September 6, 2007
Fitzgerald -- The largest employer in Ben Hill County is closing, which means that 500 people will lose their jobs when Shaw Industries shuts down.
This makes the second major employer in the county to announce a closure. Delphi, a major component builder for General Motors, announced it was closing its Fitzgerald plant in May.
The plant announced Thursday that it will be closing one of the three plants in Fitzgerald in the next two months. This particular plant spins the nylon.
The Shaw plant opened in Fitzgerald in 1983, and is based in Dalton, GA.
Shaw Industries got it's start producing rugs in 1946, when Clarence Shaw started the Star Dye Company. In 1985, Shaw Industries made its first appearance on the Fortune 500 list, with more than $500 million in sales and nearly 5,000 employees, and regional distribution centers across the U.S.
In 2001, Shaw began a new chapter in its long and varied history with the completion of its sale to Berkshire Hathaway Inc., the holding company of renowned investor Warren E. Buffett.
The Shaw Industries Plant in Tifton, which closed its doors in August of 2006, Leaving 89 people without jobs.
Shaw is a full-service flooring company with more than $5 billion in annual sales and approximately 30,000 employees.
They say the reason for the plant closing is related to the current decline in the housing market, thus a decline in carpet sales.