FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 18, 2015
Chris Stadelman, 304-558-4977
Catherine Zacchi, 304-957-9340
Governor Tomblin Releases May Edge Business Report
CHARLESTON, W.Va. - Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin today released the West Virginia Edge Business Report, highlighting the state’s economic progress. The May 2015 report features projects and announcements from businesses, both large and small, that play a critical role in the Mountain State’s continued economic growth.
|Governor Tomblin leading trade mission to Japan
Trip marks the 25th anniversary of West Virginia's Nagoya Office
Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin is leading a business mission to Japan May 12 through 21. The trip also marks the 25th anniversary of the West Virginia Department of Commerce's Nagoya Office. The mission's goals are to celebrate and strengthen the ties the state has established with investors over the past 25 years and to attract new business investments to West Virginia.
"We understand great business is built on great relationships, and I'm grateful for the vision of Gov. Gaston Caperton, who with then-U.S. Senator Jay Rockefeller led the first West Virginia investment mission to the Chubu region, the center of Japan's manufacturing hub," Gov. Tomblin said. "We're proud of the strong relationships we've built over the years, treasure the friendships we've made and look forward to ongoing productive discussions to support job growth and investment in the Mountain State."
Gov. Tomblin is joined on the mission by former Gov. Gaston Caperton, who authorized the opening of the Nagoya office during his first term. Since the office opened, the state has seen millions of dollars in investments from Japanese companies. Today, 20 Japanese firms employ more than 3,000 hardworking West Virginians.
The mission's itinerary includes stops in Nagoya, Yokohama and Tokyo. Outreach efforts include
exhibiting and hosting a seminar at JSAE (Japan's largest automotive trade show), the governor speaking to the Nagoya Chamber of Commerce and nearly a dozen private meetings with both current and prospective investors. For the first time, the governor also will attend a reception with the West Virginia University Alumni Association's Japan Chapter and its 75 members.
Graphic from West Virginia exhibit booth
This marks Gov. Tomblin's second trade mission to Japan. Since his visit in 2012, Japanese companies have announced seven expansions to their operations in West Virginia totaling $144 million in new investments and 231 new jobs
|Hino Motors announces $8 million expansion in Wood County
Hino Motors Manufacturing U.S.A. Inc. plans to invest up to $8 million in its truck assembly plant in Williamstown. The company will add 30,000 square feet to the existing structure, as well as a dedicated training facility and a stand-alone quality control testing center. The expansion is expected to eventually add up to 50 new employees to the company’s current 225-person workforce. Construction is scheduled for completion in fall 2015.
Shown in front of Hino headquarters in Japan: West Virginia Governor Earl Ray Tomblin (center) led a business mission to Japan in 2012
Hino received approval to lease adjoining property owned by the West Virginia Economic Development Authority (WVEDA). The WVEDA approved the lease during its March meeting. The property consists of 11.8 acres. The lease runs through March 31, 2018, and includes an option to buy. Hino will make property improvements such as adding parking spaces, moving light poles and building a berm between the facility and the adjacent neighborhood.
|WVU gets federal grant for nanotechnology research into green energy
West Virginia University will receive a $496,168 federal grant to conduct nanotechnology research into green energy. The grant was awarded by The USDA’s Agriculture and Food Research Initiative Nanotechnology for Agriculture and Food Systems. Nanotechnology deals with matter smaller than the thickness of a human hair.
The WVU researchers intend to develop a process that uses plants such as eastern white pine to make highly ordered mesoporous carbon (HOMC). The HOMC materials have nanometer size pores that can store hydrogen in fuel cells.
The focus on plant-based resources will add value to West Virginia’s renewable forest resources, said WVU team leader Jingxin Wang, professor of wood science and technology in WVU’s Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design.
|Monongalia County company wins bid for major foreign military sale
FCX Systems Inc. is a prime contractor for the supply of mobile ground power units
which are part of the largest foreign arms sale in U.S. history. The Morgantown-based company won the bid to produce 110 custom ground power units for fighter aircraft provided from a major domestic original equipment manufacturer. The aircraft will be operated by a Middle Eastern ally. The FCX units are scheduled for delivery through 2018. FCX manufactures solid-state frequency converters and ground power support for the commercial, military, industrial, and ship shore markets all over the world.
|US Small Business Administration announces West Virginia Small Business Week award winners
The U.S. Small Business Administration's West Virginia District Office recently announced its 2015 small business week award winners along with the state's top small business SBA lenders.
The winners will be recognized formally during a noon luncheon May 27 at Canaan Resort and Conference Center in Davis.
The honors include a national-level award for KeyLogic Systems. This is the first time a West Virginia business has received the National Prime Contractor award from the Small Business Administration:
National Prime Contractor of the Year
Jon Hammock – KeyLogic Systems Inc., Morgantown, WV 26505
The state winners are:
West Virginia Small Business Person of the Year: Jeannette L. King, Strategic Resolution Experts Inc., Martinsburg
West Virginia Family-Owned Small Business of the Year: Rocco Muriale, Muriale's Restaurant, Fairmont
West Virginia Entrepreneurial Success: Justin Seibert, Direct Online Marketing, Wheeling
West Virginia Financial Champion of the Year: Jason William Shepherd, Peoples Bank, Huntington Branch, Huntington
West Virginia Minority Small Business Champion of the Year: Sandra Moss, Black Business Association Supporting Entrepreneurs, Saint Albans
West Virginia Veteran Small Business Champion of the Year: Marsha Hopkins, Excalibur Services LLC, Scott Depot
West Virginia Women in Business Champion of the Year: Terri Cutright, formerly of Main Street Morgantown, Morgantown
West Virginia Community Bank of the Year: MVB Bank — approved seven SBA-guaranteed loans in West Virginia totaling nearly $900,000
West Virginia Lender of the Year: Huntington National Bank — approved 78 SBA-guaranteed loans worth more than $12 million
|WVDO promotes state industries through trade events
Events on the West Virginia Development Office schedule for May include:
The International Division schedule for missions abroad in 2015 include:
- AISTech 2015, May 4 - 7, in Cleveland, is sponsored by the Association for Iron and Steel. AISTech features technologies from all over the world that help steel producers to compete more effectively in today’s global market. AISTech 2015 will host ICSTI 2015 — The 7th International Congress on the Science and Technology of Ironmaking. The event is expected to draw more than 8,000 attendees.
- American Institute of Architects (AIA) Convention 2015, May 14 - 16, Atlanta, draws influential architecture and design professionals from around in the world interested in products and services such as software and technology, energy efficiency, building systems, finishes, lighting, stone and tile and restoration.
Check the website worldtradewv.org for updates or contact the West Virginia Development Office at 304-558-2234.
- Canadian Institute of Mining Expo, Montreal, Canada, May 9 - 13
- Conference & Trade Mission Central America, Guatemala, June 21 - 26
- Trade Mission, Poland, June 21 - 26
- Trade Winds Africa: Business Development Conference and Trade Mission, South Africa, Angola, Tanzania, Kenya, Mozambique, Ethiopia, Ghana, and Nigeria, Sept. 14 – 21
- Trade Mission, Japan, Oct. 12 - 16
- China Coal and Mining Expo, China, Oct. 29 - Nov. 1
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Governor Tomblin leading trade mission to Japan
Hino Motors announces $8 million expansion in Wood County
WVU gets federal grant for nanotechnology research into green energy
Monongalia County company wins bid for major foreign military sale
US Small Business Administration announces West Virginia Small Business Week award winners
WVDO promotes state industries through trade events
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