Governor Tomblin Releases June Edge Business Report

Published Thursday, June 19, 2014 @ 10:34 AM by (Byron Durham)

June 19, 2014

Chris Stadelman, 304-558-4977
Catherine Zacchi, 304-957-9340

Governor Releases June Edge Business Report

CHARLESTON, W.Va. - Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin today released the West Virginia Edge Business Report. The report documents the state’s economic progress. The June 2014 report highlights projects and related announcements from businesses both large and small that will assist with the creation of new jobs and the preservation of existing jobs.

W.Va. Secretary reports success from Japanese investment mission
Commerce Secretary Keith Burdette meet with officials of Diamond Electric

The West Virginia delegation led by Commerce Secretary Keith Burdette meet with officials of Diamond Electric during the state’s investment mission in Japan.

The state’s investment mission to Japan was a success, reports Commerce Secretary Keith Burdette.

Key objectives of the mission included maintaining relationships with companies already investing in the state and establishing connections with prospective new investors. Japanese companies have invested more than $2.1 billion in the state’s economy and currently employ nearly 2,500 West Virginians.

West Virginia officials met with executives of companies with operations in the state, including KS of West Virginia; Diamond Electric; Toyota; Sanko Electronics; NGK; Kureha; and Nippon Thermostat.

Several of the companies joined the state in exhibiting at the 2014 Automotive Engineering Exposition, May 21 -22, in Yokohama. Participants included Diamond Electric, Nippon Thermostat and Toyota. KS of West Virginia exhibited in its own booth neighboring West Virginia’s.

On May 15, more than 80 members of the West Virginia group attended the Chukeiren (Chubu Economic Federation) event supported by Toyota. Millie Marshall, president of Toyota Motor Manufacturing West Virginia in Buffalo, was the headline speaker. West Virginia participants include representatives from automotive industry businesses.

Permit requests move plans for Wood County cracker plant forward
The company studying the feasibility of building an ethane cracker facility in Wood County has applied for two permits. The Appalachian Shale Cracker Enterprise LLC (ASCENT) has submitted two environmental permitting documents to the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection. The air quality permit and the application to evaluate the property under state’s Voluntary Remediation Program represent an administrative step forward in the study process.
ASCENT is a subsidiary of Odebrecht, based in Brazil. In November 2013, Odebrecht announced plans to consider building a cracker plant and three polyethylene plants in Wood County. Shortly thereafter, the company purchased 363 acres near Parkersburg.
A cracker plant breaks natural gas into valuable components such as ethane, methane, propane and butane. Ethane can be converted into ethylene, a key ingredient in consumer and industrial products.
If the company decides to undertake the project ASCENT is expected to generate thousands of jobs in construction, hundreds of jobs in operating the completed plant and hundreds more in chemical and manufacturing plants that use the separated components.

West Virginia launches nation’s first incubator dedicated to chemistry 
ChemCeption — the nation’s first incubator focused solely on commercializing chemistry-based technology — is now officially open in West Virginia. The new incubator operates from the West Virginia Regional Technology Park in South Charleston.

ChemCeption’s mission is summed up in its tagline ““Bringing Chemistry-Based Technologies to Market.” The incubator serves as an innovation hub for researchers, entrepreneurs, startups, and small companies wanting to market innovative technologies or products involving chemistry, from traditional to green, water to plastics, biotechnology to energy and more.

The ChemCeption project was led by the Chemical Alliance Zone. Strategic partners include TechConnect West Virginia; the Tech Park; Charleston Area Alliance; the Mid-Atlantic Technology, Research & Innovation Center; INNOVA Commercialization Group; West Virginia Small Business Development Center; West Virginia University; Marshall University; the Higher Education Policy Commission; and Robert C. Byrd Institute for Advanced Flexible Manufacturing.

IT company transfers headquarters to Jefferson County 
Broken Mobile™ recently moved its headquarters from northern Virginia to Burr Plaza in Kearneysville, West Virginia. The mobile device solutions company repairs and replaces mobile devices and tablets for the public, as well as corporate and government clients. Broken Mobile™ evaluated six states before selecting West Virginia, citing proximity to Washington, D.C, and the low cost of doing business as key advantages.

Broken Mobile
Although most of company’s 29 full- and part-time employees will transfer to West Virginia, Broken Mobile™ plans to hire technicians and other staff during a job fair May 28 and 29. Job fair location, times and available positions are listed on the company’s website Advance registration is required. To register, email and include name, resume, position(s) sought, and the date and time the applicant will attend. Although Broken Mobile will hire many veterans, non-veterans are encouraged to apply for all positions.

Asphalt engineering breaks ground for lab in Jefferson County

Advanced Asphalt Technologies (AAT), an engineering company that specializes in serving the asphalt paving industry, recently held a groundbreaking ceremony in Burr Business Park in Kearneysville. Construction on the 5,500-square-foot building is expected to be complete by mid-summer 2014. AAT focuses on commercial application of technologies in the design, construction and performance testing of paving materials structures. The employee-owned company’s two engineers and three technicians are relocating from Sterling, Virginia.

Asphalt engineering breaks ground for lab

Photo provided courtesy of Jefferson County Development Authority Dignitaries lending a hand at the ATT groundbreaking are, left to right, Paul Espinosa, West Virginia House of Delegates; Patricia Hubbard, Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce; Joy Lewis, Regional Representative for Governor Early Ray Tomblin; Patsy Nolan, Jefferson County Commission; Tiffany Lawrence, West Virginia House of Delegates; Jane Tabb, Jefferson County Commission; Walt Pellish, Jefferson County Commission; Conrad Hammann, Jefferson County Development Authority (JCDA); Ramon Bonaquist and Bob Bennett, Advanced Asphalt Technologies; Peter Kubic, Kubic Construction; Stephen Stolipher, Jefferson County Planning Commission; John Reisenweber, JCDA; Nicolas Diehl, West Virginia Development Office; Annette Gavin, Jefferson County Convention and Visitors Bureau; and Chuck Ellison, Frontier Communications

Federal SBA honors West Virginia 2014 Small Business Award winners
The U. S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has named several West Virginia business owners as 2014 outstanding entrepreneurs and champions. The SBA West Virginia District Office will honor the state winners May 29 during a ceremony in Morgantown. The top small business lenders in the state will also be honored.

The 2014 West Virginia State Award Winners are:
  • Small Business Person of the Year
    Kenneth Allman - PracticeLink and MountainPlex Properties
    Hinton, WV

  • Exporter of the Year
    Chad Harlan Remp - Wheeling Truck Center

  • Family-Owned Small Business of the Year
    Christopher Alan Wendling - A.F. Wendling, Inc.

  • Young Entrepreneur of the Year
    Bridget Watters Rowsey - Bridget's Dance Academy

  • Veteran Small Business Champion of the Year
    Jeannette King - Strategic Resolution Experts

  • Women in Business Champion of the Year
    Pam Neely

WVEDA approves $4.3 million for four business loans
The West Virginia Economic Development Authority (WVEDA) approved four business loans totaling $4,323,734 during its April and May 2014 meetings:
  • TenX Group LLC, $1,871,505, for improvements and to purchase the land adjacent to the company’s facility in Old Fields, Hardy County. TenX is a private company that provides training services and support for highly specialized areas of Special Operations Forces and intelligence agencies.

  • Conley Fabrication, $800,000, to finance a new building and equipment in Mineral Wells, Wood County. Conley manufactures aluminum, steel and stainless steel truck bodies and semi-trailers.

  • Millwood Southwest Properties, $1,350,000, to purchase land and buildings in Millwood Industrial Park, Jackson County. The newly-formed Millwood Southwest Properties is purchasing the assets of Triple M Partnership. The Triple M real estate holding company owns machinery supplier J&M Industrial, Inc., located in the Jackson County Maritime and Industrial Park.

  • W.A. Wilson and Sons, $302,229, to finance new equipment at its existing facility in Wheeling, Ohio County. W.A. Wilson is a wholesaler distributor of glass and architectural aluminum products. The company currently employs 75 workers.
During its April meeting, WVEDA also approved $11 million to buy the property of FLSmidth USA in the Putnam County Business Park in Fraziers Bottom. The real estate purchased by WVEDA will be leased back to FLSmidth. The company, a wholly-owned subsidiary of FLSmidth & Co based in Denmark, provides equipment and services for the global minerals and cement industry. The company currently has 65 employees.

WVSBDC business coaches earn professional certifications
WVSBDC recognized business coaches who had received certifications in specialized capabilities. Josh Jarrell, Deputy Secretary and General Counsel at West Virginia Department of Commerce, presented awards:

Export and Trade Counseling from Trade Promotion Coordinating Committee and the U.S. Small Business Administration: Beth Ludewig, Sharon Stratton, Justin Gaull and Rob Hinton.

Certified Global Business Professional for knowledge in international trade, issued by the National Association of Small Business International Trade Educators: Amber Wilson, Terry Cyfers and Steve Johnson.

Research Commercialization Course for understanding of innovation, commercialization and tech transfer required to successfully function in industry: Justin Gaull, Sharon Stratton and Steve Johnson.

Federal Acquisition Management for skills regarding managing federal government contracts: Doug Spaulding and Terry Cyfers.

Capital Access Recognition for accessing more than $1 million of capital infusion for their clients: Terry Cyfers, Jim Epling and Bob Marggraf.

The WVSBDC is part of the West Virginia Development Office and creates economic impact through offering entrepreneurs and small businesses cost-effective business coaching and technical assistance. The West Virginia SBDC is funded in part through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration. The WVSBDC is an Accredited Member of America’s SBDC network.

Get the Latest State News First from WV Commerce

View all West Virginia Edge Business Reports.
View the Open for Business Reports archive.
You are receiving this from the West Virginia Department of Commerce. The former Open for Business Report was renamed West Virginia Business Edge in May 2012. Previous issues of Open for Business Report can be viewed online at

W.Va. Secretary reports success from Japanese investment mission

Permit requests move plans for Wood County cracker plant forward

West Virginia launches nation’s first incubator dedicated to chemistry

IT company transfers headquarters to Jefferson County

Asphalt engineering breaks ground for lab in Jefferson County

Federal SBA honors West Virginia 2014 Small Business Award winners

WVEDA approves $4.3 million for four business loans

WVSBDC business coaches earn professional certifications

Quick Links

More about
Business in WV

Why West Virginia

Past Reports