Winston-Salem is Proud to Host the RiverRun International Film Festival

Winston-Salem is Proud to Host the RiverRun International Film Festival

The RiverRun International Film Festival is a regional event based in Winston-Salem, NC and is one of the premier film festivals in the southeastern United States. The 14th annual RiverRun will be held April 13–22, 2012.  This video provides a wonderful overview of the event:



RiverRun – Sponsorship from RiverRun International Film Fest on Vimeo.


Industries that Love Winston-Salem, and Why: Part 2

Industries that Love Winston-Salem, and Why: Part 2

Advanced Manufacturing is building in Winston-Salem.

In economic development, individual regions tend to focus their efforts on specific industries. In this series of posts, we’ll examine why several individual industries have focused their expansion efforts, ultimately, in Winston-Salem, Forsyth County.

Advanced Manufacturing

Is it fair to say that manufacturing in the U.S. is making a huge comeback? Perhaps, especially when you look at the kinds of manufacturing facilities that are developing. The key word in all of this is “advanced.” And Winston-Salem, Forsyth County is drawing more attention lately from companies in this sector. What makes this area appealing to the Caterpillar’s of the world? Here are three ideas.

Access to Markets

Location almost always comes first. In advanced manufacturing, this is particularly important. The Southeast U.S. is experiencing a bit of a manufacturing Renaissance as companies realize the value of expanding in this region. Standing out within the Southeast can present a bit of a challenge. But here’s where Winston-Salem, Forsyth County scores high marks. It’s more than location. It’s the relatively easy access to other markets that puts the city on so many short lists. With excellent options for transportation and shipping, including a FedEx hub close by, much of the world’s markets are within reach. In fact, more than half the U.S. population lives within 600 miles of Winston-Salem.

Workforce Quality

Like much of the South, manufacturing runs deep in the area. The difference for many is the level of quality associated with our manufacturing tradition. Textiles and furniture industries may not be the staples they once were, but the skilled workforce that characterized those industries remains. Companies that choose Winston-Salem develop a quick appreciation for the dedication to craftsmanship that permeates the workforce.

Less Haste. More Speed.

Frenetic could never describe life in Winston-Salem. The easy-going nature of people here is disarming, to be sure, but make no mistake: business here moves with purpose and pace. As manufacturing processes continue to become more innovative and technical, company leaders continue to marvel at how quickly their operations can get up to speed in Winston-Salem. One executive visiting Forsyth Technical Community College (FTCC) was shocked (and delighted) to find that the framework for training their workers was mapped out before he had finished his campus tour.

Other qualities come into play, of course, for individual companies. But when you combine workforce quality with easy access to major markets, then get operations up and running to a high standard on time or ahead of schedule — you end up with a formula for attracting the attention of advanced manufacturing companies around the world.

What other industries are looking our way? We’ll continue in Part 3.

Caterpillar Opens In Forsyth County

Caterpillar Opens In Forsyth County

On November 16, the new $426 million Caterpillar advanced manufacturing facility opened in Forsyth County, North Carolina.

From WFMY2 Winston-Salem

WFMY News2

We’ve collected some of the news stories of the grand opening event in the links below:


WSBI introduces free WS Business mobile app

Winston-Salem Business Inc. is pleased to announce the introduction of our new WS Business mobile app.

Developed specifically for WSBI, the WS Business mobile app serves as your gateway to important economic development news and events in Winston-Salem and Forsyth County, NC.  The WSBI mobile App allows users to:

  • Get updates on economic development news and events in Winston-Salem and Forsyth County
  • View available buildings and sites for your business along with maps and an overview of each site
  • Get an inside look at Life in Winston-Salem and Forsyth County
  • Stay connected with WSBI via Twitter and other social media platforms

Developed by Winston-Salem technology firm MobileClik, the WS Business App is available for download at the Apple AppStore.

For more information, please click here.

Hanesbrands to reopen distribution center with 60 jobs

Published: March 08, 2011

Increasing consumer demand for Hanesbrands Inc.’s apparel has led the company to reopen a Winston-Salem distribution center for at least three years.

The distribution center is in West Point Business Park near Stratford Road. The center was closed last summer because of reduced product volume. About 240 employees were affected by the shutdown.

However, an 11 percent increase in sales in 2010 has led to a need for more inventory space, spokesman Matt Hall said Tuesday. The company also has a major distribution center at 521 Northridge Park Drive in Rural Hall.

"We will have approximately 60 total employees at the facility – half permanent employees who will move from the Almondridge center in Rural Hall and half temporary employees," Hall said.

The company expects to hire the temporary employees through employment agencies, Hall said. He did not say whether previous Hanesbrands employees at the center will receive consideration in the hiring process.

Hall said the company will begin shipping men’s underwear and fleece products out of the center in early May. It began moving inventory into the center last week.

Michael Lord, an associate professor of strategy and entrepreneurship at Wake Forest University, said it makes logistical sense to handle a temporary distribution expansion close to its headquarters.

"The closer distribution is to home, often the easier and more flexible it is to control," Lord said. "This is especially true for sudden or unexpected bumps in sales or other quick changes in operations.

"There are people with relevant experience nearby that may be interested and able to do the work, even if it might be only temporary."

The reopening of the center represents a rare local work-force and production expansion since Hanesbrands spun out of Sara Lee Corp. with great fanfare as the city’s third Fortune 500 company in September 2006.

At that time, Hanesbrands had 4,900 employees in Forsyth – nearly 10 percent of its overall work force – and 8,600 in the state.

It now has 2,515 employees in Forsyth County and 3,785 in North Carolina.

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