October 22, 2014

Manufacturing

West Point Home Staying Put in Chipley

| 1/1/2011
Chipley factory
Enterprise Florida helped keep Terry Ellis and his employees in Chipley.

In April 2009, WestPoint Home general manager Terry Ellis told his workers that the Chipley factory, which makes comforters, pillows and other bedding items, was moving to Mexico. Nineteen months later, he was able to announce the plant would stay. In the intervening months, new products were added, and both productivity and orders increased, says Ellis. Enterprise Florida assisted with Quick Response worker training and a tax refund. Employment, once 900 but falling to 250 after the closure announcement, recently increased to 415 as a third shift was reinstated.

Ellis also became convinced that logistics favored a U.S. plant. "It's difficult to compete with foreign labor costs, but we make a big bulky product and when you ship a big comforter from offshore, that's a lot of cost," says Ellis.

Tags: Housing/Construction, Northwest

Digital Access

DIRECT DIGITAL ACCESS
Add digital to your current subscription, purchase a single ditgital issue, or start a new subscription to Florida Trend.

TABLE OF CONTENTS
An overview of the features and articles in this month's issue of Florida Trend.

ACCESS THIS ISSUE »

Florida Business News

Florida Trend Video Pick

Gasoline Prices: Why Are They Going Down Now?
Gasoline Prices: Why Are They Going Down Now?

Gasoline prices in the U.S. are the lowest they've been in four years. Why?

Earlier Videos | Viewpoints@FloridaTrend

Ballot Box

Jeb Bush has said he'd accept tax increases as long as they are paired with federal spending cuts. This stance runs counter to conservatives who oppose tax hikes. Is Bush right?

  • Yes - raising taxes should be considered
  • No - there's enough money, need to manage it better

See Results

Ballot Box
Subscribe