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Local dog Frankie poses for photos outside the New York Stock Exchange, decorated for the Chewy intial public offering of the company's stock in 2019. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

Note: This story was updated at 11 p.m. on July 21, 2021, to correct the spelling of "Chewey" in the headline and text.

The online pet food retailer Chewy Inc. announced Tuesday it will establish a new regional e-commerce fulfillment center in Tennessee, creating 1,200 new jobs.

Chewy Inc., which was started a decade ago and became a publicly-traded company in 2019, is adding its newest distribution facility in the Nashville suburb of Mt. Juliet, where the company expects to build and open a fulfillment center by the fall of 2022. The company, which is dually headquartered in Dania Beach, Florida, and Boston, also announced plans this week to build an 800,000-square-foot e-commerce fulfillment center in Belton, Missouri, also with 1,200 employees.

Chewy is an online retailer offering pet food and pet-related products from more than 2,000 brands. Last year, the company generated more than $7.1 billion in online sales.

Pete Krillies, vice president of real estate, facilities and procurement for Chewy Inc., said Mt. Juliet was selected for the new distribution facility due to its centralized location within 650 miles of half the U.S. population and a one-day trucking distance to 75% of U.S. markets.

"We're thrilled to open our newest fulfillment center here in Wilson County, Chewy's first in the state and 14th in the country," Krillies said."This new location will extend our fulfillment network in the Southeast region, allowing us to provide even faster delivery to more than 19 million active customers around the country."

Bob Rolfe, the commissioner of Tennessee's Department of Economic and Community Development, said Chewy will be one of the largest employers in Wilson County.

"Tennessee is primed for Chewy's newest e-fulfillment center thanks to the combination of our ideal geographic location and strong transportation infrastructure," he said.

Since 2020, more than 80% of new jobs committed in Wilson County have come from projects in the logistics and transportation industry.

Across Tennessee, distribution, warehousing and trucking has been a growing industry sector.

Since 2010, Amazon has invested more than $6.5 billion into its local fulfillment center infrastructure across Tennessee, including its $139 million of warehouse facilities in Chattanooga and Charleston that employ several thousand workers, depending on the season. Amazon currently employs more than 6,500 workers in Tennessee and is planning on adding 5,000 more employees at a new $230 million Operations Center of Excellence being built in downtown Nashville.

— Compiled by Dave Flessner

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