HOLDEN – Mohawk Industries announced a realignment of the company’s wood flooring operating that will consolidate solid wood manufacturing at the recently upgraded Melbourne, Ark. Facility and will result in the closure of the Holden, W.Va. plant as of May 7, 2017. The Holden facility currently employs 111 individuals, who were notified of the decision during plant meetings.
“Today, we are focused on the people at our Holden facility,” said Jerry Hendrix, Mohawk’s vice president of human resources. “Any time a business decision impacts our people, we take it very seriously. We will do whatever we can to make this transition easier for them.”
Mohawk acquired the Holden and Melbourne facilities from Columbia Wood Flooring in 2007 as part of the Fortune 500 company’s transition from a carpet manufacturer to a total flooring provider.
“Mohawk has a comprehensive product offering, and we align our operations with changing consumer preferences,” said Gary Lanser, president of Mohawk’s laminate and hardwood business. “As the style and performance of our engendered wood, laminate and luxury vinyl tile collections have improved, consumers are gravitating to those innovative products, which has reduced market share for solid wood flooring.”
Mohawk’s Melbourne facility was recently expanded to manufacture engineered wood flooring in addition to it’s legacy solid wood production. Lanswer indicated that the Melbourne production would satisfy Mohawk’s solid wood demand and anticipated no interruption of service to Mohawk’s customers.
“The men and women at the Holden plant have done consistently good work providing exceptional quality and value,” Lanser said. “The Holden plant is closing because the U.S. market for solid wood has changed. The decision has nothing to do with the plant’s performance.”
Hendrix said the company would partner with the West Virginia Department of Labor to assist employees with retraining opportunities, job fairs and unemployment benefits. The company has partnered with area community and technical colleges to expand employee skill sets, which Hendrix said would provide advantages in their job searches.
“For many years, the people at our Holden plant have contributed to the success of the business, and we will do whatever we can to help them transition into new career opportunities. Any company would be lucky to employ these outstanding individuals.”
Mingo County Delegate Justin Marcum issued the following statement regarding the plant closure, “This is truly terrible. First off, my heart and prayers go out to those who are affected by this. I am going to continue to fight for our area and do all I can to help those hurt by his closure. I am also appalled by the actions of the upper management at the factory who failed to ever give proper notice to people in the area about this sudden closure.”
U.S. Representative Evan Jenkins (R-W.Va.) issued the following statement today regarding the announcement that Mohawk Industries will be closing its factory in Holden, Logan County:
“I am deeply disappointed and saddened by this announcement, and my thoughts are with all of the workers affected. I have reached out to leaders at Mohawk Industries to ask them to reconsider their decision to close this factory – when I visited this location last year, I saw firsthand just how hardworking and loyal these employees are. I will continue to work with local officials to help these employees and to attract new employers to southern West Virginia.”