Pepsi explanding in St. Pauls

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RALEIGH — Governor Pat McCrory, North Carolina Commerce Secretary John E. Skvarla, III, and the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina (EDPNC) today announced that Pepsi Bottling Ventures LLC will create 50 jobs over the next five years at a new $16.5 million distribution center in Robeson County. Additionally, another 250 jobs will remain in the area.

“This expansion will continue to strengthen North Carolina’s position as one of the fastest growing economies in the nation,” said Governor McCrory. “The company’s choice of Robeson County for this state-of-the-art distribution center continues the strong momentum for the consumer foods and beverage industry in our state.”

Pepsi Bottling Ventures is the nation’s largest privately-held manufacturer, seller and distributor of Pepsi-Cola and other beverages. Headquartered in Raleigh, the company serves more than 8 million consumers in North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Maryland and Delaware. The roots of its Pepsi brand can be traced to the 1898 invention of the popular carbonated drink at a New Bern pharmacy. Pepsi Bottling Ventures also distributes Aquafina, Lipton, Gatorade and Starbucks products. The company employs more than 2,000 people across its various North Carolina locations.

“North Carolina’s excellent transportation systems, unparalleled workforce and convenient access to large consumer markets make it a prime destination for distribution centers,” said Secretary Skvarla. “Pepsi Bottling Ventures joins other success-minded companies in taking advantage of the assets that make North Carolina’s economy one of the best-performing in the nation.”

Pepsi Bottling Ventures will hire warehouse, logistics, inventory management and other employees through this expansion. Compensation will vary by position, but annual salaries at the facility will average $39,500. Robeson County’s overall wages currently average $29,579 per year.

“St. Pauls is an ideal location for our new facility. The location is centralized for our current employees and allows for easy highway access to distribute our products,” said Claire Niver, SVP of Corporate Affairs. “We appreciate the support we have received from the Town of St. Pauls, Robeson County, and the State of North Carolina making it possible for us to expand here.”

The project was made possible in part by a performance-based grant of up to $150,000 from the One North Carolina Fund. The One NC Fund provides financial assistance, through local governments, to attract business that will stimulate economic activity and create new jobs in the state. Companies receive no money up front and must meet job creation and capital investment targets to qualify for grant funds. All One NC grants require a local government match.

Also supporting Pepsi Bottling’s expansion will be a $400,000 grant from the state’s Economic Infrastructure Program, which provides grants to local governments to assist with infrastructure projects that lead to job growth.

Since Governor McCrory entered office in January 2013, North Carolina’s economy has generated more than 300,000 jobs.

Numerous state, regional and local allies worked with EDPNC and N.C. Commerce in supporting Pepsi Bottling Ventures’ expansion plans. They include the North Carolina General Assembly, North Carolina Rural Infrastructure Authority, North Carolina Community College System, N.C. Department of Transportation, Robeson County, the Town of St. Pauls and North Carolina’s Southeast Regional Partnership.