The NC Department of Commerce has approved a $175,000 grant to support the reuse of a vacant building on South Brightleaf Boulevard (US301 South) that will facilitate 35 new jobs by Atlantic Resources Inc.
Atlantic Resource Inc. (ARI) is a locally owned specialty contractor that plans to merge three locations into their new Smithfield headquarters in 2016.
ARI was started in 2010 by Brian and Tonya Barefoot of Benson. The company currently employs 25 workers at locations in Florence, SC, Statesville, NC and Raleigh, NC. The company recently purchased the former Jerold manufacturing building on South Brightleaf Boulevard. The 85,000 square foot building, built in 1960, has been vacant for more than 20 years.
Brian Barefoot said he plans to add 35 new jobs, with a total staff of 60 employees, by the end of 2016. The total investment in the Smithfield-Johnston County area by Atlantic Resources is $1.1 million.
“We are from Johnston County and it is a good location,” Barefoot told WTSB News. “Aside from the building needing to be renovated, it’s a prime spot for industry in the town and county. We appreciate the assistance from the Town of Smithfield. Smithfield officials have made the process go smoothly. Atlantic Resources looks forward to being a part of the community.”
Barefoot said hiring would begin in the Spring of 2016 and work will begin at the new Smithfield site once building renovations are completed in the Summer of 2016.
The company provides industrial and agriculture fabrication maintenance support to companies including Caterpillar, Volvo and Honda, and various other manufacturing facilities. ARI will build control cabinets, packaging racking, machine prototypes, and custom material handling products at the Smithfield location.
The average salary of the 35 new workers will be $42,000 annually. The Town of Smithfield will administer the grant at no cost to local taxpayers.
In an unrelated grant, Sampson County was awarded $110,000 to support the renovation of two existing buildings in Clinton that will created 11 more jobs for Brooks Brothers. The company is a designer, manufacturer and distributor of apparel. The project will include roofing work, HVAC and electrical systems and paint the structures, which were constructed in 1958. The grant is part of a total capital investment of $3.5 million.