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Posted on: February 18, 2022

Gov. Youngkin Announces AutoZone to Establish Distribution Center & Direct Import Facility in NKC

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RICHMOND, VA - Governor Glenn Youngkin today announced that AutoZone, Inc. (NYSE: AZO), the nation’s leading auto parts retailer and distributor of automotive replacement parts and accessories, will invest $185.2 million to establish a new warehouse and distribution center in New Kent County. The company will construct an 800,000-square-foot distribution center and direct import facility in the New Kent City Center to serve as its East Coast distribution operation, creating 352 new jobs. 

“AutoZone’s new distribution and direct import facility in New Kent County will be a historic economic boost for the region and demonstrates the advantages of Virginia’s strategic location and world-class infrastructure,” said Governor Youngkin. “The supply chain sector continues to gain momentum and this major investment is a powerful testament to the Commonwealth’s assets and competitiveness. We thank AutoZone for creating over 350 new jobs for hardworking Virginians and look forward to its future success.”

“AutoZone’s newest distribution operation in New Kent County will enable the company to easily access 47 percent of U.S. consumers within a one-day drive and global markets through The Port of Virginia,” said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Caren Merrick. “With more than 4,600 supply chain operations located throughout the Commonwealth, Virginia has emerged as a premier logistics destination serving as a single gateway into critical customer markets. We look forward to a continued partnership with AutoZone.” 

“AutoZone’s decision to establish such a large footprint in the Commonwealth is a testament to the infrastructure assets we have in place to ensure their products get to more store shelves predictably,” said Secretary of Transportation Shep Miller. “The Youngkin administration will actively seek ways to ensure The Port of Virginia and the road and rail freight corridors are positioned to handle increased capacity for years to come.”

“With over 145 stores in the Commonwealth of Virginia and more than 735 stores in neighboring states along the East Coast, we are very excited to be a part of the New Kent community and Greater Richmond region,” said Bill Rhodes, AutoZone Chairman, President, and CEO. “During our rigorous and competitive search process to identify our next distribution center location, Virginia and New Kent County leadership were tremendous and instrumental in us deciding to join this wonderful community. Our large-scale investment in New Kent County is an important part of our strategy for accelerated growth and represents our commitment to always put customers first.”

Founded in 1979 and headquartered in Memphis, Tennessee, AutoZone is the leading retailer and distributor of automotive replacement parts and accessories in the Americas. Each AutoZone store carries an extensive product line for cars, sport utility vehicles, vans, and light trucks, including new and remanufactured automotive hard parts, maintenance items, accessories, and non-automotive products. Many stores have a commercial sales program that provides commercial credit and prompt delivery of parts and other products to local, regional, and national repair garages, dealers, service stations, and public sector accounts. The company also has commercial programs in all stores in Mexico and Brazil. AutoZone sells the ALLDATA brand diagnostic and repair software in addition to selling automotive hard parts, maintenance items, accessories, and non-automotive products online.

The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with New Kent County and The Port of Virginia to secure the project for Virginia. Former Governor Northam approved a $2,512,000 grant from the Commonwealth’s Opportunity Fund to assist New Kent County with the project. The company is eligible to receive benefits from the Port of Virginia Economic and Infrastructure Development Zone Grant Program, and funding and services to support AutoZone’s employee training activities will be provided through the Virginia Jobs Investment Program. Dominion Energy Virginia will also assist with the project. 

“As the Chairman for the New Kent County Board of Supervisors and on behalf of the entire board and our citizens, we are elated to welcome AutoZone into our community and look forward to strengthening our business and personal relationships with the company and its employees,” said Thomas Evelyn. “AutoZone and its representatives have proven to be premier business partners to the New Kent County team, and we are especially thankful for the 352 full-time employment positions that will be created within the County. The addition of a Fortune 500 company to our community is a game changer and we look forward to a robust future as New Kent County continues to grow.”

“We applaud AutoZone’s decision to build its East Coast distribution center in Virginia and capitalize on the access to global markets offered by The Port of Virginia,” said Stephen A. Edwards, CEO and executive director of the Virginia Port Authority. “This company is going to be a significant importer, so consistency in its logistics supply chain is critical to a successful operation. The investments we’re making in our terminals will help to ensure that AutoZone can grow its volumes without concern. We welcome AutoZone and are looking forward to a long, collaborative relationship.”

“We are excited that AutoZone has chosen New Kent County, Virginia for its next logistics facility,” said Felicia Howard, Vice President of Economic Development Strategy, Dominion Energy Virginia. “Dominion Energy looks forward to not only powering AutoZone’s ability to distribute to new markets, but also partnering for its long-term success in this region.” 

“By locating its new distribution center in New Kent, AutoZone has made a supremely sensible selection,” said Senator Thomas K. Norment, Jr. “This infusion of $185.2 million will generate 352 local jobs right in our backyard. AutoZone’s commitment to Virginia confirms the Commonwealth as the best place to locate, build, and grow a business.”

“Congratulations to New Kent County on Governor Youngkin’s announcement that AutoZone, Inc. will be investing $185.2 million to establish a new warehouse and distribution center and create 352 new jobs in New Kent County,” said Delegate Scott A. Wyatt. “I am excited that AutoZone chose Virginia for its East Coast distribution center, utilizing a $2.5 million grant from the Commonwealth’s Opportunity Fund to assist New Kent County with the project. This is great news for New Kent County and the Commonwealth. I look forward to seeing continued economic growth and job creation throughout Virginia.”

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