Governor Northam Announces Joint Venture to Invest $267 Million in Paperboard Recycling and Production in Chesapeake, Creating 210 New Jobs

New operation will advance U.S. recycling technology, become one of Virginia’s largest exporters

(Chesapeake, VA, January 11, 2022)

Governor Ralph Northam today announced that Kamine Development Corporation and Nicollet Industries, LLC, green infrastructure and sustainable development leaders, will invest $267 million to establish a joint venture paperboard recycling and production facility, Celadon Development Corporation,  at the Chesapeake Deepwater Terminal site in the City of Chesapeake. Virginia successfully competed with South Carolina for the project, which will create 210 new jobs.

“Celadon Development Corporation’s state-of-the-art operation will produce in-demand fibers from recycled paper products, benefitting the environment and positioning Chesapeake and the Commonwealth as pioneers of this exciting recycling technology in the U.S.,” said Governor Northam. “The capital investment, new jobs, and environmental stewardship opportunities provided by this project will pay dividends for years to come, especially as we build out our clean economy. We look forward to a long and productive partnership with the company.”

Celadon will convert recycled mixed paper and old corrugated cardboard into a reusable and exportable fiber sheet to supply middle-market paper manufacturers in China. The company’s paper products will be produced using a paper mill dryer system from waste cardboard at a more efficient cost than bleached paper, utilizing a technology that has been widely used around the world but will be the first of its kind in the United States.

Celadon’s 335,000-square-foot facility will utilize the most efficient processes, creating a closed loop, waste-free industry. At its peak, this operation may use up to 300 rail cars per month and export 80,000 TEUs, or twenty-foot equivalent units, per year, equivalent to 10 cargo ships, through The Port of Virginia. At full capacity, Celadon would represent one of the largest exporters in Virginia, with approximately $200 million in export value annually.

“It is exciting to partner with Celadon Development Corporation on this joint venture,” said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Brian Ball. “The revenue from Celadon’s exports and the creation of 210 new jobs, will strengthen the economy of the City of Chesapeake and the region, and we welcome this innovative company to Virginia.”

“Virginia has one of the largest and most automated container terminals in the country, and the Port has been extremely supportive of our project,” said Tim Zosel, Chief Executive Officer of Celadon Development Corporation. “We worked closely with the City of Chesapeake to find a great piece of property that could be developed into a first-class location for our project. Celadon looks forward to a long and productive relationship with the many Virginians that made this possible.”

The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with the City of Chesapeake, the Hampton Roads Alliance, The Port of Virginia, and the General Assembly’s Major Employment and Investment Project Approval Commission to secure the project for the Commonwealth. Governor Northam approved a $2 million grant from the Commonwealth’s Opportunity Fund to assist the City of Chesapeake with the project. The company is eligible to receive benefits from the Port of Virginia Economic and Infrastructure Development Zone Grant Program. Funding and services to support the company’s employee training activities will be provided through the Virginia Jobs Investment Program.

“This major investment and Celadon Development Corporation’s groundbreaking new recycling and production facility is a win for the Hampton Roads region and the Commonwealth,” said Major Employment and Investment Project Approval Commission Chair Senator Janet Howell. “I am proud the MEI Commission could play a role in securing this important project, and look forward to the company’s future impact.”

“We thank Celadon for its $267 million investment and creating 210 new jobs in the City of Chesapeake,” said Major Employment and Investment Project Approval Commission Vice Chair Delegate Luke Torian. “The company’s new operation will advance U.S. recycling technology, and I am pleased the MEI Commission could collaborate with our state, regional, and local partners to help secure this project.”

“We are excited to see this type of recycling business choose the City of Chesapeake as its new location,” said Rick West, Mayor of the City of Chesapeake. “This investment into green technologies underscores our city’s commitment to sustainable development and further shows that Chesapeake is a great location for all types of businesses.”

“Having this state-of-the-art facility locate in the City of Chesapeake highlights not only a large capital investment, but also the commitment to bringing good-paying jobs to the citizens of the city,” said Steven Wright, Director of Economic Development for the City of Chesapeake. “These new jobs in green technologies will further show that Chesapeake and the Hampton Roads Region have one of the most skilled and diverse workforces in the country.”

 “The Hampton Roads Alliance is thrilled to welcome Celadon to Chesapeake,” said Douglas L. Smith, President & Chief Executive Officer of the Hampton Roads Alliance. “We enjoyed working with VEDP, Chesapeake Economic Development, The Port of Virginia, and leaders from Kamine Development Corporation and Nicollett Industries, LLC as they searched for the right location for this joint venture; we are particularly appreciative of their commitment to this project in spite of the challenges we have all collectively faced due to COVID these past few years. Celadon’s plan to create jobs, invest in a state-of-the-art facility, and utilize the Port of Virginia is further proof that Hampton Roads is an ideal location for manufacturing, distribution, and the emerging green economy.”

 “The importance of Celadon investing nearly $270 million to develop its operation in Chesapeake cannot be overstated–this is very clearly a win for Virginia and for The Port of Virginia,” said Stephen A. Edwards, Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director of the Virginia Port Authority. “At full capacity, Celadon will produce a significant amount of material for export that will move over our port. This is an international company that has made a strategic decision to build here and access world markets via The Port of Virginia. Presently the port is investing to ensure it is ready for the future and we look forward to growing in tandem with Celadon and serving as its global gateway for decades to come.”

“The $267 million that Celadon will invest in the City of Chesapeake will create 210 new jobs and bring lasting positive economic impact to the region,” said Senator L. Louise Lucas. “Furthermore, the company’s commitment to the environment and advanced technology while also utilizing The Port of Virginia makes this a great project not only for the 18th Senatorial District, but the Commonwealth as a whole.”