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Inward Investment Guides

2014 Gold & Silver Shovel Awards: Investment Projects of the Year

Area Development Magazine Special Presentation (Q2 2014)

MSC Aerospace Cedar City, Utah MSC Aerospace (MSC), in partnership with subsidiaries SyberJet Aircraft and Metalcraft Technologies, will construct a $400 million facility in Cedar City to manufacture business jets, creating 1,200 new jobs. MSC, which already owns 250,000 square feet of manufacturing and hangar space at the Cedar City airport, makes components for aerospace companies.

Over the 20-year life of the project, MSC will pay nearly $130 million in state taxes and over $1 billion in payroll. “This is a landmark moment for the community of Cedar City and is an economic development game-changer,” says Brennan Wood, economic development director for Cedar City. “A project of this size and scope does not go unnoticed by the manufacturing industry or site selection professionals.”

Boeing North Charleston, South Carolina Boeing plans to expand its 787 Dreamliner campus in North Charleston, investing $1 billion and adding at least 2,000 jobs by 2020. The company is acquiring additional acreage adjacent to its campus to build an information technology “center of excellence” that will require about 1,000 employees; the other 1,000 workers will consist of engineers and production employees.

The expansion is needed to keep up with increased orders for commercial airplanes. “With unprecedented demand for commercial airplanes, including a forecast of another 34,000 airplanes required over the next 20 years, Boeing is positioned for significant and sustained growth in the years ahead,” says Boeing South Carolina spokesperson Candy Eslinger.

Cerner Corp. Kansas City, Missouri A leading provider of IT and technology solutions for hospitals and other healthcare providers, Cerner Corporation will build a $4.3 billion, 4.1-million-square-foot campus in south Kansas City, creating up to 15,000 new jobs. The campus will include office buildings, data centers, a daycare center, and retail shops. Kansas City provided $1.63 billion in tax incentives to win the project.

“Over the 30-plus years we’ve been here, there have been a lot of milestones for the company,” says Cerner co-founder Cliff Illig. “Our preference is to grow in Kansas City. This is as big a statement as we can make about where we want our future.”

“After leading the nation in technology job growth for two years running, Cerner’s historic expansion in Kansas City cements Missouri’s position as hub for high-tech, high-paying jobs,” says governor Jay Nixon. “Today it’s clear that our strategy of providing a competitive business climate and investing in our highly-skilled workforce is resulting in more jobs and more investments in the Show-Me State.”

Engineered Floors Whitfield and Murray Counties, Georgia Leading carpet manufacturer Engineered Floors, based in Dalton, will invest $450 million to construct new facilities in Whitfield and Murray counties, creating 2,000 new jobs over the next five years. The company already has several manufacturing facilities and a distribution center in northwest Georgia.

“We are pleased that these new facilities will allow for further job creation for the area,” comments Robert E. Shaw, CEO of Engineered Floors. “The exemption of sales tax on energy in the manufacturing process that was put in place during the 2012 legislative session makes a significant difference to manufacturers looking to grow and succeed.”

Global Foundries Malta, New York Global Foundries, one of the fastest-growing semiconductor companies in the world, will build a $2 billion, 500,000-square-foot-plus research and development center at its Fab 8 chip factory in Malta, creating about 1,000 jobs. The new center, which includes 90,000 square feet of cleanroom and laboratory space for developing new semiconductor technologies, will be the main global R&D center for the company. The $2 billion expansion will bring the company’s total investment at Fab 8 to nearly $9 billion over the last six years.

“The new center will help us bridge between the lab and the fab by taking research conducted with partners and further developing the technologies to make them ready for volume manufacturing,” states Ajit Manocha, CEO for Global Foundries.

“The growth of GLOBALFOUNDRIES in Saratoga County, through the Technology Development Center (TDC), means an increase in the number of good paying jobs, opportunities for expansion of the supply chain, and the continuation of a robust business environment,” added Dennis Brobston, president of the Saratoga Economic Development Corp.

2014 Gold Shovel Awards: The Winning States

  • Texas
  • Georgia
  • Missouri
  • South Carolina
  • Utah
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MethodologyArea Development’s annual Gold and Silver Shovel Awards recognize states for their achievements in attracting high-value investment projects that will create a significant number of new jobs in their communities. We collected information from all 50 states about their top-10 job-creation and investment projects initiated in 2013 (only those projects that actually had monies invested, “broke ground,” began an expansion, started new hiring, etc. were considered). Based on a combination of weighted factors — including the number of new jobs to be created in relation to the state’s population, the combined dollar amount of the investments, the number of new facilities, the diversity of industry represented — five states achieving the highest weighted overall scores are awarded Area Development’s 2014 Gold Shovels in five population categories: 15+ million, 8+ to 15 million, 5+ to 8 million, 3+ to 5 million, and fewer than 3 million. Runners up in each of these population categories are awarded 2014 Silver Shovels.

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