Ashley Furniture Re-Opening, Hiring

After sitting vacant for a number of months, the Ashley Furniture Homestore in Wichita Falls is about to spring to life, once again. The store has been taken-over by a new owner and the new management is looking to bring the business back.

The building is undergoing a transformation. "We've been here for a couple of weeks now getting this up and going," said Rick Martinez, Executive Vice President for Retail Operations. Contractors were busy painting and remodeling the expansive space along Kell West.

More than the fresh coat of paint, the business needs workers. The General Manager has been brought in, but all other positions will be hired locally. "We really want local people to serve the local community. We are a very community-oriented company," said Martinez.

The company is holding a job fair. All sorts of positions are open. "We're looking for people who are motivated, were looking for people who are positive minded, we are looking for people who really want to succeed in life," Martinez explained.

The company has not set a date to reopen, but an announcement could come soon. Company executives have been meeting with other members of the Texoma business community to help get things started back up.

While the new horizon is just around the corner, the brand's troubled past still lingers. A corporate executive in charge of fulfilling all orders placed with the previous owner says some people still haven't picked up their furniture. "We're at about 90%... We just can't get a hold of some people," he said.

If you are still waiting on an order, Ashley wants you to call them. The merchandise is in Wichita Falls, ready to be picked up or delivered. Call the corporate offices at (608) 323-3377 to arrange the details.

As the new owners work to move away from the past, they look ahead to the future in Wichita Falls. "Its been such a good experience for all of us and we are really excited to come back home… We're really looking forward to finding some quality people to work for us," said Martinez.

If you would like to apply for one of the dozens of open positions, stop by the job fair. It runs Wednesday from 3:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the Wellington Conference Center, 5200 Kell. It continues Thursday from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Paul Harrop, Newschannel 6