Job Creation

Apex Technology Building New Corporate HQ in Jacksonville, Florida

Jax Apex Technology, Inc. is planning to build a new corporate headquarters in Jacksonville, Florida and expand its operations in the new location.

Apex Technology

Apex Technology (photo –

The company will be making a capital investment of $5.4 million to build and equip the new headquarters on a site in Jacksonville that has not yet been finalized.

Apex Technology already has 27 employees in Jacksonville, and plans to create another 60 new full-time jobs over the next five years with an average annual salary of $56,750.

Barry Dixon, vice president of Jax Apex Technology, Inc., thanked the Jacksonville Economic Development Office, JAXUSA Partnership and Enterprise Florida for their support in bringing the project to fruition.

Dixon said the incentives negotiated with the City and State were vital to their decision, and they are now looking forward to these incentives being approved so that the company can start bringing the new jobs to Jacksonville.

Apex Technology is being offered $180,000 in Qualified Target Industry (QTI) tax refunds, with the City paying $36,000 as a local match for the $144,000 in state incentives.

The JAXUSA Partnership is the JAX Chamber’s economic development arm. JAXUSA President Jerry Mallot noted that this is not only a terrific announcement for a local company headquartered in Northeast Florida, but also a sign that the economy is turning around.

Apex Technology was founded in Jacksonville, and is now a subsidiary of Belit, Inc. They provide engineering services for structural systems in construction projects. Apex Technology currently serves customers in 14 states and the Caribbean. Apart from Jacksonville, the company also has an office in Tampa, FL and another Mid-Atlantic office in Frederick, MD.

Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown said this was a great example of a successful, hometown company investing in Jacksonville and adding good-paying career jobs in the engineering field.

The City will be filing legislation with the Jacksonville City Council seeking support for the Apex Technology project.

The Jacksonville City Council will also be looking at incentives for another much bigger project that could bring 500 new jobs and up to $91 million in capital investment. The name of the Fortune 500 company behind this advanced manufacturing project is being kept a secret, and it has only been identified as “Project Speed.”

The company would create at least 500 jobs over the next three years. They are seeking $15.4 million in local and state economic development incentives.

Illinois Secures Valence Health Expansion With $11.9M Economic Development Incentives

Valence Health, a leading provider of clinical integration and health plan services, announced plans for an expansion of their operations in Illinois, including 500 new jobs in Chicago over the next five years.

Gov. Pat Quinn announcing Valence Health expansion in Chicago

Gov. Pat Quinn announcing Valence Health expansion in Chicago (photo –

The company is relocating its headquarters to a 125,000-square-foot leased space that will be able to accommodate their growth plans.

Valence Health already has 325 employees in Illinois, and will be adding another 500 in Chicago by 2019.

Governor Pat Quinn said that with this new investment, Valence Health is staking its future in Illinois, utilizing the strong workforce to create hundreds of new jobs.

“Our growing healthcare and technology sectors helped Valence commit to a strong future right here in Illinois,” said Gov. Quinn.

Valence Health, founded in 1990, has a two decade track record of successfully managing risk arrangements and positioning healthcare provider organizations for future payment reforms.

Their health plan services cover everything from medical and financial to analytic and call center services. Customers can choose the full suite of services or a specific part of their operations which they want the company to handle.

Valence Health supports operations at more than 120 hospitals and 39,000 physicians around the nation who cover more than 19.5 million patients.

The company cited several reasons for selecting Chicago as the location for the expansion, including the skilled available workforce, the City’s dedication to healthcare and life sciences innovation, and the incentive package offered by the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity.

The incentive package, worth a total of approximately $11.86 million, includes tax credits under the Illinois Economic Development for a Growing Economy (EDGE) program. In order to receive the credits against their state income tax liability, Valence Health will need to invest at least $16.8 million over a 10-year period on the lease and equipment, create 100 new jobs within the next two years, and add another 400 jobs by 2019.

Valence Health is also being provided $50,000 to assist them with workforce training costs for the new employees the company is planning to hire.

DCEO Director Adam Pollet said Valence Health is at an important place linking technology and healthcare, and the company’s commitment to Illinois speaks well of the state’s culture of innovation and pro-business policies.

Valence Health CEO Phil Kamp said they are proud to call Chicago home, and appreciate the state’s support as they accelerate the company’s growth.

Orlando, Lake Mary Economic Development Teams Collaborate on Deloitte Delivery Center Project

Deloitte, one of the Big Four professional services firms, announced the opening of a new Technology Delivery Center in Lake Mary, Florida that allows them to expand delivery capabilities for their U.S. public and private sector clients.

Opening of Deloitte Delivery Center in Lake Mary, FL

Opening of Deloitte Delivery Center in Lake Mary, FL (photo –

The project involves a capital investment of approximately $35.9 million, and Deloitte Consulting LLP will be establishing the TDC in a leased space of up to 130,000 square feet located in the City of Lake Mary in Seminole County, FL.

Deloitte plans to create 1,000 new jobs at the TDC by the end of 2018. These are high-value jobs with an average annual salary of $60,520, which is 151 percent of the prevailing annual wage in Seminole County.

Deloitte already has 877 employees at five locations in Florida, and employs around 203,000 people round the world.

The company was considering up to five other out-of-state locations that could also provide the required office space in a suburban setting.

Bert Naquin, director of Deloitte Consulting LLP and Center director, said that proximity to respected educational institutions and access to skilled workers, especially in areas such as IT, HR, business and systems engineering, make the Orlando area an optimal location for the Delivery Center.

The City of Lake Mary and Seminole County secured the Deloitte project with assistance from the Orlando Economic Development Commission, Florida High Tech Corridor, the University of Central Florida, and CareerSource Central Florida.

Rick Weddle, president and CEO of the Orlando EDC, said that the selection of Deloitte to locate a major presence in the Orlando region tells the world that Orlando is also a great place for business.

Deloitte is getting local economic development incentives totaling $1.7 million through an interlocal agreement between Seminole County and the City of Lake Mary.

The Jobs Growth Incentive (JGI) initiative is a Seminole County program, but works in partnership with participating local governments. In this case, the City and County are splitting the incentive award to be paid to Deloitte, with both considering approving resolutions authorizing payments of $850,000 each.

According to a memo written by Lake Mary Economic Development Manager Tom Tomerlin to the City Council, Lake Mary will recover its portion of the incentive award through increased property tax revenue within six and a half years.

Tomerlin also mentions the direct impact of more than $60 million in new wages and the large capital investment. Not to mention the indirect and induced impacts associated with the project, and the prospect of helping define Lake Mary as a suitable location for firms that are looking to consolidate high-value operations into a delivery center model.

Lake Mary Mayor David Mealor said they’re thrilled to be selected as the home of Deloitte’s new U.S. Delivery Center, and added that it’s even more fitting because the leased space they are moving into was formerly occupied by Verizon Communications.

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 –

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.

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 (photo –

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.

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 –

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.

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 –

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.

Las Vegas Economic Development Group Helped Bring 3412 Jobs to Southern Nevada

The Las Vegas Global Economic Alliance announced its annual roundup of the results of its economic development efforts during the past fiscal year.

Las Vegas Global Economic Alliance

Las Vegas Global Economic Alliance (photo –

The LVGEA and its partners together assisted 36 companies between July 1, 2013 to June 30, 2014, helping these companies relocate or expand in Southern Nevada.

These efforts resulted in the creation of 3,412 jobs in Clark County during the fiscal year by companies that will be investing $209 million in the region. These projects will have a one-year economic impact of $578 million.

As the main regional economic development organization for Southern Nevada, the LVGEA published a Strategic Plan last year which included a target of creating 1,750 jobs for the fiscal year.

The LVGEA managed to help create nearly double that many jobs by working together with the Nevada Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED), Clark County, and the Cities of Las Vegas, North Las Vegas, Henderson, Mesquite and Boulder City.

Tom R. Skancke, president and CEO of LVGEA, said that as they continue to attract businesses and industries to the region, residents of Southern Nevada are being provided with employment opportunities. Skancke said they’re also diversifying the economy and laying the foundations for the growth of new industries in the Las Vegas Valley.

The companies that received assistance from the organization include BarclayCard and Flowers Foods, among others. These two Henderson economic development projects are notable because of the innovative arrangements worked out for them.

When Citigroup exited the market earlier this year, Barclaycard picked up many of their employees. At the same time, Zappos was relocating from Henderson to downtown Las Vegas, so Barclaycard was able to move into the former Zappos headquarters at the Green Valley Corporate Center in Henderson.

It’s now less than six months after these moves were made, but Barclaycard has already exceeded their goal of hiring 400 employees in Henderson by the end of this year.

The Flowers Foods project likewise came about after the liquidation of Hostess Brands caused a job loss for Henderson, and the facility stayed vacant for a year. The City and the LVGEA then helped Flower Foods bring the facility back online quickly and create 60 jobs.

City of Henderson Economic Development Manager Barbra Coffee said that putting over 60 people to work within three months of the company’s first visit to Henderson represented a real success in their ability to get the facility open and operating in a timely manner.

Ohio Awards Economic Development Incentives for Projects Involving $471M and 4000 Jobs

At its latest monthly meeting, the Ohio Tax Credit Authority (TCA) approved state economic development incentives for 11 projects.

Ohio Job Creation

Ohio Job Creation (photo –

These projects are expected to spur nearly $471 million in investment across Ohio, in the process creating 2,103 jobs with $73,434,938 in new payroll, in addition to helping retain 1,928 jobs.

The biggest job creators in the lot are projects being undertaken by Zulily, Inc., Speedway LLC and Kraft Foods Group, Inc.

Seattle, WA-based Zulily Inc (NASDAQ:ZU), a leading online retailer for moms, is planning a relocation and expansion of their operations in Ohio. The company has not finalized a location as yet for this project within Ohio.

Zulily expects to create 900 new jobs, and add $28 million to their existing payroll of $4.8 million. The TCA approved a 75 percent, 12-year Job Creation Tax Credit (JCTC) for this project.

Speedway LLC, which operates a chain of combination gas stations and convenience stores in the Midwest, is planning an expansion project in Mad River Township, OH. They expect to create 350 new jobs, adding another $14 million to their existing payroll of $39 million. Speedway is getting a 60 percent, 10-year JCTC.

Kraft Foods is expanding their operations in the City of Coshocton, OH. They expect to create 300 new full-time jobs, in the process adding $8.7 million in new payroll to their existing $14.1 million payroll. Kraft Foods has also been approved for a 60 percent, 10-year JCTC.

The remaining eight projects approved for Ohio economic development incentives are as follows:

Core-Mark Holding Company, Inc. – Location not finalized; 150 new jobs with $6 million in new payroll; 50 percent, seven-year JCTC;

SGP South Point, LLC – Village of South Point; 100 new jobs with $5.5 million in new payroll; 55 percent, eight-year JCTC;

TruBridge, Inc. – City of North Canton; 100 new jobs with $2.5 million in new payroll; 40 percent, five-year JCTC;

iHealth Solutions LLC – Village of South Point; 75 new jobs with $3 million in new payroll; 50 percent, seven-year JCTC;

Sugar Creek Packing Co. – West Chester Township; 58 new jobs with $1.8 million in new payroll; 45 percent, seven-year JCTC;

Basecraft – City of Columbus; 30 new jobs with $1.2 million in new payroll; 40 percent, five-year JCTC;

MPW Industrial Services, Inc. – Union Township; 25 new jobs with $1 million in new payroll; 50 percent, six-year JCTC;

Goken America, LLC – City of Dublin; 15 new jobs with $1.6 million in new payroll; 45 percent, five-year JCTC;

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