TMI AutoTech, Inc. announced today that it would locate its operations in the Raceplex development at VIRginia International Raceway (VIR) in Halifax County, Virginia. TMI AutoTech, a US subsidiary of Trak Motorsports, Inc. of King City Ontario, has recently received an exclusive North American license from Ariel Motor Company, UK to establish a facility in the US to conduct manufacturing, final assembly, testing, sales, service, parts and customer service for the latest generation of the Ariel Atom motorcar, to be called the Ariel Atom 3. Ariel Atoms are ultra high performance, open-wheel, 2-seater supercars which have achieved remarkable global recognition and sales performance (www.arielatom.com). The Halifax County site was chosen among competing locations in the north central and northwestern sectors of the US and in Canada.
TMI AutoTech President and Chief Executive Officer David Goadby stated that the company found everything it was looking for in Virginia and in Halifax County. “The people from the Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP) (www.yesvirginia.org), VIR and the Industrial Development Authority of Halifax County were magnificent to work with”, Goadby said. “They teamed up to make by far the most professional and thorough proposal we received from the other locations we were considering”, he added. Goadby stated that the presence of the VIPER research facility and the new chassis dynamometer at VIR were also key factors. “Not only do we gain access to state-of-the-art motorsports testing facilities but we will also benefit tremendously by the presence of faculty and staff from the Institute for Advanced Learning and Research (IALR), Virginia Tech and Old Dominion University at the site”, Goadby said.
TMI AutoTech, Inc. will occupy an existing 10,000 square feet building in the Raceplex development at VIR (www.virclub.com). The firm plans to invest $1.5 million in machinery, equipment and building up-fits and employ approximately 16 people. The company expects to hire 75% of their employees from the local labor market. An additional substantial impact will be realized in local tourism and hospitality venues as potential buyers and existing owners of Ariel Atom vehicles visit the area. “In addition to the manufacturing, sales and service end of our business, we also hope to be hosting periodic gatherings of Ariel Atom owners and aficionados from across the continent”, explained Goadby. “And, we will continue to market an ongoing program called the Ariel Atom Experience, which provides single and multi-day hands-on driving sessions for individuals, corporate and group outings (www.arielatomexperience.com). The facilities at VIR are ideal for our needs—a magnificent track, superior hospitality and food, nearly year-round track availability and many other amenities”, Goadby added. TMI AutoTech will also be doing business with various support businesses in the region. “Our needs will include various light metal stampings, bending, forming and fabrication services along with sub-assembly and other services to support our business”, Goadby explained.
William Fitzgerald, Chairman of the Halifax County Board of Supervisors, gave TMI AutoTech an official welcome to the area. “This is great news for Halifax County and the Southern Virginia Region”, Fitzgerald said. “We are looking forward to a long term relationship with the company, its employees and customers”, he added. Fitzgerald thanked the Virginia Tobacco Indemnification and Community Revitalization Commission for its commitment of $50,000 from the Tobacco Region Opportunity Fund, which will be utilized for permanent improvements to the site to accommodate the company’s needs.
Mike Eades, Executive Director of the Industrial Development Authority of Halifax County (www.halifaxvirginia.com) lauded the project as the latest addition to Virginia’s Motorsports Alley business cluster. Virginia’s Motorsports Alley is a marketing partnership between the Counties of Halifax, Henry and Pittsylvania, the Cities of Danville and Martinsville, the Martinsville and South Boston Speedways, IALR, VIR and VEDP (www.motorsportsalley.com). “TMI AutoTech’s announcement at VIR is the second major motorsports announcement in Virginia’s Motorsports Alley in as many months”, Eades said. “Southern Virginia and Halifax County are becoming widely recognized as a serious contender for new and expanding motorsports related enterprises”, he added. Eades thanked the staff of VEDP, VIR, the Tobacco Commission and the Virginia Department of Business Assistance’s Jobs Investment Program for their help in bringing TMI AutoTech to Halifax County.
TMI AutoTech, Inc. to Locate at VIR