Job Creation

Newell Rubbermaid Plans Design Center in Kalamazoo, MI

The next new sharpie or paper mate you see is likely going to be designed in Kalamazoo, Michigan.

Newell Rubbermaid design center rendering

Newell Rubbermaid design center rendering (photo – michigan.gov)

Newell Rubbermaid Inc. (NYSE: NWL), whose brand portfolio includes Sharpie, Paper Mate and Rubbermaid, is planning to set up a design center in Kalamazoo where it will consolidate all its graphic and product design work for the U.S.

The company is investing $2.3 million to set up the design center and will create 100 high-paying design jobs with average annual wages in between $70,000 to $90,000.

Kalamazoo successfully competed for the design center project against competing sites in Chicago and Atlanta, where the company has its global corporate headquarters.

Chuck Jones, chief design and R&D officer for Newell Rubbermaid, thanked Michigan for its support and cited Western Michigan University’s talent pool of designers as one of the main factors in favor of Kalamazoo.

The City of Kalamazoo has offered the company $164,000 in tax abatements as local incentives. The state has approved a $2 million performance-based grant from the Michigan EDC’s Michigan Strategic Fund.

Southwest Michigan First, the privately funded economic development organization serving the Southwest Michigan area, has been working on this project for a year.

Southwest Michigan First will be putting up $4 million for construction of the Newell Rubbermaid design center building at the WMU Business Technology and Research Park. They will then lease the building to the company.

MEDC President and CEO Michael A. Finney said the Newell design center would diversify the state’s economy, and said they were happy to support this collaborative effort involving WMU, the City of Kalamazoo and Southwest Michigan First.

Ron Kitchens, CEO of Southwest Michigan First, said Newell Rubbermaid would like its new location because the region and company‚Äôs cultures are ‚Äúrooted in innovation and the creation of things that change peoples’ lives.‚Äù

Atlanta, Georgia-based Newell Rubbermaid is an S&P 500 company with $5.9 billion in sales last year. The company had 19,900 employees around the world as of Dec 2012.

Coeur d’Alene Mines Relocating HQ From Idaho to Chicago

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho-based Coeur d’Alene Mines Corporation (NYSE: CDE, TSX:CDM) announced that it was relocating its global headquarters to Chicago, Illinois.

Coeur Mining

Coeur Mining (photo – coeur.com)

The company will be adding 100 jobs in downtown Chicago, with at least 60 new jobs being created within the next one year.

Coeur has four gold and silver mines in the Americas, including one each in Nevada and Alaska.They have 2,000 employees worldwide.

The $1.5 billion company is the largest primary silver producer based in the U.S., and has a growing presence in gold production.

At the heart of its relocation reasoning was the need for a new corporate headquarters in a global city that would help its transformation from a regional firm to an international one. Following the relocation in Sept this year, the company will be changing its name to Coeur Mining next year.

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said Coeur could have relocated to any number of cities, but chose Chicago for its international market access and deep pool of talent. Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn talked up the state’s transportation infrastructure, and said Illinois has what it takes to support growing businesses.

To secure the project, Illinois has offered Coeur $1.68 million in EDGE corporate income tax credits over 10 years, which are tied to the creation of 60 new jobs.

Another factor that may have helped Chicago land Coeur is that the company’s president and CEO Mitchell Krebs was stationed in Chicago for seven years until 2008, when he moved to Idaho as the CFO.

Krebs cited both the talent pool and Chicago’s status as an international transportation hub as deciding factors for the relocation. He also praised the amount of access and help provided by both the Mayor and Governor.

World Business Chicago was involved in the project, and helped showcase to Coeur what Chicago and Illinois could do for the company.

Coeur has 65 employees in its current Idaho headquarters, and offered all of them positions in Chicago. Only 20 of them took up the offer and will be following the company to Illinois.

For its part, Idaho tried to talk Coeur out of relocating, but there was not much to be done.  Everybody from Idaho Gov. Butch Otter to Coeur d’Alene Mayor Sandi Bloem met with the company, but Coeur had already decided that moving out of the state was necessary for its future growth plans.

New Standard Register Facility to Create 360 Jobs in Indiana

Standard Register (NYSE: SR) announced that it would be opening a new facility for digital printing, kitting and distribution in Jeffersonville, Indiana.

Standard Register

Photo – Standard Register

The project calls for a $10 million investment by the company, and will create 360 new jobs by 2016.

The state-of-the-art 335,000 square foot Center of Excellence will make use of the latest technology in advanced color management and order fulfillment.

“Standard Register’s $10 million investment in this new Center of Excellence allows us to operate more efficiently, advance our digital printing capabilities and leverage the deep capability of the local workforce to better serve our customers,” said Joseph P. Morgan, Jr., president and chief executive officer of Standard Register.

The location in the Greater Louisville Kentucky-Southern Indiana metropolitan area offers quite a few advantages for the company, including easy access to the UPS Worldport package handling facility.

The River Ridge Commerce Center site they have chosen is a certified shovel ready site. The company expects to improve on speed-to-market for its communications products.

In order to secure the project, the Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC) has approved the company for up to $2.3 million in performance-based EDGE (Economic Development for a Growing Economy) tax credits.

Standard Register will also get up to $175,000 in the form of a training grant. The River Ridge Development Authority is additionally offering property tax abatements as a local incentive.

Jeffersonville Mayor Mike Moore said they were very happy about the company’s choice of the River Ridge Commerce Center.

“The opportunities these 360 positions provide for our citizens are remarkable. And turning a vacant facility into an enhanced asset for both the company and the community is a definite win-win,” said Mayor Moore.

The Dayton, Ohio-based Standard Register said it is planning to move some operations from its other existing facilities to this new center in Indiana. The Company has more than 2,200 employees spread across 30 facilities, including one in Shelbyville, Indiana which has 85-full time employees.

The new facility in Indiana is expected to open later this year.

Macy’s Plans $35M Expansion of Goodyear, AZ Distribution Center

Macy’s, Inc. (NYSE:M) announced plans to expand its Goodyear, Arizona distribution center for online orders.

Macy's Fulfillment Center in Goodyear, AZ

Macy’s Fulfillment Center in Goodyear, AZ (photo – ci.goodyear.az.us)

The expansion will require a capital investment of $35 million, and is expected to create 125 new full-time jobs.

The expansion project involves adding 360,000 square feet of space to the existing 600,000-square-foot facility which was opened by Macy’s in 2008.

Goodyear Mayor Georgia Lord said she was thrilled by Macy’s selection of Goodyear for the expansion.

‚ÄúMacy’s has been a great corporate citizen, community partner and major employer these past five years,‚Äù added Mayor Lord. ‚ÄúMacy’s is one of our most critical corporate anchors. Their expansion demonstrates Goodyear is continuing to grow and we’re ready for businesses to grow with us.”

The Goodyear fulfillment center for online orders placed on Macys.com is one of three such Macy’s distribution centers. The other two are in Portland, Tennessee and Martinsburg, West Virginia.

Another fulfillment center in Cheshire, Connecticut fulfills orders placed on Bloomingdales.com. Macy’s also has a network of 20 traditional distribution centers for fulfilling orders placed by physical stores.

The online order distribution centers are much more beneficial to the community they are in because of the relatively huge number of jobs created. A lot of manpower is needed to pack and ship the vast number of single item orders, as compared to the easier job of packing and sending a limited number of large orders placed by stores.

The Goodyear fulfillment center already has 500 full time Macy’s associates, and this will go up to 625 will the creation of 125 new jobs. This count does not include seasonal jobs for the holiday season.

Macy’s has an “omni-channel strategy” for the four fulfillment centers mentioned above. These centers are capable of handling orders seamlessly for customers shopping in stores, online and via mobile devices.

“Our online fulfillment centers, as well as the 500 Macy’s stores that will be equipped to fulfill orders by the end of 2013, handle customer orders placed online, as well as ship products to customers who shop in stores that may not stock the specific product they need. Through our omnichannel strategy, we can access the total inventory of our company for every customer,” said R.B. Harrison, Macy’s, Inc.’s chief omnichannel officer.

Apart from this state-of-the-art omnichannel capability, the Macy’s distribution center in Arizona is also known for housing one of the largest solar array installations in the nation on its roof.  The 3.5 megawatt solar energy system provides 70 percent of the building’s energy needs, and offsets an annual 3,500 tons of Co2 emissions.

Actavis Expands Manufacturing Facility in Broward County, FL

Actavis, Inc. (NYSE: ACT) announced expansion plans for its pharmaceutical manufacturing facility in Davie, Broward County, Florida.

Actavis

Actavis (photo – actavis.com)

The expansion project calls for an investment of $40.5 million by Actavis, and will create 220 new jobs.

The company plans to expand its warehousing operations at the Davie site by 13,000 square feet, and will be expanding the manufacturing operations by another 16,700 square feet.

The Town of Davie was assisted in securing the expansion by the Greater Fort Lauderdale Alliance (GFLA) and Enterprise Florida Inc.

Davie Mayor Judy Paul said Actavis had a vital part of the community and they were happy to work with the company for their expansion. Bob Swindell, president and CEO of GFLA, expanded on that by talking about Actavis as one of the leading employers in Broward County.

Swindell added that the expansion was an indication that their efforts aimed at growing the “strong South Florida life sciences cluster continues to pay off.”

That, and the fact that Actavis was awarded a total of $2.81 million in state and local incentives. This includes $1.1 million under the Qualified Target Industries (QTI) program, with 20 percent coming from Davie and the remaining 80 percent from the state as matching funds.

In addition to the QTI tax refunds, Davie is separately providing $440,000 and the State of Florida is chipping in with another $690,000. Actavis has also been approved for $584,500 as a training grant.

Paul Bisaro, president and CEO of Actavis, Inc., said the company was honored to have such support for its expansion from the Governor’s Office, Enterprise Florida and locally from town officials in Davie.

Bisaro hinted that this kind of support would help them expand in other Florida locations. Actavis currently has 1,400 employees in Florida, with additional facilities in Sunrise and Weston. They have a packaging and distribution facility in Sunrise. Weston has the company’s R&D operations and their huge Anda, Inc. distribution division.

The Davie manufacturing facility, which produces 2.2 billion units annually, has been operational since 1992, but only came under Actavis management in 2006.

Parsippany, New Jersey-based Actavis, Inc. was known as Watson Pharmaceuticals Inc. until January 2013, and changed its name to reflect its acquisition of Actavis Group last year. Their global headquarters is in Zug, Switzerland.

The company is the world’s third largest prescription drug maker, and generated revenues of $ 5.9 billion last year. They have 17,000 employees around the world in 30 manufacturing plants and 17 R&D facilities, in addition to other distribution and sales offices.

Medient Plans $90M Studio in Effingham, GA

Medient Studios, Inc. (MDNT:OTC BB) and the Effingham County Industrial Development Authority (IDA) in Georgia have signed an MOU to develop what is billed to be the largest movie studio yet in America.

Medient's Manu Kumaran at Effingham IDA meeting

Medient’s Manu Kumaran at Effingham IDA meeting (photo – Effingham Chamber)

The company announced that it will invest more than $90 million to develop a 1,500-acre lot along I-16 into a campus that will include the studio and other facilities.

Apart from the movie studios, the site will include capability for video game production. It will also have restaurants, shopping, a hotel, golf course, amphitheater and botanical gardens.

With the help of all this, the company hopes to turn the site into a tourist attraction.

The IDA is helping out with $1.25 million for developing the site, and is also entering into a 20-year capital lease agreement with the company. In return, Medient has agreed to invest $90 million and create at least 1,000 new jobs over the next five years.

The movie studio alone would need 400 employees, with the video game production facility requiring another 200 employees. All told, the company expects to employ more than 1,200 employees by the time they complete the first phase of the development.

John Henry, CEO of the Effingham IDA, said that the project was potentially a game-changer for the region and its benefits will have an impact over the long term.

The plan also calls for the project to be made environment-friendly and sustainable with the deployment of hydro and solar technologies.

“We are confident that this exciting project will become a prototype of environmentally sustainable construction, management and living while also promoting a public/private partnership for the region and for the state,” said Manu Kumaran, chairman and CEO of Medient.

The IDA has been working on this project for a year, and Effingham not only won out over Atlanta and Savannah, but also out of state sites in Pennsylvania and New York that were under consideration.

Kumaran praised the Effingham IDA for getting the deal done in a “professional and efficient manner.” He also cited the pleasant weather in Effingham as one of the factors that helped them make the decision.

The Los Angeles, California-based Medient has so far produced 14 movies, and the new Georgia facility will be their first own movie studio.

Auto Insurer GEICO to Add 1200 Jobs in Carmel, Indiana

The Government Employees Insurance Company (GEICO) announced that it will be opening a customer service center in Carmel, Indiana and plans to add 1,200 new jobs.

IN Gov. Mike Pence at GEICO announcement

IN Gov. Mike Pence at GEICO announcement (photo -IEDC)

The announcement was made jointly by Indiana Governor Mike Pence and GEICO Chairman Tony Nicely.

The Chevy Chase, Maryland-based automotive insurer said in a statement it would be investing millions of dollars to open up a 109,000-square-foot office in the Indianapolis metro area.

The office will be used by insurance agents, along with management, training and support staff for the agents.

In order to secure this project for the state, the Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC) has offered GEICO performance-based tax credits worth $10 million, along with another $400,000 in training grants.

The tax credits are contingent on GEICO making good on its agreement to create 1,200 new jobs by 2016. The City of Carmel is also providing support for the project.

Nicely said they chose central Indiana because “we know there is a talented and well-educated workforce in this area and we want to offer people long-term career opportunities as we continue to expand.”

Gov. Pence also emphasized this point by saying that the state’s greatest selling point was its quality workforce. He added that the state’s low tax climate, fiscal stability and business-friendly policies made “days like today happen.”

Carmel Mayor Jim Brainard said he was thrilled that GEICO chose Carmel for its very first location in Indiana. “When a company with a solid reputation such as GEICO decides to invest in our city, we realize a long term gain through economic development and job growth,” added Mayor Brainard.

GEICO is a wholly owned subsidiary of Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway. GEICO ranks third on the list of the biggest auto insurers in the U.S. with 11 million automobile insurance policies that cover 18 million vehicles.

Before this Indiana office was announced, GEICO had 12 major offices around the nation and 27,000 employees. GEICO has already started recruiting for the new positions in Indiana. Interested candidates can apply for these positions in the careers section of the company’s website.

South Dakota Teams up With Eagle Creek Software to Create 1000 Jobs

Eagle Creek Software Services announced a partnership with the state of South Dakota and city of Vermillion to bring 1,000 rural high-tech jobs to the state.

Eagle Creek Software Services

Eagle Creek Software Services (photo – eaglecrk.com)

As a start, the company is building a $10 million technology center in Vermillion which will house 200 of these jobs.

“This is a great day for South Dakota and the resurgent technology business in America,” said SD Gov. Dennis Daugaard. “With a $10 million investment in the Vermillion community and new career path for University of South Dakota students, we are on track to create meaningful jobs that will benefit the community and make South Dakota more globally competitive in the information technology sector.”

Through a partnership with the Board of Regents and the University of South Dakota (USD), the newly launched Information Technology Consultant Academy will provide eligible students with a scholarship and a strategic career track to employment as an IT consultant.

“Technical skills are only one piece of core IT competencies. Today’s IT reality requires an understanding of U.S. business practices, communications skills beyond technology and a focus on time-to-market. By better educating our workforce, Eagle Creek Software Services can create a more sustainable and scalable IT solution while growing jobs in America,” said Ken Behrendt, president of Eagle Creek Software Services.

The IT Consultant Academy at USD will create a well-trained local workforce in South Dakota who can take advantage of high paying jobs. Graduates of the certificate program can expect to make between $40,000 to 45,000. Students with a master’s may earn in between $50,000 to $60,000.

“The challenges of today’s job market call for new skills and approaches,” said James W. Abbott, president of the University of South Dakota. “Our mission as a university should be to prepare students to succeed in an increasingly high-tech workforce. We applaud and are proud to partner with Eagle Creek on this innovative project. The Information Technology Consultant Academy will put students on a career path for success.”

“Vermillion is already known as a destination for world class higher education,” said Steve Howe of the Vermillion Area Chamber and Development Company. “This announcement further positions our city as a leader in technology and a global force in the IT industry. Vermillion is proud to be on the forefront of South Dakota’s technology surge.”

Minneapolis-based Eagle Creek Software Services employs more than 300 consultants, and has developed a services delivery model which they call the “Dakota Model.” It utilizes U.S.-based project centers in North Dakota and South Dakota, and this latest project in Vermillion is being labeled as an expansion of the Dakota Model.

Study – UAS Industry to Create 70,000 Jobs in Three Years

The Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) unveiled a new study which finds that the unmanned aircraft industry is poised to create more than 70,000 new American jobs in the first three years following the integration of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) into U.S. national airspace system (NAS).

UAS economic impact study

UAS economic impact study (photo – auvsi.org)

Integration is scheduled to take place in 2015. Beyond the first three years, the study projects that more than 100,000 new jobs will be created by 2025.

Highlights from the study:-

1. Economic impact of UAS-NAS integration will total more than $13.6 billion in the first three years, and will cumulatively add up into $82.1 billion for the decade from 2015 to 2025.

2. Out of the more than 70,000 jobs created in the first three years, 34,000 or more will be manufacturing jobs. The industry will support 103,776 jobs by 2025.

3. Tax revenue to the states will total more than $482 million in the first 11 years.

4. Every year the UAS-NAS integration is put off results in a loss of $10 billion in economic impact, or $27.6 million per day.

The economic impact and benefits are skewed heavily in favor of a handful of states. The top five are California, Washington, Texas, Florida and Arizona.

California has the biggest slice of the pie, with an economic impact of $2.39 billion and 12,292 jobs by 2017. Washington gets $1.312 billion and 6746 jobs, while Texas is the last member of the billion-dollar impact club with $1.087 billion in economic impact and 5588 jobs.

You can see an interactive map of the state-by-state economic impact here.

“This is an incredibly exciting time for an industry developing technology that will benefit society, as well as the economy,” said Michael Toscano, president and CEO of AUVSI. “Integrating UAS into the national airspace will lead to new and expanded uses, which means the creation of quality, high-paying American jobs.”

The study notes that future events – such as the establishment of FAA Test Sites – will ultimately determine where many of the tens of thousands of new jobs will flow.

“While we project more than 100,000 new jobs by 2025, states that create favorable regulatory and business environments for the industry and the technology will likely siphon jobs away from states that do not,” wrote the report’s author, Darryl Jenkins, a former professor at George Washington University and Embry Riddle Aeronautical University.

Read the full UAS economic impact report from AUVSI.

Tinderbox Gets $1.37M Tax Credits for Indianapolis Expansion

Indianapolis-based Tinderbox, Inc., a sales and marketing software solutions provider, announced plans today to expand its operations in Indiana.

Indiana

Indiana (photo – in.gov)

Tinderbox plans to invest $540,000 to grow its cloud-based platform business, and will be adding 95 new jobs by 2016.

“High-tech, high-wage jobs at a homegrown company is the latest positive momentum for our economy,” said IN Governor Mike Pence. “More than anything else, job growth depends on building a pro-business environment, and Tinderbox’s decision reaffirms that Indiana is a place where high-tech business makes sense.”

Launched in 2010, TinderBox provides software for sales and marketing teams to accelerate the customer acquisition process.

The company services clients such as Angie’s List, Dominion Dealer Solutions and Delivra with a comprehensive management solution for marketing and sales content, including proposals, sales presentations and contracts.

“Tinderbox is a great success story illustrating our efforts to keep our homegrown Hoosier companies right here in Indianapolis,‚Äù said Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard. ‚ÄúDespite strong competition against cities in the Midwest and on the west coast, we have proven once again that our work in cultivating a strong and inviting business community brings results.‚Äù

To secure the expansion, the Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC) offered Tinderbox, Inc. up to $1,375,000 in conditional tax credits and up to $55,000 in training grants. The City of Indianapolis will consider additional property tax abatement at the request of Develop Indy.

Dustin Sapp, founder and president of TinderBox, was among the group of entrepreneurs labeled “Indiana’s Tech Dream Team” who represented Indiana at the White House for a meeting last month with administration officials including Todd Park, chief technology officer of the U.S.

At that time, Isaac Pellerin, revenue marketing manager for Tinderbox, said in a blog post that they were “proud of the culture of innovation that we’re part of in Indianapolis.”

This belief apparently made it easier for them to make the expansion decision in favor of Indiana. “It was an easy decision to choose Indiana as the place to expand with its growing high-tech sector and stable business climate,” said Sapp. “We’re looking forward to a successful future of economic impact here in Indianapolis.”

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