PITTSYLVANIA COUNTY, Va.—  Ison Furniture Manufacturing Inc. will invest $3.5 million to acquire and renovate the former A.C. Furniture Co. facility in Pittsylvania County, Virginia. The North Carolina-based Ison will also use the money to purchase new equipment for the assembly and full production of its upholstered furniture products, according to a statement from Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam.

Gov. Northam said the state successfully competed with North Carolina for the project, which will create 150 new jobs. Ison Furniture’s supplier, Dogwood Global LLC, will also locate to a vacant 30,000-square-foot building on site, and invest $500,000 in new equipment, adding 45 jobs to manufacture high-end wood tables and custom furniture frames that will be upholstered by Ison Furniture.

Ison produces contemporary furniture for the residential and hospitality markets; the company. The company has two facilities in North Carolina in addition to the new operation in Virginia. Ison will also utilize excess upholstery and sewing capacity at the facility to manufacture personal protective equipment products to support the local COVID-19 response.

“Ison Furniture Manufacturing Inc. is excited to become part of the historic Virginia furniture industry,” said Akira Ison, president. “Southern Virginia is known for having some of the finest furniture craftsmen in the country, and Virginia has led the way in providing a foundation for businesses and employees to grow and prosper together. Local and state government embraced our concept of designing a COVID-conscious facility, and our family-owned business looks forward to helping over 150 employees prosper and take care of their families.”

“Our initial plan was to open the factory in North Carolina, but Virginia was far and away a better option,” said Rodney Terry, vice president of Business Development for Dogwood Global LLC. “The economic environment Virginia has built over the years gave us the confidence that our financial investment would be secure. We told the economic development group that we had contracts we had to fill, and the speed moved on this project blew us away. Virginia is ready for business.”

The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with Pittsylvania County, the Southern Virginia Regional Alliance, and the Virginia Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission to secure the project for Virginia. Gov. Northam approved a $186,500 grant from the Commonwealth’s Opportunity Fund to assist Pittsylvania County with the project. The Virginia Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission also approved $86,500 from the Tobacco Region Opportunity Fund (TROF). Funding and services to support Ison Furniture’s employee training activities will be provided through the Virginia Jobs Investment Program. The Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission also approved $23,500 from TROF for Dogwood Global, LLC.

“We are pleased to welcome Ison Furniture Manufacturing and Dogwood Global to Southern Virginia,” said Gov. Northam. “Manufacturing is an important pillar of many communities across our Commonwealth and is key to rebuilding our economy in the wake of the ongoing global pandemic. The region’s strong history with textiles and furniture combined with the caliber of the existing upholstery and furniture-building workforce makes this project a natural fit for Pittsylvania County, and we look forward to the future success of this new operation.”

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