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Stanley Engineered Fastening changes course, will stay open

After initially planning to permanently close its Stanfield Engineered Fastening facility this year, Stanley Black & Decker reversed its decision, informing Mayor Kevin Barbee last week that the plant would remain open.

In a letter to Barbee, Director of Operations Kent Shane wrote that the decision “reflects a change and serves as a notice that Stanley Black & Decker has no plan to close the plant.”

The Stanly News & Press previously reported in October that the company was planning to close “in an attempt to strategically consolidate our worldwide operations into fewer facilities,” according to the state’s Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification report.

The closure would have taken place in several phases, with the company planning to lay off 81 employees.

“Due to increased customer demand and alignment of our supply network and operations, we have taken another look at our product portfolios and where we make them and made the decision to continue manufacturing operations in Stanfield,” said Debora Raymond, vice president, public relations with Stanley Black & Decker.

In a time when many businesses across the country have had to close due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the decision was a big victory for Stanfield, as Stanley Engineered Fastening is the largest business in the town limits with more than 90 employees, according to Town Administrator Bridgette Helms.

Calling the announcement a “pleasant surprise,” Barbee said “it’s great in a small community to be able to maintain jobs so people can work local.”

“We are so pleased that the decision makers with Stanley Engineered Fastening/Stanley Black and Decker in Stanfield have decided not to close the Stanfield facility,” said Stanly County Economic Development Commission Director Candice Lowder. “Our office worked with the local staff to help build a business case to keep the facility open and we appreciate our ongoing partnership with their leadership team.

“I believe Stanly County’s low cost of doing business, skilled and affordable workforce, and North Carolina’s ranking as one of the best states for doing business were factors in the positive outcome of this retention effort,” Lowder added. “We appreciate the jobs and investment this company has brought in the past, and look forward to supporting their growth in the future.”

Stanley Engineered Fastening is a global company with 37 plants around the world, including 15 in North America. The Stanfield location manufactures Avdel brand product, which makes an assortment of rivets, lock bolts and engineered fasteners.

Stanley Engineered Fastening is one of 20 brands that make up the parent company, Stanley Black & Decker, a Fortune 500 American manufacturer of industrial tools, household hardware and provider of security locks and products.

The facility, at 614 N.C. Highway 200 South, has produced blind fasteners since 1995, though under the ownership of many different companies. It was initially Avdel Cherry Textron, followed by Acument Global Technologies and Infastech before becoming Stanley Engineered in 2013.

About Chris Miller

Chris Miller has been with the SNAP since January 2019. He is a graduate of NC State and received his Master's in Journalism from the University of Maryland. He previously wrote for the Capital News Service in Annapolis, where many of his stories on immigration and culture were published in national papers via the AP wire.

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