Posts by: Economic Development HQ.com

Indiana Economic Development Tax Credits Help Grow Green BEAN Delivery HQ and Sustainable Agriculture

Green BEAN Delivery LLC, an online ordering service that provides home delivery of fresh organic and local produce and all-natural groceries, announced plans to expand its headquarters in Indianapolis.

Green BEAN Delivery

Green BEAN Delivery (photo – greenbeandelivery.com)

The company will invest $3.84 million for expanding its headquarters and warehouse operations, and expects to create 104 new jobs by 2024.

Green BEAN Delivery has a mission to make sustainably and locally grown foods affordable and conveniently accessible to communities throughout the Midwest.

The company currently operates in four states, including Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky and Missouri. Within Indiana, they have locations in Indianapolis, Anderson, Columbus, Fort Wayne and Muncie.

They have their own 60-acre organic farm, and support dozens of local food businesses.

BEAN LLC CEO and owner Matt Ewer said they chose Indianapolis and Indiana as their home after entertaining multiple proposals from different municipalities and states. Ewer cited support from the City and State, as well as the central location of Indianapolis to the markets they serve, as important factors in making the decision.

“Indiana offers the business climate necessary for good ideas to grow into business successes,” said Governor Mike Pence.

The Indiana Economic Development Corporation secured the project by offering BEAN LLC conditional tax credits of up to $700,000 that are tied to the company’s job creation plans.

Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard said that people now want to live in places where they have easy access to healthy and locally-sourced food. Mayor Ballard added that the expansion of Green BEAN Delivery’s headquarters will bring hundreds of new jobs to Indianapolis and make the city a healthier and more attractive place to live.

Green BEAN Delivery was founded in 2007. The “BEAN” in their name is an acronym for biodynamic, education, agriculture, and nutrition. They established the Feel Good Farm in 2009 on 60 acres of USDA certified organic farmland, with a goal of growing food for delivery to their members and for educating farmers.

In 2012, the company established the EcOhio Farm as a partnership with the Cincinnati Zoo. This project is located on 50 acres of farmland in Mason, OH leased from the zoo. The sustainable produce grown at the farm is sent not only to their members, but also goes to the zoo animals and is used by the café at the zoo.

Green BEAN Delivery also works with a network of local farmers with both urban and rural roots to build food systems and businesses to address food challenges in communities.

Wisconsin Economic Development Tax Credits Secure $18M Ball Corp Expansion

Ball Corporation (NYSE:BLL) is undertaking an $18 million expansion of their metal container facility in DeForest, WI.

Gov. Walker takes a tour of Ball Corp. operations in DeForest, WI

Gov. Walker takes a tour of Ball Corp. operations in DeForest, WI (photo – wi.gov)

Ball will be expanding their existing 400,000-square-foot facility in the Madison suburbs. Construction is already underway to enable the addition of a new product line for aluminum aerosol cans.

The project will create 40 new jobs for DeForest and Dane County, and helps retain another 106 existing positions at the facility.

Governor Scott Walker, who made the jobs announcement in DeForest and took a tour of the company’s operations, said this is great news for Dane County, the region and the state.

“I’m pleased that a multi-national company with a rich history has decided to expand its operations here after considering options in other states,” said Gov. Walker.

In order to secure the expansion, the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation approved tax credits of up to $400,000 for Ball Corp. The exact amount in tax credits the company will receive over the next three years will depend on the number of jobs created and retained, and on the capital investment made by the company through 2016.

Michael Feldser, chief operating officer, global metal food and household products packaging, Ball Corp, said the DeForest plant is ideally located for serving their customers throughout the Midwest, so Wisconsin was the perfect location for this expansion.

Paul Jadin, president of the Madison Region Economic Partnership, said that Dane County and the surrounding area boast a long legacy in manufacturing that makes it an ideal location for the Ball Corp expansion.

The Madison Region Economic Partnership is the lead regional economic development organization for the eight-county Madison region, and serves as a partner and collaborator with WEDC and other state agencies, as well as for economic development initiatives involving the region’s local governments, chambers and the private sector.

Jadin added that Ball has facilities located all across the nation and globe, and their decision to grow in Dane County illustrates the region’s capacity for high-end production and skilled labor.

Broomfield, CO-based Ball Corp supplies packaging for the food and beverage sector and for household products, and also has a large aerospace and technologies division that primarily serves the U.S. government. Ball Corp and its various subsidiaries around the world together employ 14,500 people and generated $8.5 billion in sales last year.

Sam’s Club Continues Walmart Boost for Springdale, Arkansas Economic Development

Sam’s Club, a division of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT), announced plans to open a new warehouse club in Springdale, Arkansas.

Sam's Club Springdale, AR announcement

Sam’s Club Springdale, AR announcement (photo – Duncan Baird)

The 136,000-square-foot club will feature a host of members-only amenities, including a café, bakery, fuel station and a tire and battery center. The Sam’s Club Pharmacy will be open to the public.

This Sam’s Club brings 175 new jobs to Springdale, and follows the announcement last month of a new Walmart Neighborhood Market in Springdale with 95 new jobs.

These two announcements add to the huge boost for Springdale economic development by the new Walmart supercenter project with 300 jobs that was announced in Dec 2012 and is about to open in Springdale shortly.

Springdale Mayor Doug Sprouse said they are excited Sam’s Club sees the value of doing business in the community.

Springdale was the only community in the region with a Sam’s Club, but they had to relocate in 2007 to Fayetteville because of the denial of a liquor permit at the Springdale location. At the same time, another Sam’s Club was opened about 20 miles away in Bentonville, which is also the company’s headquarters. Springdale lost about $1 million in annual sales tax revenue due to the Sam’s Club relocation.

Sam’s Club Market Manager Kurt Hess said they are thrilled to be coming to Springdale, and excited to be offering their members a more convenient location and meeting the needs of small business owners in a growing business community like Springdale.

Brian Hooper, Walmart Vice President of Real Estate, speaking about the neighborhood market announced last month, said that Walmart is excited to continue to grow with Springdale and continue providing access to affordable food and everyday low prices.

Mayor Sprouse likewise noted that they are excited to continue growing their partnership with Walmart.

“Walmart provides job opportunities for our community while helping our city to grow its tax base and provide for the needs of our citizens,” said Mayor Sprouse.

Sam Club’s and its parent Walmart are headquartered in Bentonville, AR and employ more than 49,000 people at 107 locations in Arkansas. Sam Club’s by itself has 110,000 employees across operations spanning the U.S., China and Brazil. Their 630 clubs serve 47 million members.

Tesla Breaks Ground in Reno, Nevada for Gigafactory – Site Selection in Progress

Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) released their second quarter financial results for the year, and also provided an update about their Gigafactory site selection process.

Tesla Gigafactory

Tesla Gigafactory (photo – teslamotors.com)

Tesla had previously disclosed that they will be breaking ground on multiple sites in different states for the Gigafactory battery project with an investment of $4-5 billion and the creation of 6,500 jobs by 2020.

The company initially shortlisted Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico and Texas as locations for the Gigafactory, and then added California to the list. They plan to break ground on multiple sites in two or more of these states to ensure that there will be no delays in their schedule.

Tesla has now announced that they already broke ground in June on a site outside Reno, Nevada for the Gigafactory.

In a letter to shareholders, the company mentioned that they “continue to evaluate other locations in Arizona, California, New Mexico and Texas. The final site for the first Gigafactory will be determined in the next few months…”

The decision will be based on agreements for relevant incentives and processes to enable the Gigafactory to be operational in time to meet the company’s timing for the Tesla Model 3.

They also note that they see these duplicative investments for breaking ground in multiple sites as prudent and minor compared to the potential loss in revenue if the launch of the Model 3 were to be affected due to delays at the primary Gigafactory site.

Tesla additionally announced that they have signed an agreement with Panasonic Corporation for cooperation in the construction of the Gigafactory.

As per the agreement, Tesla will be providing and managing the land, buildings and utilities, while Panasonic will manufacture and supply the cylindrical lithium-ion cells and invest to equip the plant and install all the associated machinery and tools required. Supply partners will provide the precursor materials.

Tesla will take the cells and other components to assemble battery modules and packs.

Once the Gigafactory site selection process is completed, Tesla hopes to complete construction at the chosen site by the end of next year, and get through the equipment installation in 2016, with production scheduled to commence in 2017.

By 2020, the Gigafactory will be able to match the annual needs of a projected 500,000 Tesla vehicles, in addition to serving the stationary storage market.

JB Straubel, chief technical officer and co-founder of Tesla Motors, said that the Gigafactory represents a fundamental change in the way large scale battery production can be realized.

Straubel noted that not only will the Gigafactory enable capacity needed for the Tesla Model 3, but also sets the path for a dramatic reduction in the cost of energy storage across a broad range of applications.

Minnesota Economic Development Incentives Assist PERBIX HQ Relocation and Job Creation

PERBIX, a provider of manufacturing and engineering services, announced plans to consolidate and expand their operations in Minnesota to a new headquarters in the North Cross Business Park in Brooklyn Park, MN.

PERBIX

PERBIX (photo – perbix.com)

The company will invest $1.1 million into the project, supported by $139,000 in Minnesota economic development incentives for creating jobs.

PERBIX will be relocating about 75 existing employees from their current location in Golden Valley to the new headquarters and general operations building in Brooklyn Park, and will also create 12 new jobs within the next three years.

The $139,000 in state funding will be provided from the Minnesota Job Creation Fund (JCF). The company will only receive the funds after they complete the expansion and create the new jobs.

Governor Mark Dayton congratulated PERBIX on their expansion and thanked the company for their commitment to Minnesota.

Businesses may seek up to $1 million in JCF incentives, as long as they meet the eligibility requirements for investment and job creation. The minimum threshold for eligibility is an investment of at least $500,000 and creation of at least 10 new full-time jobs.

Applicants have to work with their local government in order to apply to the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) for a designation as a JCF business.

“The Minnesota Job Creation Fund is adding fuel to the state’s growing economy and helping businesses like PERBIX grow,” said Gov. Dayton.

Since the fund was launched earlier this year in January, DEED has awarded $10.5 million under the program for 17 Minnesota companies that are creating a combined total of 1,200 new jobs and investing $195.3 million across the state. Minnesota is on track to award $24 million in economic development incentives from JCF funding approved in the 2013 legislative session.

DEED Commissioner Katie Clark Sieben noted that PERBIX has been successfully growing their business in Minnesota for nearly 40 years, and congratulated them on the new headquarters and their continued commitment to creating jobs in the state.

PERBIX was founded in 1976, and now provides manufacturing and engineering services for a variety of sectors including government, defense, aerospace, semiconductor, medical, and food and beverage. Apart from their operations in Minnesota, the company also has a support office in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

USDA Grants For California Economic Development Organizations Supporting Rural Microentrepeneurs

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has awarded grants totaling $300,000 for supporting business development and job growth in rural communities.

USDA microloans

USDA microloans (photo – usda.gov)

The USDA is awarding $30,000 each to ten Microenterprise Development Organizations (MDOs).

Two of these are California economic development entities – the Yuba-Sutter Economic Development Corporation and the Jefferson Economic Development Institute.

The grants, awarded under the USDA Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program (RMAP), will help the MDOs offer microloans, training and technical assistance to microentrepreneurs – very small businesses with ten or fewer employees.

MDOs are awarded this funding either to provide technical assistance or for establishing revolving loan funds that provide microloans ranging from $5,000 to $50,000 to support rural microentreprenuers.

Technical assistance grants provided to an MDO may be used for preparing rural microentreprenuers for self-employment, improve the state of their microenterprise and enhance capacity, and help them achieve the ability to obtain business loans independently.

Funding provided for making microloans may be provided to borrowers for working capital needs, and for purchase of equipment, furniture, inventory, etc. It may also be used for debt refinancing, business acquisitions and lease or purchase of property that does not require construction and is ready to be used for business operations.

Sec. Vilsack said that through RMAP, USDA partners with local organizations who in turn are able to invest in local small businesses that would otherwise be unable to obtain the credit they need to grow and thrive.

“Facilitating long-term economic development in this way empowers rural residents to invest locally, cultivating stronger communities,” said Sec. Vilsack.

In addition to the two California MDOs that were awarded $30,000 each, the USDA also awarded RMAP grants to the following organizations in Washington, D.C. and seven other states.

Washington, D.C. – Community Development Transportation Lending Service

Washington – GROW Washington

Pennsylvania – Bridgeway Capital, Inc.

Illinois – Two Rivers Resource Conservation and Development Area

Ohio – ACEnet

Kentucky – Northern Kentucky Community Action Commission, Inc.

Oregon – Our Native American Business and Entrepreneurial Network

Mississippi – Mississippi University for Women

The Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program was reauthorized through 2018 under the 2014 Farm Bill. The exact level of funding for each fiscal year is decided by Congress, as called for in the federal budget.

Contact your USDA Rural Development State Office to apply for RMAP funding.

Monticello, AR Economic Development Commission Lands $90M Biomass Wood Pellet Facility

Zilkha Biomass Energy announced plans to establish a new facility for manufacturing advanced wood pellets in Monticello, Arkansas.

Zilkha Biomass Energy

Zilkha Biomass Energy (photo – zilkha.com)

The company will invest $90 million into the project, and expects to create 52 new jobs in Monticello and Drew County.

Zilkha Black® Pellet is the first advanced pellet in the biomass industry. These Zilkha pellets are water-resistant and can easily be transported and stored outside like coal.

The pellets can be integrated into coal-fired plants that need to reduce emissions to comply with clean air regulations.

Biomass wood pellets are made from feedstock such as mill residuals and low-grade wood, and offer a cheap and readily available renewable source for energy producers.

Zilkha Biomass Energy CEO Jack Holmes said this plant in Monticello will be one of their largest plants and will help them capture more of the growing biomass energy market.

The wood pellet market has been picking up as a part of the forestry sector ever since energy producers across the Atlantic in Europe discovered it was feasible for them to import wood pellets from the U.S.

According to a study conducted by Puneet Dwivedi at the University of Georgia Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources, using imported wood pellets to produce electricity in the U.K. reduces greenhouse gas emissions by 50-68 percent as compared to electricity produced using fossil fuels.

Up to now, states like Mississippi and Louisiana have been attracting most of these facilities, but wooden pellet producing facilities are now popping up all over the map wherever the feedstock is readily available.

Arkansas, which has forests covering more than 18.8 million acres (more than half of the state), is especially ideal for a biomass production facility.

“We are excited that Zilkha has chosen Monticello for their innovative work in the energy sector,” said Governor Mike Beebe.

The Governor added that South Arkansas has the renewable forests that this kind of enterprise requires to succeed.

Nita McDaniel, executive director of the Monticello Economic Development Commission, said that the Zilkha Black Pellet manufacturing facility was a natural fit for the community alongside the School of Forest Resources at the University of Arkansas at Monticello.

Apart from producing Black Pellets, the Houston, TX-based Zilkha Biomass Energy LLC also provides other biomass solutions such as conversions of electric utility customers’ fossil fuel stations.

Organic Food Producer Sky Valley Foods Relocating to Danville, Virginia

Sky Valley Foods, which makes natural and organic sauces and salad dressings, announced plans to relocate and expand their operations to Danville, Virginia.

Sky Valley Foods CEO Dennis Daniels unveils Sky Valley Foods sign at launch event in Danville, VA

Sky Valley Foods CEO Dennis Daniels unveils Sky Valley Foods sign at launch event in Danville, VA (photo – danville-va.gov)

The company is moving into a 132,000 square-foot facility in the Airside Industrial Park in Danville.

This property was formerly occupied by Amcor Tobacco Packaging and Shorewood Packaging Corp., but has been vacant since Amcor closed in April 2013.

Sky Valley Foods will be creating 60 new jobs in Danville by the end of this year. The new facility in Danville, which will now also serve as their headquarters, is several times bigger than the company’s existing operations in Yanceyville, NC.

Sky Valley Foods is relocating 50 of their existing employees from Yanceyville, and will be hiring ten new employees. They plan to increase their workforce in Danville to 100 by the end of 2015.

It’s a neat reversal of fortunes from a year ago, when Amcor shut down their Danville operations, laid off 67 workers, and announced an expansion at their Reidsville, NC plant.

Sky Valley Foods did not receive any state economic development incentives to relocate to Virginia, but the City of Danville is providing $100,000 as local incentives to support the installation of floor drains throughout the building to maintain sanitary conditions required for food processing.

The Industrial Development Authority of Danville facilitated the relocation by purchasing the property and entering into a lease-purchase agreement with Sky Valley Foods.

Danville Mayor Sherman Saunders said this project brings a wonderful addition of new jobs to the region, adding that Sky Valley Foods will be the second food processing company in the Airside Industrial Park, joining Nestle USA’s Toll House cookie dough plant which is also located in the industrial park close to the new Sky Valley Foods facility.

“Sky Valley Foods will be a significant contributor to our local economy, and I welcome them with a hungry appetite,” said Mayor Saunders.

Sky Valley Foods, Inc. was created through the merger of Wizard’s Cauldron and Organicville Foods when Dennis Daniels, now the company’s CEO, acquired Wizard’s Cauldron. They produce salad dressings and specialty sauces including condiments, pasta sauce, marinades and salsa for consumers who prefer natural and organic foods.

Sky Valley Foods plans to add new product lines at the Danville facility, and they expect production to begin by late fall.

Silicon Valley Bank Expansion in Tempe to Aid Arizona Economic Development

Silicon Valley Bank announced plans for an expansion at their Tempe, AZ location to support global operations and assist more technology and life sciences companies in Arizona.

Silicon Valley Bank

Silicon Valley Bank (photo – svb.com)

SVB will create 250 new finance and IT jobs in Tempe, doubling the staff the company has hired or relocated to Tempe since opening the facility in 2012.

Apart from the job creation in Tempe, Silicon Valley Bank also provided a separate boost to Arizona economic development efforts with a commitment to lend or invest at least $100 million over the next five years to technology and life sciences companies in Arizona.

Sandra Watson, president and CEO, Arizona Commerce Authority, said that SVB’s commitment to lend $100 million provides needed access to capital, which will help spur continued growth for businesses in the state’s innovation ecosystem.

SVB offers a range of diversified and innovative financial services to companies in the innovation sector and to their investors. Their commercial clients range from startups to large multinational corporations.

Silicon Valley Bank’s mission is to “increase innovative companies’ probability of success worldwide.”

The way they have been going about it for the last 30 years by providing support and services to technology and life sciences companies to aid their rapid growth aligns closely with the high-growth innovation companies and entrepreneurs that Arizona economic development programs and initiatives target for creating jobs and strengthening the economy.

Dax Williamson, managing director for Silicon Valley Bank in Arizona, said he would use the word “momentum” to describe the local innovation economy, noting that they’re seeing a steady pace of new business formation locally and the mood is positive.

Williamson added that SVB’s own business is likewise expanding around the world, so they’re growing and expanding in Tempe, which he said was a great place for their employees.

Tempe Mayor Mark Mitchell congratulated and thanked SVB for their success and commitment to helping entrepreneurs realize their dreams. Mayor Mitchell added that Tempe offers an unmatched lifestyle and location, and they are delighted to have SVB as a part of the community.

The Santa Clara, CA-based Silicon Valley Bank operates as a subsidiary and commercial banking operation of SVB Financial Group (NASDAQ:SIVB). SVB has more than $29 billion in assets and 1,700 employees servicing clients through offices and branches all over the world.

 

Orange County, Florida Approves Economic Development Incentives for VOXX Expansion in Orlando

Consumer and automotive electronics manufacturer VOXX International Corp (NASDAQ:VOXX) is looking for a location for a manufacturing facility and offices where they will produce DVD headrest systems for automotive OEMs, and Orlando is a contender for the project.

VOXX International Corp

VOXX International Corp (photo – voxxintl.com)

The company will invest $17 million into the project, which is expected to create 134 new jobs with an average salary of at least $65,559. This amounts to more than 150 percent of the prevailing average salary in the county.

VOXX International is planning to build a 125,000-square-foot office and facility for manufacturing DVD headrest systems and GPS automotive antennas.

The company already has a product engineering facility in Orlando, so the new facility will technically be an expansion. However, they are also considering an alternative location outside Florida. VOXX has its headquarters in Hauppauge, NY, and has additional facilities in Carmel, IN and Detroit, MI.

In order to secure the project, the Orange County Board of County Commissioners has approved the local match required for the incentives which the company is seeking from the State of Florida.

VOXX International has applied to the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, asking for $536,000 under the Qualified Target Industry (QTI) Tax Refund program, which works out to $4,000 per job being created. The company is additionally seeking another $825,000 through the Quick Action Closing Fund (QACF).

As approved by the Board of County Commissioners, local Orange County economic development incentives will account for 20 percent of the QTI tax refund and 40 percent of the QACF award. This works out to total of $437,200 in local incentives for VOXX, including $107,200 as the county’s share of the QTI tax refunds and $330,000 as the local share of the QACF award.

The State of Florida will now consider approving the rest of the economic development incentives, and an announcement is expected very soon, assuming that VOXX International agrees to locate the project in Orlando.

Hauppauge, NY-based VOXX International (formerly Audiovox Corporation) has 2,033 employees and a portfolio of more than 30 brands. The company generated more than $835 million in revenue last year.

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