WINSTON-SALEM, NC - United Furniture Industries plans to invest $5 million to convert a former Hanesbrands factory into an upholstered furniture plant and distribution center that will create 200 jobs.

United Furniture Preps Move into Former Hanes Textile FactoryUnited Furniture, manufacturer of Simmons, is expected to begin redeveloping the 850,000-square-foot historic Weeks plant as early as next month, the Triangle Business Journal reported.

Two weeks ago, United Furniture received $150,000 in performance-based incentives from the Forsyth County Board of Commissioners. This came on the heels of incentives approved by the Winston-Salem City Council, premised on United Furniture making a commitment to maintain the operation for at least 10 years.

United Furniture is still waiting approval of a state job training grant. The average salary of jobs at the facility will be $28,420, plus benefits, according to the TBJ report.

Hanes shut down textile production at the Weeks plant in 2010, while using about one-third of the building for research and development and quality control activities. The company sold the facility last March to a developer Michael Bay for $3.2 million. Bay who had planned to convert building into a retail home furnishings mall announced in November that he had decided to lease the facility instead after failing to drum up enough furniture tenants, according to Fox 8 News.

When Hanes opened the Weeks plant in 1960, it was the largest manufacturing plant in North Carolina.

United Furniture has been in an expansion mode. Last year the company expanded its upholstery plant in Nettleton, MS. United Furniture currently has approximately 3,000 employees with facilities in Mississippi, North Carolina and California. Production space totals more than 4 million square feet, according to its website.

The exclusive U.S. manufacturer of Simmons Upholstery since 2008, UFI also produces stationary sofas, Beautyrest upholstery, reclining sofas, recliners, sectionals and Hide-A-Bed sleepers. It was founded in 2000 through the merger and acquisitions of Comfort Furniture, Parkhill Furniture and United Chair.

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