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Renfro Supply Expands Whitley County, Kentucky, Operations

Renfro Supply Co., one of the region’s largest wholesalers, will expand its operations in Whitley County, Kentucky. The roughly $8.5 million project is expected to create 25 jobs.

The new 51,000-square-foot facility on six acres will more than double the space of its current footprint. The investment will allow Renfro Supply to provide the full product offering of a convenience store, along with additional opportunities to serve other businesses. Construction is anticipated to begin this month and be completed by June 2023.

“The new facility is a long overdue expansion of our capacity as a distributor,” said Renfro Supply President and CEO Burley McFarland. “The new space allows for growth and the ability to diversify within our industry, allowing access to many new job opportunities. We look forward to being able to offer new products and services the former facility would not afford.”

To encourage investment and job growth in the community, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) in August preliminarily approved a 15-year incentive agreement with the company under the Kentucky Business Investment program. The performance-based agreement can provide up to $500,000 in tax incentives based on the company’s investment of nearly $8.5 million and annual targets of creation and maintenance of 25 Kentucky-resident, full-time jobs across 15 years and paying an average hourly wage of $20 including benefits across those jobs.

“Investments from companies like Renfro Supply, which has been serving the commonwealth for 100 years, is helping us achieve that goal. This is a great day for Southeast Kentucky and the residents of Whitley County,” added Governor Andy Beshear.

Additionally, KEDFA approved Renfro Supply Co. for up to $100,000 in tax incentives through the Kentucky Enterprise Initiative Act (KEIA). KEIA allows approved companies to recoup Kentucky sales and use tax on construction costs, building fixtures, equipment used in research and development and electronic processing. By meeting its annual targets over the agreement term, the company can be eligible to keep a portion of the new tax revenue it generates. The company may claim eligible incentives against its income tax liability and/or wage assessments.

Renfro can also receive resources from Kentucky’s workforce service providers. Those include no-cost recruitment and job placement services, reduced-cost customized training and job-training incentives.

“It has been a pleasure working with the owners of Renfro Supply on their expansion, and I am very pleased that we were able to retain their business operations and existing employees, as well as adding an additional 25 new jobs, in Williamsburg/Whitley County,” said Bruce Carpenter, executive director of the Southern Kentucky Economic Development Agency. “Congratulations on their 100-year anniversary and expansion. I look forward to a mutually beneficial partnership with Renfro Supply for many years to come.”

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