Gildan Yarns to Create 85 New Jobs in Rockingham County, NC

Gildan Yarns, a yarn-spinning company, will create 85 jobs in Rockingham County, Governor Roy Cooper announced today. The company will invest approximately $5 million to revamp and operate a new yarn spinning mill in Eden.

Rockingham County Commissioner Kevin Berger; President of Gildan Yarns Chuck Ward; NC Secretary of Commerce Tony Copeland; Rockingham County Commissioner Mark Richardson; and Rockingham County Director of Economic Development and Tourism Leigh Cockram.

“Eden and Gildan Yarns have been great economic partners, and it makes sense with their existing presence and the strong workforce that they would expand,” said Governor Cooper.

Gildan Yarns is the yarn spinning division of Gildan, a leading apparel manufacturer headquartered in Montreal, Canada. This new location will be the company’s fifth state-of-the-art yarn spinning mill in North Carolina. Eden is also home to Gildan’s first large scale distribution center.

“We are very pleased to expand our operations in the Eden community and to invest in a new yarn spinning facility,” said Chuck Ward, President of Gildan Yarns. “This will be the company’s seventh yarn spinning facility in the US. We are particularly proud to contribute to creating an additional 85 jobs in Eden in the next year as we open and ramp up our new operation.”

“Gildan Yarns’ decision further solidifies our leadership in the textile industry,” said North Carolina Commerce Secretary Anthony M. Copeland. “North Carolina has more textile manufacturers than any other state and a world-class pipeline of textile talent to continue Gildan’s global operations.”

The North Carolina Department of Commerce led the state’s support for the company’s decision.

Although wages will vary depending on the position, the average for all new positions could reach up to $37,707. The current average annual wage in Rockingham County is $34,716.

A performance-based grant of $250,000 from the One North Carolina Fund will help facilitate Gildan Yarn’s operation in Rockingham County.  The One NC Fund provides financial assistance to local governments to help attract economic investment and to create jobs. Companies receive no money upfront and must meet job creation and capital investment targets to qualify for payment.  All One NC grants require a matching grant from local governments and any award is contingent upon that condition being met.

“Gaining 85 new jobs is great news, and we welcome Gildan Yarns’ expansion in Eden,” said N.C. Senate Leader Phil Berger. “The economy is positioned for more growth like this because of low taxes, an incredible university system, and a top-notch workforce.”

“Gildan Yarns’ investment is a win for everyone,” said N.C. Representative Jerry Carter. “With a strong, capable workforce and great infrastructure, the people of Eden are ready to support Gildan for many years to come.”

In addition to N.C. Commerce and the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina, other key partners in the project include the North Carolina General Assembly, North Carolina Community College System, Rockingham County Board of Commissioners, Rockingham County Economic Development Office and City of Eden.

Manufacturing Week: Spotlight on Stoneville, NC’s Industries

With a population of about 1,200 residents, the Town of Stoneville is Rockingham County, NC’s smallest municipality.  Stoneville has been a center of craftsmanship with an economic base that has historically been in furniture and home furnishings –related industries.

Stoneville’s largest manufacturing employer is Southern Finishing, which has about 200 employees.  As a supplier to the furniture industry, Southern Finishing has been operating in Rockingham County since 1978.  The company manufactures furniture and cabinet components, such as prefinished mouldings, accessories, panels, doors, kitchen and bath cabinet components, and bed rails.  It partners with manufacturers such as American Woodmark, Marsh Furniture, Armstrong Cabinets, Quality Cabinets and Thomasville Furniture.  Southern Finishing has its headquarters and four manufacturing facilities in Stoneville.  In 2018, the company announced an expansion that includes investing over $1.48 million in a 126,000 square-foot building in Stoneville and plans to create more than 50 new jobs.

Home grown company, Glass Dynamics was founded in Stoneville in 1985 and became a subsidiary of Poland-based Press Glass in 2017.   Glass Dynamics began exclusively as a glass fabricator for the furniture industry but transitioned into a leading commercial, residential and architectural glass fabricator. The company previously expanded four times in Rockingham County until it was purchased by Press Glass SA.  Press Glass is the largest independent flat glass processing operation in Europe.  The Stoneville location is the company’s second operation in the United States and has about 130 employees.

SANS Technical Fibers LLC (STF)is a manufacturer of specialty yarns for high specification end-uses. It is a global business and holds leading positions in several targeted niche markets.    The company has a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Stoneville with about 85 employees where it produces a broad range of specialty nylon and air-jet textured yarns.  Over the years, the company has added capabilities to its Stoneville plant to increase its position in the automotive, military and apparel markets in both industrial and textile applications.  Earlier this year, SANS announced a $4.9 million expansion in machinery and equipment and plans to add 25 new jobs. Sans Technical Fibers, LLC, is a wholly-owned subsidiary of AECI LIMITED, a Johannesburg stock exchange listed chemical company. (AFE – JSE).  

Headquartered in Stoneville, TigerTek Industrial Services was established in 1983.  Today it is one of the largest industrial motor repair centers in the region.   The company, which is now onwed by Omnivest, LLC, repairs electric motors, pumps, gearboxes and servo motors that are critical to the continued operation of their customers, which include local manufacturing plants, municipalities (water and wastewater facilities), universities, food plants (dairies, bakeries), plastic and chemical plants, just to name a few.  TigerTek also operates a large machine shop for fabricating precision parts.

When TigerTek got its start, textile companies made up its core customers. TigerTek went against the odds and adapted when textiles moved overseas and automation began to dominate manufacturing. The company took a risk and invested in the knowledge to repair a new technology called “servo motors,” which are highly specialized motors used in automated manufacturing facilities.  Today, TigerTek is one of the largest servo motor repair shops in the U.S. and has about 40 employees.

In 2016, Sutherland Products (makers of Charlie’s Soap environmentally safe cleaning products) completed a major expansion by adding its second location in Rockingham County in Stoneville.  The company purchased a 120,000 square-foot facility in Stoneville that was part of a former furniture plant.  Sutherland Products invested over one million dollars in the Stoneville location, which now houses its corporate offices and distribution center.  The manufacturing of Charlie’s Soap products remains in Mayodan. The family-run business, which began in 1976, has about 20 employees between both locations.

Manufacturing Week: Spotlight on Reidsville, NC’s Industries

The City of Reidsville may be Rockingham County’s second largest municipality, but it ranks as number one when it comes to our largest manufacturing and industrial base.  With an industrial heritage that was based in the tobacco industry, Reidsville has transitioned to include a widely diverse mix of modern manufacturers and international companies.  In fact, many popular consumer branded products are made in Reidsville, NC.  Here are some brief snapshots of just a few of the companies that are part of Team Reidsville.

With about 400 employees, Reidsville’s largest manufacturing employer is Keystone Foods.  The company processes fresh and frozen poultry for popular consumer brands such as McDonald’s.  Now part of the Tyson Foods family, Keystone Foods is headquartered in Pennsylvania with operations in six countries.  The Reidsville facility, which opened in 1980, is one of approximately 25 manufacturing plants operated by the company. 

Israeli wet-wipes manufacturer, Albaad USA, is well on its way to becoming Reidsville’s largest manufacturing employer.   Albaad has about 200 employees at its wet-wipes manufacturing and packaging facility in the Reidsville Industrial Park.   Last year the company announced a major expansion that includes a second facility to produce feminine hygiene products such as sanitary pads and tampons.  Albaad purchased the former Ball plant and opened its Albaad FEM manufacturing facility earlier this year.  The company plans to eventually create about 300 jobs in the new Albaad FEM plant.  Once it’s at full capacity, Albaad will eventually have 500 employees in Reidsville.  

Albaad was the first tenant in the Reidsville Industrial Park in 2004 and this was the company’s first U.S. production facility.  As a world leader in non-woven textiles, Albaad makes private-label and branded products that are sold in more than 35 countries.  The Reidsville Industrial Park facility makes wet-wipes for a variety of uses, including personal, home and automotive care.  Private label wet-wipes brands made in Reidsville include Burt’s Bees and Parent’s Choice.

Headquartered in Reidsville, Global Textile Alliance manufactures bedding and upholstery fabrics that are sold to several major U.S. furniture brands. Established in 2001, the Reidsville plant is home to the company’s corporate headquarters, distribution, design, sales and marketing, finance and quality control divisions. The company has about 300 employees.

Henniges Automotive is a world-class sealing system solutions provider to the global automotive market with a manufacturing facility in Reidsville. Headquartered in Michigan, Henniges’ Reidsville plant opened in 1994 as Metzeler Automotive.  The company currently employs about 300 people in Reidsville and produces rubber automotive door and window seals at the local plant for automobile brands such as Ford, Chrysler, and BMW.  The Reidsville plant is one of 11 Henniges plants throughout the world.  The company has a total of more than 4,500 associates located across three continents.

Unifi, a world leading producer and processor of multi-filament polyester and nylon textured yarns, remains one of Rockingham County’s largest employers.  In addition to its Nylon manufacturing plant in Madison, Unifi operates a package dye operation and plastic bottle processing center in Reidsville. The dye plant opened in Reidsville in 1970.   In 2016, Unifi expanded at the existing Reidsville facility and opened its REPREVE® Bottle Processing Center.  The more than $28 million investment helped Unifi achieve its goal of vertical integration for its REPREVE® recycled product line, adding flexibility, expanding production capabilities and supporting volume growth. REPREVE is Unifi’s flagship brand of recycled fibers, made from recycled materials such as plastic water bottles.

The REPREVE Bottle Processing Center created more than 80 new jobs in Rockingham County.  It includes more than 150,000 square-feet of space in the existing Reidsville facility for a state-of-the-art recycling center that is one of the most advanced in the United States, with the capacity to produce annually 75 million pounds of the highest quality, consistent, clean bottle flake.  The flake is made from PET plastic bottles that are chopped, washed, dried and bagged for use in the production of REPREVE, or sold to other companies for a variety of consumer packaging applications, such as thermoformed food-grade packaging like cups and takeout containers, as well as non-food applications such as strapping and film.  Earlier this year, the company announced an expansion of its Repreve line with the new Repreve Our Ocean product made from ocean-bound plastic bottles.  REPREVE can be found in products ranging from apparel and hosiery to automotive and industrial applications, and is used by some of the world’s leading brands, including Patagonia, Haggar, Quiksilver and Ford. 

Amcor, a worldwide leader in tobacco packaging, operates a tobacco packaging plant in Reidsville.  Amcor is a global company that is headquartered in Australia and operates over 300 facilities throughout the world.  Amcor’s Reidsville Plant is one of 20 tobacco packaging plants in the world and is located in the Reidsville Industrial Park.   The Reidsville facility opened in 2006, bringing another international company to Rockingham County, and it currently has more than 100 full-time employees. 

Isometrics, Inc. is a manufacturer of aircraft refueling trucks, fuel handling products, and other tank trucks in Reidsville.  It has been manufacturing tanker trucks and fuel hauling equipment in Rockingham County since 1973.   Isometrics is a major contractor for the U.S. government, suppling trucks and equipment to the Department of Defense.  The company has about 100 employees in Rockingham County.

Reidsville is home to two significant plastic recyclers.  Plastic Revolutions has about 75 employees and recycles all form and grades of plastic scrap, specializing in high molecular weight plastics.  It also processes post-consumer plastic bottles from used detergent, milk jugs and other consumer products.  Plastic Revolutions produces around five million pounds of recycled plastic pellets per month.

Envision Plastics also has about 75 employees in Reidsville.  The company is a leading recycler of HDPE plastics and supplier of innovative Post Consumer Resin (PCR) solutions for corporate partners.  It provides resin for plastic electronics packaging, sunglasses, and other non-food items. 

In the last year, Reidsville has been fortunate to attract two new, industrial companies.  Sanritsu Logistics is an international logistics company that is headquartered in Japan.  The company is constructing a new warehouse and logistics operation in the Reidsville Industrial Park.  It will operate a kitting service for manufacturers from the Reidsville location, a service that streamlines the combination of items into packages of finished goods that are then delivered to customers.  Sanritsu plans to open soon and will create more than 20 jobs.

Pella Corporation, a leading manufacturer of window and door products for residential and commercial use, is opening a new manufacturing facility in Reidsville.  The company plans to be operational by the end of year and is creating 125 new jobs.  Pella purchased a former spec building and will manufacture patio doors and vinyl windows in Reidsville.  Founded in Des Moines, Iowa in 1925, Pella is family-owned company currently operating 11 facilities nationwide.

These are snapshots of just a few of Reidsville’s manufacturers and industries.  Other smaller industries and businesses have found Reidsville to be an ideal location for making their products.

Manufacturing Week: Spotlight on Mayodan, NC’s Industries

The Town of Mayodan was built around industry having developed due to the railroad and textile industry.  Mayodan’s manufacturing and industrial base is diverse today but textiles still account for the highest number of jobs.

One of the world’s largest yarn spinners, Frontier Spinning Mills, operates two manufacturing plants in Mayodan and is the town’s largest employer.  The company produces 100% cotton and cotton blend spun yarns for the knitting and weaving industries.  Frontier began operating in Rockingham County in 1992 and continues to flourish here, employing more than 500 people total between its two local plants.

Sturm, Ruger & Company, Inc.’s firearms manufacturing plant opened in Mayodan in 2013 and it was one of this area’s largest economic projects in decades.  Ruger is one of the nation’s leading manufacturers of high-quality firearms for the commercial sporting market, and a major producer of precision steel investment castings.  The company produces hundreds of thousands of firearms each year for hunting, target shooting, collecting, self-defense, law enforcement, and government agencies.  

Ruger’s Mayodan plant is its third manufacturing plant in the United States and is also home to Ruger Sportswear & Accessories.  The company refurbished a former textile manufacturing facility and currently has over 370 employees.  Ruger selected Mayodan and Rockingham County following a competitive site selection process between North Carolina, South Carolina, Texas and Florida.  It ultimately chose Rockingham County because of the available workforce here.

McMichael Mills is another textile company that has been successful in Rockingham County for nearly three decades.  The company was established in 1993 and it has manufacturing, distribution and headquarters operations in Mayodan.  McMichael Mills, which employs nearly 200 people, produces high-quality covered elastic yarns for uses in a variety of products such as the hosiery, narrow fabrics and medical markets.  The company’s innovative solutions, commitment to quality and competitive prices helped McMichael Mills endure through the years.  It is now an international leader in spun-stretch yarns and is the most sought after yarn converter in the business.  McMichael Mills’ two yarn plants produce over 500 different stretch yarns each year, which amounts to more than 20 million pounds of yarn.  The company serves customers worldwide and its yarn is used in more than 50 prominent brands in products such as socks, orthopedic and compression stockings, airline tags, and athletic shoes. 

Bridgestone Aircraft Tire USA moved its retreading operations to Mayodan in 2007 from Miami, Florida.  The company was attracted to the area because of the advantages in having a readily available workforce, proximity to major customers and transportation corridors, and an available manufacturing building.  The Mayodan facility is Bridgestone Aircraft Tire’s headquarters for its North America division, which is part of the global Bridgestone Corporation based in Japan.  With a team of about 100 full-time employees, the company retreads tires for commercial aircraft in its 160,000 square foot facility in Mayodan. 

Mayodan is also home to a plastics company, Blow-Molded Solutions.  The homegrown company, which opened in 2010, has approximately 80 employees.  By 2016, Blow Molded announced a $2.4 million expansion that included a 20,000 square-foot-addition to double its manufacturing facility.  Blow Molded provides large blow molded plastic parts for the recreation, consumer, industrial, and large truck markets. 

Sutherland Products a homegrown, family company based in Mayodan that manufactures the Charlie’s Soap brand of cleaning productsFounded by Charlie Sutherland, Jr., the company has been in business for over 40 years and its original Charlie’s Soap industrial cleaner was developed to clean machines in the local textile mills.

When the textile mills moved overseas, the second generation of Sutherlands—Charlie’s sons Taylor, James and Morgan—restructured and grew the business beyond industrial cleaning.  In 2002, Charlie’s sons took over, launched the Laundry Powder, rebranded the company and its products, and modernized operations.  Using the same basic formula, which is all natural, environmentally safe and hypoallergenic, Charlie’s Soap now includes a full line of cleaning products from laundry detergent, all-purpose cleaners, indoor/outdoor cleaner, and more.  Since then, Sutherland Products has enjoyed an average 25% growth year over year and its laundry powder has been a top seller on Amazon.  The company sells products online as well as through thousands of brick and mortar locations in all 50 states and 50 countries. 

In 2016, Sutherland Products completed a major expansion with the purchase of second, 120,000 square-foot facility in Stoneville.  The company invested over one million dollars in the Stoneville location, which houses the corporate offices and distribution center.  The manufacturing remains in Mayodan. It’s still a family-run business with about 20 employees.

Manufacturing Week: Meet Madison, NC’s Top Manufacturers/Industries

Just like most rural, southern towns, Madison, NC’s manufacturing heritage is rooted in tobacco and textiles.  In fact, Madison was home to upwards of 40 tobacco plants in the late 1800s making it the largest tobacco manufacturing center in the world at that time.  Today, the quaint town of about 2,100 residents boasts a diverse mix of large industries, small businesses, and homegrown retail shops and eateries.

Madison’s largest manufacturer and Rockingham County’s largest manufacturing employer is Unifi.  The company’s Madison plant was established in 1970 by two local businessmen as Macfield Texturing Company.   Unifi purchased that company in 1991 and currently has about 500 employees in Madison and 225 at a second plant in Reidsville.  A world leading producer and processor of multi-filament polyester and nylon textured yarns, Unifi’s facility in Madison produces textured and covered yarn used in premier product lines for customers like Ford, The North Face and more.  Totaling 946,586 square-feet, the Madison plant houses Nylon Drawn Textured Yarn, Single, Double and Air Covered product lines. This plant also features an innovative Sock and Hosiery Lab. 

The nation’s largest supplier of brick pavers, Pine Hall Brick, operates two manufacturing facilities in Madison.  The company has been a leading manufacturer of face-brick, pavers and specially shaped brick since 1922.  Headquartered in Winston-Salem, NC, Pine Hall Brick maintains about 160 employees in Madison.  It opened the brick plant in Madison in 1970.  The company expanded in Madison in 1996 when it opened the paver plant.  At that time, the fully-automated, state-of-the-art paver plant was the only plant in the country dedicated entirely to the production of clay pavers.  Pine Hall Brick has since opened a second paver plant in Georgia to meet consumer demand.  Consider using Pine Hall Brick pavers in your next backyard project.

Remington Arms Company, LLC moved its corporate headquarters to the Madison area in 1996.  America’s oldest gun maker, Remington designs, produces and sells sporting goods products for the hunting and shooting sports markets, as well as military, government and law enforcement markets. While Remington does not manufacture any products in Madison, its corporate office provides about 150 jobs in the community making it a major employer.   

Synergy Electronics Recycling is a cutting-edge electronics recycling firm located in Madison.   With approximately 80 employees, the company provides shredding and mechanical separating of used electronic equipment into commodity grade components. Synergy opened in Madison in 2000 and also provides other services such as demanufacturingasset recoverycertified data destruction of sensitive media, and transportation services for the materials it handles.   The company works with various industries such as healthcare, finance, education and manufacturing as well as county and municipal collection programs.

Located in downtown Madison, Gem-Dandy is a wholesale distributor of belts and accessories servicing retailers across the globe.  The Penn Family started Gem-Dandy in 1921 as a successor to the Penn Suspender Company. Green Penn, the first company president, invented and patented the GEMCO Adjustable Garter – the world’s first fully adjustable garter for men, women and children.

Gem-Dandy entered the belt business during World War II. The Danbury name was registered as a brand name in the 1970’s and sales expanded across the country into thousands of men’s specialty shops. Today, Gem-Dandy employs more than 40 people in Madison and distributes a wide variety of belts, wallets, suspenders and other accessories in dress, casual, work wear and western styles. The company is the licensor of several popular brands such as PGA Tour®, John Deere®, Roper®, Officially Licensed Collegiate Products®, Mossy Oak®, REALTREE® and Colours by Alexander Julian®. Gem Dandy also has its proprietary brands including Danbury Golf, Danbury Workwear, Lady Danbury, G-Bar-D Western Outfitters and Cowgirls Rock. The company’s products can be found in major department stores as well as smaller venues.  Look for these licensed products in retail stores to support Gem Dandy.

It’s no secret that bootleggers once ran the backroads of this area, but today, two legal distilleries have found a home for manufacturing their spirits in Madison.  When it opened in Madison in 2005, Piedmont Distillers Inc.became NC’s first legal distillery since prohibition.  It has spent the last decade innovating a family of spirits that includes Catdaddy Spiced Moonshine, Junior Johnson’s Midnight Moonshine and Method and Standard vodka. The company currently has about 20 employees in Madison.

Catdaddy Spiced Moonshine is a spicy yet sweet old-fashioned spirit blended in a small batch process.  Piedmont’s line of NASCAR legend Junior Johnson’s (a.k.a. “the midnight runner”) brand of ‘shine is available in original recipe, 100 proof and in seven, handcrafted, real fruit infusions.  The Midnight Moon brand also includes an American whiskey.  Method + Standard is an NC distilled vodka that is available in original, strawberry, apple spice and raspberry flavors.   The company’s spirits can be found in ABC stores throughout the United States and is sold worldwide.

Midnight Moon Family

Also in Madison, Italian-themed GIA Distillery produces its handcrafted solera style American whiskey and grappa in the old train depot (circa 1895) that houses its distillery and tasting room.  GIA is a small boutique distillery and one of the owners grew up in Sicily while the other hails from Asheville, NC.  Both have been making wine and beer for at least 40 years and have parlayed that experience now into distilling where they’re able to add that hand-crafted touch.  GIA currently makes FJW Solera Style American Whiskey crafted using a technique that originates in Spain, consisting of stacking barrels and only drawing a portion from the bottom barrels for bottling.  This is a fairly new technique for aging in the U.S. and because of the labor involved, is not seen by the larger producers.

GIA also makes a grappa (an Italian style brandy) called Francesca, named after the wife of one of the owners.  The grappa is made the old fashioned Italian way that utilizes the entire grape for production.  The grappa is then rested in French Oak, which combined with the juice of the grape, provides a smoothness not found in most Italian grappas.  Visit their website for information about tastings and tours: