Executives from Bridgestone Metalpha, the steel cord division of the global tire giant, gathered with Montgomery County officials this week in Clarksville to break ground on a 123,000-square-foot expansion that's been in the works for a while. Bridgestone officials announced their plans to grow in Clarksville in 2011 and began prepping the site early last year. The expansion will grow the plant’s capacity by 10 percent and add 47 jobs to the 420 people already there. Construction is expected to wrap up late next year.
From left: EDC President and CEO James Chavez, EDC Chairman Steve Kemmer, County Commissioner Charles Keene, County Mayor Carolyn Bowers, Clarksville Mayor Kim McMillan, Bridgestone Corp. Steel Cord Management Director Yuuji Mochizuki, Bridgestone Metalpha President Yoshi Yamada, EDC Board Member Jim Durrett, Plant Manager Donna Bright, Bridgestone Americas U.S. and Canada Commercial Tire Sales Division President Ken Weaver, State Sen. Mark Green, IDB Board Member Billy Atkins and IDB Executive Director Mike Evans
Maury County commissioners will next week vote on whether to chip in $400,000 to help build a $1.5 million speculative building in the 547-acre Cherry Glen Industrial Park along Highway 43 in Mt. Pleasant. Economic development officials say a number of companies are circling the area with expansion plans and argue a ready-to-go building will help them pull the trigger.
"The sooner we get this thing going, it goes back to the weapon in your arsenal," Mt. Pleasant Water System Derek Church this week told the commission's budget committee. "It gives Maury Alliance something to put the county ahead of other communities."
The team members at the Williamson County Office of Economic Development were at the end of 2012 chasing projects that could bring almost 10,000 jobs to the county. That number was down about 15 percent from three months before, as was the total square footage those companies were looking for. But given some of the seasonality involved, it's worth looking at year-ago numbers, too. Compared to the end of 2011, the total number of jobs in play was up 3 percent, and the space companies were looking for was 12 percent larger.
Nashville-based market research firm North Star has signed a $90,000 deal with Greenville officials to identify through a data-driven branding campaign ways to maximize full economic potential of the North Carolina city.
Greenville is home to East Carolina University. In 2012, Forbes Magazine placed the city on its "Best Small Places For Business And Careers” top 10 ranking. Don McEachern started North Star Destination Strategies in 2000.
Read more here.
Nashville-based economic consultancy E3 Ideation and Jefferson Street United Merchants Partnership have partnered to craft a survey targeting North Nashville businesses.
The survey will allow JUMP to identify multiple issues facing North Nashville-based businesses and to address them accordingly.
E3 Ideation, founded by Nashville-based entrepreneur Eddie Gray, will meet with the business owners and managers to explain and promote the survey.
Read more here.
The Nashville region is projected to be the 29th-fastest growing large metro area between now and 2017, according to the first-ever Metro Magnets report from Pitney Bowes Software. In the coming five years, Middle Tennessee is expected to add 33,479 households, a growth rate of 5.4 percent. That's the same as Atlanta's but well below a number of cities we consider our biggest ECD rivals. Austin's growth is projected to be 7.4 percent and Pitney Bowes expects Charlotte to grow its household base by 6.6 percent.
State economic development officials are changing the way they incentivize film-making in Tennessee. Blake Farmer has the details on the plan, which aims to help smaller, local film projects rather than compete with states that cut big checks for major productions.
Economic and Community Development Commissioner Bill Hagerty on Wednesday told a legislative committee that his team is devoting more resources to the oversight of the TNInvestco venture capital program. The beginnings of "a management structure" are being put in place to supplement the less than one FTE who had been tracking the TNInvestco paperwork.