April 23, 1998

Lila White
(804) 692-3110

Jill Lawrence
(804) 371-0049
Governor Gilmore Announces 300 New Jobs for Hampton Roads
-- Mercantile Logistics to locate distribution center in Suffolk -

Richmond - Virginia Governor Jim Gilmore today announced the decision by Mercantile Logistics, Inc., to invest $1.5 million in a warehouse and distribution facility in the City of Suffolk. Mercantile Logistics will create 300 new jobs for Virginians. Employment is expected to grow to 450 within three years.

"Mercantile's decision to locate a distribution center in Virginia attests to the positive business climate of our state," said Governor Gilmore. "Virginia's outstanding intermodal transportation assets continue to position the Commonwealth as a major distribution hub for the East Coast."

Mercantile Logistics, Inc., of Madison, New Jersey, is an international company involved in integrated logistics providing a broad range of transportation solutions for global customers. The company will lease the 92,000-square-foot Commonwealth Storage Building #9 in Suffolk, which will be used for deconsolidation and distribution for major consumer goods retailers.

"We believe that this facility will offer our customers cost efficient distribution capability from the East Coast, complementing our services offered on the West Coast, and internationally," said Clark Brown, President of Mercantile Logistics. "This planned capital investment represents a major step in our strategy to serve our customers' needs. The cooperation with the Commonwealth of Virginia and the local authorities has been excellent."

"Virginia's strategic East Coast location and positive business climate influenced our location decision," said Fred Lauer, General Manager of Mercantile Logistics. "We look forward to future growth and prosperity in Suffolk and the Hampton Roads region."

The Virginia Economic Development Partnership, the Hampton Roads Economic Development Alliance, the Suffolk Department of Economic Development, the Virginia Port Authority, and Harvey Lindsay Real Estate assisted Mercantile with its decision. The Virginia Department of Business Assistance will provide workforce training services.

"We welcome Mercantile Logistics to Suffolk and look forward to a long-term relationship that will bring additional new jobs and new capital investment to our city for years to come," said Suffolk Mayor Thomas Underwood.

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