In Virginia, Dollars Do Grow on Trees

Dollar Tree's headquarters in Chesapeake, VA. Dollar Tree's headquarters in Chesapeake, VA. Dollar Tree

In August, Governor Terry McAuliffe announced one of Virginia’s largest economic development projects of 2016. Dollar Tree Inc., a leading American discount variety retailer, will invest $110 million to expand and develop its corporate headquarters in Chesapeake. Virginia competed aggressively against Dollar Tree’s North Carolina operation for the win, retaining 825 jobs and securing 600 new positions.

Dollar Tree’s roots run deep in the Commonwealth, going back to 1953 when a small variety store, K&K 5&10, opened in Norfolk. The company grew steadily under several different names, laying the foundation for what would eventually become Dollar Tree. In 1997, while many of its rivals were in the process of shutting down, Dollar Tree remained competitive and established its corporate headquarters and a distribution center in Chesapeake. At the time, the company had nearly 900 locations around the U.S., and has continued to grow by leaps and bounds. In July 2015, Dollar Tree completed the acquisition of Family Dollar Stores Inc., which brought annual sales to $19 billion. Today, the retailer has more than 14,000 stores in 48 states, with plans to add 550 stores this year.

Dollar Tree’s expansion will undoubtedly have a significant impact on Chesapeake and the Hampton Roads region. In addition to the hundreds of jobs being added, the company will further develop their 70-acre campus to benefit both employees and the public. Renovations will maximize open space for greenery, plazas and spacious streetscapes, and include restaurants, child care, doctors’ offices, apartments and condominiums. “The long-term relationship we’ve built with Dollar Tree has turned a dream into a welcome reality,” said Chesapeake Mayor Alan Krasnoff, “and when Dollar Tree succeeds as a company, Chesapeake succeeds as a city.”

A Haven for Headquarters
Dollar Tree’s climb up the Fortune rankings has been swift and steady. Since 2009, the company has risen from 499 to 180 in 2016. As one of 35 Fortune 1000 headquarters in the Commonwealth, Dollar Tree is a prominent corporate pillar in Virginia. From Dollar Tree, Advance Auto Parts, and Capital One to Northrop Grumman, businesses across various industry sectors call Virginia home, due to the many advantages the Commonwealth offers. From our strategic location and durable infrastructure, to our educated workforce and proactive business climate, Virginia is an ideal state for corporate headquarters.

Thanks to the Commonwealth’s central East Coast location, more than 40 percent of the U.S.’s population is within a one-day drive. Companies benefit from close proximity to major business, financial and governmental hubs. And, with the third largest state-maintained transportation network and 14 commercial airports, Virginia provides easy access to the U.S. and global economy. The Port of Virginia also continues to set the Commonwealth apart from competing states. As one of the busiest East Coast container ports, the Port is a leading gateway to the entire world.

Virginia’s robust workforce remains key in attracting and retaining businesses. As a right-to-work state, employers consistently find a vibrant, tech-savvy and diverse talent pool growing faster than the national average. The Commonwealth’s workforce is heavily bolstered by the state’s nationally acclaimed education system, providing a critical pipeline of skilled workers. A third of Virginians hold a bachelor’s or advanced degree, with nearly 100,000 degrees awarded annually. With 23 community colleges throughout the state, the Virginia Community College System provides occupational and technical training programs designed to meet manufacturers’ needs. Virginia also boasts the second highest concentration of technology workers and has become a hub for many well-established tech firms.

When a company continually reinvests in Virginia—big or small—it is a testament to the Commonwealth. Businesses continue to choose to invest in Virginia because it provides a solid economic foundation for growth. The success and growth of corporations, like Dollar Tree, which call the Commonwealth home demonstrate that Virginia pioneers innovation, crafting contemporary programs and an infrastructure that bolsters economic development performance for the 21st century.