Manufacturing jobs coming to Archdale

ARCHDALE — Archdale should receive a boost on the jobs front, with Sumitomo Forestry America establishing a manufacturing facility in the city and other businesses also potentially adding to their workforces.

The investment of $19.5 million should result in the creation of 129 jobs with Sumitomo Forestry based on an announcement from Gov. Roy Cooper’s office last week.

That’s not the only potential boost that could impact the Archdale area.

Officials at Thomas Built Buses in Archdale announced earlier this month that 150 new workers might be needed for the company.

The uptick at Thomas Built Buses comes as the company is reacting to a demand for electrical bus orders from around the country.

With layoffs at United Furniture Industries announced last month, this is an opportunity for many of those displaced workers, according to Thomas Built Buses. There’s a third-shift pay rate of $18.47 per hour for the bus company.

Also, Furnitureland South in Jamestown reportedly has had up to 25 openings in a variety of areas.

Sumitomo Forestry America is a wholly owned subsidiary of Sumitomo Forestry Co., Ltd., a Nikkei-listed forestry company founded in 1691 and headquartered in Tokyo. Based on information from the governor’s office, the company’s project in North Carolina will establish a component manufacturing and distribution facility to produce building materials, such as roof trusses, floor trusses, and wall panels used in residential housing and wooden commercial and multi-family buildings.

“Manufacturing companies find North Carolina’s rural communities offer them an ideal place to grow their businesses,” Cooper said in a statement. “From our superior transportation networks to our skilled workforce, Sumitomo Forestry will find Randolph County will deliver the right ingredients for success.”

Another wholly owned subsidiary of Sumitomo Forestry America, Charlotte-based Crescent Communities, will help develop and build the new production facility.

Although wages for the new jobs will vary depending on position, the average salary will be $45,782, which is above the current average wage in Randolph County of $40,552. 

Sumitomo Forestry’s project in North Carolina will be facilitated, in part, by a Job Development Investment Grant approved by the state’s Economic Investment Committee. In the course of 12 years, the project is estimated to grow the state’s economy by $308.3 million. 

Because Sumitomo Forestry chose a site in Randolph County, classified by the state’s economic tier system as Tier 2, the company’s JDIG agreement also calls for moving $77,300 into the state’s Industrial Development Fund – Utility Account. The Utility Account helps rural communities across the state finance necessary infrastructure upgrades to attract future business.

By Bob Sutton