Former Cigarette Facility to Host Medical Device Manufacturing

Cook Medical announced a letter of intent was signed with the Whitaker Park Development Authority Inc. to acquire a long-standing facility at Winston-Salem’s Whitaker Park. A portion of the R.J. Reynolds building will transform into a modern, world-class medical device manufacturing facility.

“To turn part of the R.J. Reynolds building into a life-saving and life-changing medical device manufacturing facility is an exciting transformation,” said Barry Slowey, president of Cook Medical’s Winston-Salem facility. “We’re proud to reinvest in the community, the history and the local economy.”

Built in 1961, the 850,000-square-foot facility will be home to Cook Medical’s current workforce of more than 650 employees in Winston-Salem. Production at the facility ended in 2012. With a history of revitalizing once-vacant buildings, Cook plans to invest in the property so it will once again be an economic driver for the community.

“We need the new space to modernize and transform our operations and manufacturing that will continue providing innovative technologies to help treat patients around the world,” Slowey continued. “The flexibility that the R.J. Reynolds space provides will allow us to purpose build for efficiency in our production lines.”

The completion of the acquisition is subject to certain conditions, including inspections of the property and finalization of agreements with the City of Winston-Salem, Forsyth County and the state of North Carolina and is expected to occur in the third quarter of this calendar year.