RINGGOLD — Axxor, a manufacturer and designer of paper honeycomb, will expand its Ringgold East Industrial Park facility.
The company is investing $3.5 million and adding 21 jobs, Gov. Glenn Youngkin announced during an event at the company’s location Wednesday morning.
During his speech to company representatives, employees and local officials, Youngkin pointed out the company had sold out of its product last year and couldn’t take any more orders due to high demand.
“That is such an exciting moment to now take a step and invest $3.5 million and expanding this facility, doubling capacity, adding 21 new, great teammates to the team,” Youngkin told the crowd gathered under a tent on a sweltering day.
Axxor, which began operations in the county in 2012, makes paper honeycomb, a core material used in a variety of products, including furniture, packaging and major automotive components.
“It gets us all excited when we get to look right over there and see a Bronco and know that the product that is made right here in this facility makes up the roof of that Bronco,” said Youngkin, who later raised the roof of the vehicle to highlight the product’s use.
A new Ford Bronco was displayed at Axxor during the announcement to provide an example of the paper honeycomb’s use.
The product is used to reduce weight and improve fuel efficiency.
Axxor’s expansion is a result of a partnership with a supplier to Ford Motor Co. for the new Bronco platform and demand in the packaging industry for materials to support e-commerce growth, according to a news release from the governor’s office.
Axxor, founded in 1993 in Zwolle, the Netherlands, selected the Dan River Region for its production facility in 2011 because the support offered by the state and local leadership was the strongest in the region, Axxor president and co-founder Robert Boerrigter said in a prepared statement.
“Since beginning production in 2012, the state and local communities have delivered on those promises made in 2011 and now again supported our next phase with a competitive package,” he said. “For this reason, continuing its expansion in Ringgold was a logical choice.”
Virginia competed with Michigan for the project. The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with Pittsylvania County and the Southern Virginia Regional Alliance to secure the project for Virginia.
“It’s always exciting when an existing, well-respected company like Axxor decides to continue to invest and expand in our region,” said Pittsylvania County Board of Supervisors Chair Vic Ingram.
When a local company expands, it’s a testament to the business friendly environment of the region and the state, Ingram said.
“It’s also a testament of our skilled and dedicated workforce and of our local and regional commitment to support companies for the long term,” he added.
Axxor operations manager Steven Boerrigter pointed out that material from the facility is used in nearly 3.5 million passenger vehicles in North America every year.
“The odds are, the next time that you’re at a stoplight, if you look around, one of the vehicles around you has our product inside it that came from this facility right behind you here,” he said.