U-Play Corporation, headquartered in China’s Anhui Province, will open its first North American manufacturing operation in Virginia Beach. The company manufactures disposable sanitary products such as adult incontinence products, wet wipes and puppy training pads. Founded in 2006, the publicly held company employs a workforce of 310, and its products are exported to 40 countries.
Initially, U-Play Corporation will lease 200,000 square feet of space at 1440 London Bridge Road. The manufacturing site has two buildings, one of which will be occupied by U-Play for the manufacturing operations.
“This company looked at several location opportunities in other states,” said Virginia Beach Economic Development Director Warren D. Harris. ““The U-Play management team made the strategic decision to locate in Virginia Beach due to our favorable business environment, no machinery and tools tax for manufacturers, a highly skilled workforce and proximity to the Port of Virginia. U-Play will join our robust international business community.”
During phase I, U-Play Corporation will make a capital investment of $4.9 million in real estate, business property and machinery and tools within the first three years of operation. Additionally, approximately 35 new jobs will be created with average annual salaries of $37,440 excluding benefits.
The Virginia Beach Development Authority has awarded an APZ-1 Economic Development Investment Program grant in the amount of $125,000 for phase I based on the company’s capital investment since the location is within the YesOceana footprint and conforms to compatible business usage.
“Virginia Beach is a fantastic place for our business because of its strategic location, well-trained workforce and business-friendly environment,” said Hancy Cheng, U-Play Corporation’s CEO. “We want to put together all these advantages to create a manufacturing hub for our company to better serve our customers in the U.S.”
“This deal wouldn’t have happened without the strategic partnership of the City of Virginia Beach and their aggressive approach to incentivize the APZ-1 area, said Lindsay W. Himelright, assistant vice president of Harvey Lindsay Commercial Real Estate. “Larger block industrial warehouse space is tightening in the Hampton Roads market, and this will further reflect a positive absorption in the Oceana/Lynnhaven submarket.”
The mission of the Virginia Beach Department of Economic Development is to attract and retain national and international businesses to stimulate capital investment and create jobs. Virginia Beach is the most populous city in Virginia with a population of 450,000, and it is the 37th largest in the United States. It is recognized as one of the Best Run Cities in America by 24/7 Wall St. The Department of Economic Development received re-accreditation through the International Economic Development Council in 2016 and is one of only 50 economic development organizations in the world to have this recognition. Virginia Beach is listed among the Top Five Overall Mid-sized American Cities of the Future, Top 10 for Economic Potential and Top Five for Infrastructure by fDi magazine. CNNMoney.com ranked Virginia Beach as the Easiest Place to Start a Business and the 2nd Most Business-Friendly City in the country. For more information, visit www.yesvirginiabeach.com.