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2017 Gold & Silver Shovel Awards: California, Florida, Pennsylvania and Texas Awarded Silver Shovels - States with Populations over 12 Million

Q2 2017

CaliforniaThe Golden State added more than 300,000 jobs last year, and economists expect it’ll keep outpacing the nation at least for the next few years. Most sectors moved in a positive direction as 2016 progressed. The noteworthy projects announced in 2016 represent a decent cross-section of the economy, from technology and life sciences to automotive and aerospace. Given California’s huge population of potential customers, distribution will always be a job-creating sector, too.

2016 Top Projects: California

Population: 38 Million

Company City N/E Job Creation Investment Industry
1. Snapchat Venice Beach E 1,194 $32 million Mobile Applications
2. NextEV San Jose N 917 $138.3 million Automotive
3. Kite Pharma El Segundo E 621 $114.8 million Biomedical Products
4. OWB Packers Brawley N 605 $38.5 million Food Processing
5. Ulta Fresno N 542 $48.3 million Distribution
6. Lineage Logistics Oakland E 532 $91.5 million Warehousing
7. Draexlmaier Automotive Livermore N 326 $25 million Automotive
8. Millennium Space Systems El Segundo E 284 $19.9 million Aerospace
9. BioLegend San Diego N 258 $99.1 million Biologic Products
10. Atara Biotherapeutics Thousand Oaks E 206 $40.4 million Biopharma Research

Snapchat led the way with a pledge of nearly 1,200 jobs in its hometown of Venice Beach. The tech company has quickly grown into a major employer, and though that’s generally welcome news, an interesting twist to this story is that some locals are starting to resist its continued growth and are urging it to start considering expansions elsewhere. Meanwhile, an electric-car startup called NextEV has enjoyed a welcome mat in San Jose, where the company’s roster of engineers and developers is building quickly.

Bioscience-related developments will bring hundreds of jobs in multiple places, led by the Kite Pharma manufacturing facility in El Segundo, where the latest T-cell therapies for fighting cancer will be produced. BioLegend’s headquarters campus in San Diego will be a center of development in the areas of cancer, neurosciences, and immunology. And Atara Biotherapeutics picked Thousand Oaks for R&D.

Agribusiness is, of course, a major economic driver in California, and in this year’s list of top projects that sector is represented by OWB Packers, which agreed to reopen an idled beef packing plant in Brawley. That ode to California’s heritage is balanced by the off-world focus of Millennium Space Systems, a satellite manufacturer growing in El Segundo.

FloridaTourism and agriculture are the biggest drivers of the Florida economy. That’s no secret, and the state gets more economic activity out of beaches, theme parks, orange groves, and tomatoes than a lot of jurisdictions get out of all activities combined, including those some might find less glamorous or tasty. For good measure, Florida cashes in big-time on such sectors as aerospace/aviation, life sciences, and financial services, and those industries are well represented in its list of top projects from 2016.

2016 Top Projects: Florida*

Population: 19.9 Million

Company City N/E Job Creation Investment Industry
1. Jacksonville N 1,500 $198 million Fulfillment Center
2. LignoTech Fernandina Beach N 50 $135 million Advanced Materials
3. B. Braun Medical, Inc. Daytona Beach N 175 $100.5 million Life Sciences
4. OneWeb Satellites Merritt Island N 250 $85 million Aerospace
5. KLX Aerospace Solutions Miami E 400 $69 million Distribution/Services
6. Arthrex Naples E 560 $65.3 million Life Sciences
7. AutoZone Ocala N 240 $50 millionLogistics/Distribution
8. GKN Aerostructures North America Bay County N 170 $55 millionAviation/Aerospace
9. ADP, LLC Maitland N 1,600 $28.4 million Financial/Professional Services
10. Hotwire Communications, Ltd. Ft. Lauderdale E 375 $27 million Information Technology
*Represents a state/local sponsor

In fact, in the financial/professional services world, ADP is a big player in payroll processing, and its regional headquarters project in Maitland makes it a big local player, too. More than 500 jobs linked to life sciences are part of the Arthrex project in Naples; the company is in the business of medical devices and surgical supplies. Meanwhile, Pennsylvania-based B. Braun Medical’s $100 million investment in Daytona Beach is to generate nearly 200 jobs. And Jacksonville is welcoming development that is becoming increasingly common across the country — Amazon fulfillment that will provide work for 1,500.

Aerospace investments include a 250-job OneWeb Satellites plant on the Space Coast that will get the area into the work of building satellites, not just launching them — the company hopes to turn out as many as 15 communication satellites a week. In making the announcement last year, the company’s CEO, Brian Holz, noted the importance of labor in the business of satellite construction. “Satellites today are really manufactured in artisan way: It’s labor-intense, very hands-on, and it takes a long time,” Holz told Florida Today.

PennsylvaniaSome 20 Fortune 500 companies call Pennsylvania home, and the state touts economic strength in manufacturing, life sciences, agribusiness, tourism, and such focused areas as plastics and natural gas. Projects ran the gamut across industries last year, from the state’s longstanding steel sector to pharmaceuticals to frozen foods.

2016 Top Projects: Pennsylvania*

Population: 12.78 Million

Company City N/E Job Creation Investment Industry
1. Royal Dutch Shell Potter N 600 $6 billion Petrochemicals
2. FedEx Corp. Northampton N 680 $227 million Shipping/Logistics
3. Amazon Palmer & Pittston Townships N 850 N/A* Fulfillment Center
4. NLMK Pennsylvania, LLC Farrell E 25 $80 million Steel Products
5. Cerner Corp. Malvern E 250 $75 million Healthcare IT
6. Northpoint Development Inc. - Hudson Bay Co. Pottsville E 207 $50 million Distribution
7. Lebanon Valley Cold Storage Lebanon N 131 $38.7 million Frozen Foods
8. Almac Group, Inc. Lansdale E 312 $24 million Pharmaceuticals
9. Champion Modular Susquehanna Township N 246 $4.8 million Modular Homes
10. Targeted Pet Treats Warren E 115 $3.4 million Pet Foods
* Confidential
*Represents a state/local sponsor

One of Pennsylvania’s biggest 2016 headlines came in April, when Royal Dutch Shell announced plans for an ethane cracker facility in Beaver County. It’s a big deal, because it’s the first major U.S. petrochemical project of its kind away from the Gulf Coast. The project is worth 600 ongoing jobs, which is plenty significant, but the real impact is much broader. That’s because the plant will supply a wide range of manufacturers that rely on polyethylene — that’s what ties this into the all-important plastics sector and promises to help that industry grow.

The big business of healthcare IT is a great opportunity, too, and Pennsylvania benefits from its expanding connection to Kansas City-based Cerner, one of the leading creators of electronic medical record technology. Pennsylvania also joins the list of states with ties to Amazon, which plans 850 fulfillment center jobs. Also in the area of shipping and logistics, FedEx is investing $227 million in Northampton County, creating 282 full-time and 398 part-time jobs, according to the Governor’s office.

TexasThey may be miles apart, but Pennsylvania and Texas are holding similar Silver Shovel celebrations. Even as Pennsylvania cheers the promise of polyethylene away from the Gulf Coast, Texas continues to reap economic gains from polyethylene-related projects. Three of them are on the state’s list of major 2016 projects: ExxonMobil in Beaumont, M&G Chemicals in Corpus Christi, and LyondellBasell in LaPorte.

2016 Top Projects: Texas*

Population: 27.86 Million

Company City N/E Job Creation Investment Industry
1. GM Financial Arlington E 1,300 $35 million Financial Services
2. Amazon Houston N 1,000 $136 million Fulfillment Center
3. Lockheed Martin Fort Worth E 1,000 $1.2 billion Aerospace
4. McKesson Corp. Irving N 1,000 $157 million Headquarters & Distribution
5. AmerisourceBergen Corp. Carrollton N 800 $113 million Pharmaceutical Services
6. ExxonMobil Beaumont E 40 $1.2 billion Polyethylene
7. Samsung Austin E 250 $1 billion Semiconductors
8. M&G Chemicals Corpus Christi N 250 $800 million Polyethylene & PTA
9. LyondellBasell LaPorte N 75 $700 million Polyethylene
10. Bed, Bath & Beyond Lewisville N 800 $23 million Fulfillment Center
*Represents a state/local sponsor

Meanwhile, a thousand jobs are on the way from a major healthcare player, McKesson, which distributes pharmaceuticals and medical supplies. The company’s U.S. Pharmaceuticals Group is making the move from San Francisco to Irving. And, as Pennsylvania and other states roll out the red carpet for Amazon, so does Texas, where a Houston fulfillment center promises another thousand jobs.

The biggest news, from a jobs perspective, came from GM Financial, the automaker’s in-house lender, which has Arlington operations. Business for GM Financial has been booming, so its operation is expanding to make room for 1,300 more people.

In the aerospace sector, Lockheed Martin announced a 10-figure investment that is to yield a thousand jobs. Another billion-dollar investment will beef up Samsung’s Austin semiconductor operations.

2017 Gold Shovel Awards: The Winning States

  • Illinois
  • Georgia
  • Arizona
  • Kentucky
  • Mississippi
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2017 Gold & Silver Shovel Awards: Billion Dollar(s) Projects Of The Year (2016)

Project Location Jobs Investment
Shandong Sun Paper Arkadelphia, AR 250 $1B
Tellurian Investments Calcasieu Parish, LA 551 $11.8Bb
Venture Global LNG Plaquemines Parish 250 $8.5B
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles LLC Sterling Heights, MI 700 $1.5B
Ford Motor Co. Expansion Livonia, MI 500 $1.4B
Continental Tire Hinds County, MS 2,500 $1.5B
Royal Dutch Shell Potter, PA 600 $6B
General Motors Spring Hill, TN 1,431 $1B
St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital
Memphis, TN 1,800 $1B
Lockheed Martin Fort Worth, TX 1,000 $1.2B
ExxonMobil Beaumont, TX 40 $1.2B
Samsung Austin, TX 250 $1B
Read More

2017 Gold & Silver Shovel Awards: Large Job-Creating Projects Of The Year (2016)*

Project Location Jobs Investment
Cognizant Technology Solutions Des Moines, IA 1,014 $9M
Under Armour Sparrows, MD 1,000 $174M
Continental Tire Hinds County, MS 2,500 $1.5M
Topship LLC Gulfport, MS 1,000 $68M
JPMorgan Chase Jersey City, NJ 2,150 $68.3M
St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital
Memphis, TN 1,800 $1B
General Motors Spring Hill, TN 1,431 $1B
GM Financial Arlington, TX 1,300 $35M
Lockheed Martin Fort Worth, TX 1,000 $1.2B
McKesson Corp. Irving, TX 1,000 $157M
ADP Norfolk, VA 1,800 $32.3M
CIOX Health Phoenix, AZ 2,820 $15M
Lucid Motors Casa Grande, AZ 2,213 $735M
Raytheon Missile Systems Tucson, AZ 1,975 $352.3M
ADP Tempe, AZ 1,500 $33.8M
Oscar Tempe, AZ 1,250 $5M
Wells Fargo Chandler, AZ 1,200 $25M
Farmers Insurance Phoenix, AZ 1,188 $41.3M
Snapchat Venice Beach, CA 1,194 $32M
Google, Inc. Boulder, CO 1,000 $150M
ADP, LLC Maitland, FL 1,600 $28.4M
NCR Atlanta, GA 1,800 $145M
Anthem Atlanta, GA 1,800 $20M
UPS Atlanta, GA 1,250 $400M
Home Chef Dekalb, GA 1,200 $3.4M
Sentury Tire Troup, GA 1,000 $150M
Rivian Automotive Normal, IL 1,000 $175M
* See e-Commerce Projects of the Year chart for other
large job-creating projects.
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2017 Gold & Silver Shovel Awards: E-Commerce* Projects Of The Year (2016)

Project Location Jobs Investment
Amazon Aurora, CO 250 $27M
Amazon Jacksonville, FL 1,500 $198M
Amazon Jackson County, GA 500 N/A**
Amazon Edwardsville,
Joliet, IL
4,500 $355M
Amazon Edgerton & Kansas City 2,000 $292.6M
Amazon Livonia, MI 1,000 $90M
Amazon Shakopee, MN 1,000 $250M
Amazon North Las Vegas, NV 1,000 $18M
Amazon Carteret & Florence, NJ 2,000 N/A**
Amazon Charlotte, NC 1,500 $50M
Amazon Palmer & Pittston, PA 850 N/A**
Amazon Houston, TX 1,000 $136M
* Projects represent Amazon fulfillment centers
**Investment confidential
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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 2016 (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 were awarded Area Development’s 2017 Gold Shovels in five population categories: 12+ million, 8+ to 12 million, 5+ to 8 million, 3+ to 5 million, and fewer than 3 million. Runners-up in each of these population categories were awarded 2017 Silver Shovels.

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