Successful Businesses in Meridian, MS
Meridian, MS's central location, skilled workforce and excellent quality of life put local businesses on the fast track to success.
PHOTO CREDIT: Jeff Adkins
With proximity to most major Southern cities, an excellent skilled workforce, ease of transportation and a family-friendly atmosphere, business people agree Meridian is the total package for operating a successful business.
Van Zyverden Inc. is one Meridian business that is blooming, and in more ways than one. It began as a family flower bulb business in 1919 in the Netherlands, and the Van Zyverden family opened a U.S. warehouse in Meridian in 1961 after noticing a great demand for flower bulbs in the Southeastern U.S. Today, the company’s 475,000-square-foot headquarters are located here, and Van Zyverden ships more than 400 million bulbs annually to all 50 states and Canada.
Van Zyverden employs more than 480 people and has an economic impact on the East Mississippi region in the millions of dollars. Yet it remains a family business with strong values run by brother and sister Robert Van Zyverden and Jaqueline Van Zyverden Hogan, great-grandchildren of the company’s founder.
“Van Zyverden is known to be a great company to work for and one that has great benefits,” says Michael Knost, chief financial officer at Van Zyverden Inc. “It has a very family-friendly culture, and the owners are very supportive of local community projects, including the Riley Center, Art in the Park and Mississippi State.”
Knost says he enjoys living and working in Meridian for its “community atmosphere, great road system and no traffic.”
“In comparison to other large cities in the South, Meridian has a low crime rate,” he says. “The availability of family activities is also a plus.”
In addition to Van Zyverden's convenient location and quality workforce, Knost cites easy access to specialized equipment as one factor in Van Zyverden’s success.
“The nature of our product requires a lot of it to be shipped on refrigerated trucks,” he says. “Since we share the same type of trucking as the poultry industry in our area, we benefit from the easy availability of this specialized equipment.”
It all adds up to a great atmosphere for growth.
“In the last year alone, we have added additional office space and a 55,000-square-foot warehouse,” Knost says.
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