In the early 1980’s the steel and manufacturing industries collapsed in Huntington, WV, causing massive layoffs and closures of mills and plants. The economic downfall caused a recession for the town. In 1987, a business incubator, United Huntington Industries, was created to foster small business in Huntington. One of the first was National Wood Products, a cabinet company, from Michigan.
United Huntington Industries brought in Gary Adams, a corporate attorney turned businessman, to run the cabinet door company. Adams eventually purchased the business, but shortly after his best customer began making their own
product, and sales declined, Adams kept the company afloat through 2001 when he met up with a Virginia furniture
maker who saw an opportunity to use machinery owned by National Wood Product to make high-end unique furniture.
Adams worked with the furniture maker on samples and saw great success during their first trip to Highpoint, North Carolina. Adams decided the company would adapt their product offering and they entered into the world of furniture making operating by the name Mackenzie-Dow.
Through the transition, Adams turned to First State Bank to obtain additional financing to purchase equipment, consolidate debt, and secure working capital. The lender, unable to take on all the risk themselves, used SBA guaranteed loans to help the small business through the transition.
Mackenzie-Dow, operated by Gary Adams and his son Bonner, has 32 employees and occupies 23,000 square feet on Hal Greer Boulevard in Huntington. In 2010, Mackenzie-Dow entered an affiliation with the Greenbrier resort and sets up shop in a charming 1,000 square foot 1870’s cabin at the Art Colony on Alabama Row. Utilizing the financing secured through SBA, these fine furniture makers craft customized collections of residential furniture.
“The SBA helps little guys like us, who have big dreams, find the capital we need to persue our vision,” states Bonner Adams. “For that we are grateful and we are thankful to our local bank that had the foresight and knowledge to use the SBA loan guarantee.”
Visit www.sba.gov/wv or contact the West Virginia District Office at 304-623-5631 for a list of loan-guarantee programs and other assistance the SBA provides.