Thomas Industrial Fabrication of Woolwine is bringing 28 full-time jobs to Floyd County by relocating to Floyd County, moving into the abandoned Dreaming Creek Timber Frame building at the Economic Commerce Center on Christiansburg Pike just outside the town limits.

The company’s sole owners and current Floyd County residents John Paul and Kelly Thomas closed the deal with EDA authorities late Wednesday morning at the office of attorney James Shortt. The family-owned business operates as Turbo Sales & Fabrication, Inc. and purchased the Dreaming Creek Tiber Frame site building and 11-acre site in the industrial park.

“My father started the company in 1997, and I stepped into leadership about a decade ago, during the recession,” Thomas said in a prepared statement Wednesday. “Our motivation in purchasing this building is to give us the possibility for expansion, as well as to provide stability and create a more organized workspace by having all production under one roof. Floyd is a great fit for us in part because of the strong welding program at Floyd County High School, and the better transportation access.”

The company’s 28 full time jobs pay an average of $50,000 a year, which is double the current average annual wages of workers in Floyd County. The company plans to expand its operations in the new location.

“This is a great fit for Floyd County,” said Jon Beegle, chairman of the Economic Development Authority of Floyd County. “One of our goals is to increase the number of good-paying jobs here, and this is another step in that direction.”

Beegle praised the welding program at Floyd County High School.

“We are very grateful and excited that they are investing in Floyd,” he added.

“We are excited to welcome Thomas Industrial Fabrication and those good-paying jobs with strong benefits to Floyd County,” said Board of Supervisors Chairman Lauren Yoder. “And the company will add significantly to the county tax base.”

Yoder also praised the expanding career and technical education programs at the high school.

Thomas Industrial Fabrication manufactures custom-made machinery and build-to-print products. The company’s web site says it provides “material handling systems that vary from vacuum and pressure systems to belt and drag conveyor systems.”

The company’s jobs include welders, machinists, millwrights, fabricators, mechanics, buyers and office support. Economic Development Director Lydeana Martin says six of the company’s current employees and the owners are county residents.

Martin notes that the deal with Thomas Industrial Fabrication, along with recent leases that fill the last available space at the county’s Innovation Center, leaves the EDA with “no more business facilities available for lease or sell” in the Commerce Park. The county is planning a new 20,000 square foot “shell building” for the commerce center and the commerce park has one pre-graded site available to join current operations that include the Innovation Center, and expansion by Hollingsworth & Vose, which took over the site of a commercial truck recycling, operation owned by Volvo, that moved to North Carolina as the first tenant of the site’s first “shell” building.

EDA purchased the 27,000 square Dreaming Creek building and 11 acres for $825,000 in in December of last year. Thomas agreed to buy the property for $735,000. As part of the deal, the EDA has the right to repurchase the property if it is put up for sale in the next five years and has easements as part of the sale conditions.

Martin said the sale price provided incentives for Thomas to relocate to Floyd and helped provide the buyback clause and easements.

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