President and Chief Executive Officer of GEICO.

Gateway 2000 currently employs 1,300 people in Hampton and this expansion will add 250 technical support positions to assist with the company's customer service responsibilities. Staff at the center receive calls from customers and troubleshoot their computer problems via telephone.

"The positive business climate and high-caliber employees in Hampton make this site perfect for continuing to grow this part of the business," said Eric Larsen, Vice President of Global Technical Support for Gateway 2000.

The Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP), the Hampton Roads Economic Development Alliance and the City of Virginia Beach Department of Economic Development assisted GEICO with its decision. VEDP, the Virginia Peninsula Economic Development Council and the City of Hampton assisted Gateway 2000 with its expansion. The Virginia Department of Business Assistance will provide workforce training services to both companies.

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