Local contractor claims company that shuttered 3 Richmond area warehouses owes him nearly $100K

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HENRICO COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — Hundreds of employees were suddenly let go from their jobs Wednesday in Henrico. One former business partner told 8News that all three Premier XD metro-Richmond locations have closed their doors and that the company owes him almost $100,000.

Steve Abernethy said he has been sending invoices to Premier XD for payments since July. He explained that on top of not getting paid, the sudden closure of the warehouses have also put his employees out of work for at least a few weeks.

Abernethy’s small business, ABCO Industrial Solutions, has been contracted by Premier XD for different jobs since 2015. Now, Abernethy says he hopes the company does the right thing.

“This is affecting us tremendously,” he told 8News. “They’ve always been good for it. They’ve had our back, we’ve had theirs.”

RELATED: Hundreds lose jobs as company shuts Richmond area warehouses

Abernethy explained that his employees were in the middle of a job when Premier shut everyone out Wednesday morning.

“First things first was getting all of our tools and equipment out,” Abernethy said. He told 8News the doors were locked before he was paid the more than $98,000 he’s owed.

“If we do not get paid, we’re gonna be feeling the effects of this for a very long time,” Abernethy admitted. “Frankly, I just didn’t see this coming.”

An email thread from Thursday shows management within Premier XD advocating for Abernethy’s situation. The messages, which Abernethy shared with 8News, comes from two directors from the company.

“Can we pay these invoices? ABCO has done a spectacular job for Premier and I’m concerned that this small business may not be able to stay solvent without payment,” one director said in an email.

Another director with Premier XD acknowledged Abernethy’s company completed all the work.

“Those two guys are probably the biggest reason they’ve been such a good partner to us,” Abernethy said. 

Abernethy said that if his business gets paid, he wants to donate half of the money to start a fund for the people suddenly without a job now.

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