CAIRO -- Industrial development is on the rise in Grady County.

Cairo's yet-to-be named industrial park will be getting another occupant in the form of Higdon's Furniture Company.

"We're excited to be in Cairo and looking forward to being a positive part of the community," said Warren Higdon, president of the company.

Higdon's Furniture Company began on April 1, 1953 in Quincy, Fla. with Warren Higdon's grandfather. Warren Higdon's father joined the company in 1960 and he and his brother, Ralph, got aboard in the early 1980s.

The family-owned business specializes in promotional bedroom furniture, mainly made of wood. The company ran out of room at its current location and was offered a package by the Grady County Joint Development Authority. Higdon's felt it was in in its best interest and accepted the offer.

Rick McCaskill, executive director of Cairo-Grady County Chamber of Commerce and the Grady County Joint Development Authority, stressed that the company is not moving to Cairo, but is expanding from its original location. "We're excited to have them coming," he said.

Warren Higdon said the furniture business has been good to his family.

"We're going to try to maintain and continue our growth pattern," he said.

Groundbreaking for the new location took place in March 2004. The company plans to open the facility in October.

Phase one will include 112,000 square feet. Higdon's plans to have more 750,000 square feet within five years.

The company is planning to hire 200 employees. It will start taking applications soon at the Department of Labor in Cairo or Thomasville.

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