For the Record - Southwest Virginia, November 2013

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Polish candle maker Korona S.A. announced it will open a production facility in Pulaski County, creating 170 jobs. Korona, which is one of the largest candle producers in the world, will spend $18.3 million to open its first U.S. facility. Korona is a supplier of private label products for global companies and a major producer of scented candles in Europe. The company’s core business is the development, design, production and sale of candle products. (

Lee Regional Medical Center, a 70-bed hospital in Pennington Gap, closed Oct. 1. Wellmont Health System, which operates the hospital, announced the closing in September. Hospital officials listed three primary reasons that led to the decision: Medicare reimbursement cuts associated with the Affordable Care Act; low community use of the hospital; and a lack of consistent physician coverage. (Bristol Herald Courier)

The Roanoke Times announced the layoff of 31 employees in September, primarily in its digital, technology and production areas. The reduction in staff is designed to eliminate redundancies and make operations more efficient, the newspaper said. BH Media, a subsidiary of Omaha, Neb.,-based Berkshire Hathaway, recently bought the newspaper from Norfolk-based Landmark Media Enterprises. (

Smith/Packett, developers of South Peak, broke ground on a new 80,000-square-foot Hilton Garden Inn in Roanoke County. The $15 million hotel is part of a growing community that includes condominium residences, residential home sites and future retail and office space. Construction is expected to be completed by the summer of 2014. When fully operational, the hotel will employ 40 people and include 2,000 square feet of conference space, a restaurant and lounge. (News release)

Agricultural produce wholesaler Virginia Produce Co.  plans to expand its Hillsville operation facility and create 75 full-time-equivalent jobs. During the three-year expansion, Virginia Produce will spend more than $2.54 million in capital investment and purchase an additional $12 million of Virginia-grown produce. Virginia Produce sorts, processes, packages and distributes a variety of Virginia-grown produce such as tomatoes, pumpkins, sweet corn, squash and broccoli from a 30,000-square-foot facility in Carroll County. (

W&B Fabricators Inc., a West Virginia-based manufacturer of mining machinery and equipment will invest $3.1 million to establish its first Virginia operation in Bland County. The project will create 50 jobs. Gov. Bob McDonnell approved a $100,000 grant from the Governor’s Opportunity Fund for the project. The Virginia Tobacco Indemnification and Community Revitalization Commission also approved $100,000 in funds. (

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