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Incentives may be part of doing business, but they must be done wisely and with transparency
"Incentives" can be a blessing or a curse word. Incentives create progress. But a critic would suggest it's a bank robbery that began with somebody emailing the bad guys the combination to the safe. Indeed, it's a word that should always flip on a caution light just as easily as it flips on the green light to get something moving. AL.com
Submitted 2 days ago

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Economist: Birmingham is probably going to lose money hosting the World Games, and that's OK
As a rule of thumb, University of Chicago Economics professor Allen Sanderson moves the decimal point of any economic impact study one space to the left. So the $250 million in economic impact that officials are touting when Birmingham hosts the World Games in 2021, that number's probably much closer to $25 million. But let's be generous, he says - let's assume that number is $50 million. AL.com
Submitted 2 days ago

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That's The Randle Report for January 22, 2015
Join us again tomorrow morning for all of the American South's business, economic development and political news in real time and in one place. Use the sort buttons or the search window above to find your favorite stories from yesterday, last week, last month or last year. Click on the headline to access Southern Business & Development magazine.
Submitted 3 days ago

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Report: NC, Volvo in talks on auto plant
Volvo is said to be looking at North Carolina – and any incentives it might get – for a plant as the Swedish car maker angles for a resurgence in the United States, according a report Wednesday in the British newspaper Financial Times. The publication cited two unnamed sources claiming knowledge of company plans to establish a new U.S. manufacturing site. It follows the appointment of a new American-market chief who would, according to the newspaper’s sources, oversee the facility’s opening as the company looks to recover from slipping U.S. sales. Volvo has talked with the legislatures of states including Kentucky, North Carolina and South Carolina about incentives that may be available for the project, the sources claimed. News & Observer
Submitted 3 days ago

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Volvo: Made in China, exported to the US
Volvo Cars announced at the ongoing Detroit auto show that its just-launched S60 Inscription will be the first made-in-China luxury brand shipped to the United States when exports begin in the second quarter. The Swedish brand acquired by Zhejiang Geely Holding Group in 2010 is also expanding its portfolio in the US market with the S60 Cross Country and all new seven-seat SUV XC90 R Design launched at the Detroit show. "These two new products, added to the all-new XC90 unveiled in LA, are a further statement of our commitment to turn around our performance in the US," said President and CEO of Volvo Cars Hakan Samuelsson. "Overall we will launch seven new products in the US by 2018." The China-made Volvo S60 Inscription is tailor-made for the US market, offering the driving experience American customers demand, according to news release from Volvo Cars China. China Daily
Submitted 3 days ago

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Volvo names new Americas chief in US factory drive
Volvo has appointed a new Americas chief as the Swedish carmaker seeks to make good on longstanding plans to open a factory in the US and turn round its performance in the world’s second-biggest car market. Lex Kerssemakers, the company’s product chief, will take over as senior vice-president of the Americas region with immediate effect as Volvo tries to arrest a rapid decline in the US. Under the ownership of Ford, the country was Volvo’s biggest market. But today the US accounts for just 12 per cent of sales after several years of underinvestment in the product line-up. Financial Times
Submitted 3 days ago

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Mercedes 'will lose talent' in move to Southern Auto Corridor
DETROIT -- Steve Cannon, CEO of Mercedes-Benz USA, says only about 40 percent of its 1,053 employees are likely to move when the U.S. headquarters moves from New Jersey to Atlanta, based on the experiences of other companies. Mercedes has made offers to the employees it wants to keep, and they have until April 15 to decide. Cannon would not give details on how many offers have been made. Mercedes-Benz will be leaving its home of more than 40 years in Montvale, N.J., and will build a new headquarters in Atlanta by 2017. Employees will begin to move from New Jersey this July into a temporary building about a mile away from the new site, Cannon said. "We will lose talent, and that is an unfortunate byproduct of a move like this. It will be painful for people who have helped our company," Cannon said. "For us, this is an important opportunity for the future." Automotive News. For more information about the automotive industry in the South, go to www.SouthernAutoCorridor.com.
Submitted 3 days ago

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Toyota breaks ground on new PlanoTexas HQ
Alba Reyes and Terri Von Lehmden made the move early. Both are considered Toyota "pioneers," and work for the project management office of the manufacturing giant. "It's different, but I think it's exciting, because it's a different place," Reyes said. "It's more of a neutral location for everyone to come together." Reyes made the move in August from New York, and Lehmden arrived with her husband and two kids from Ohio. "Of course it was met with a lot of excitement at first, and I think as people start to understand their individual and personal situations, everyone has to process it for themselves," said Lehmden, who is excited about the transition. The new headquarters — located in Plano, south of Highway 121 off of Headquarters Drive — will ultimately employ 4,000 people. Toyota North America CEO Jim Lentz hopes to retain most of his own. WFAA
Submitted 3 days ago

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Gov. Rick Perry's Economic Legacy
Governor Rick Perry was a one-man boon to Texas. Perry, a onetime Democrat who became governor when George W. Bush was elected president in 2000 … did more than any Texas governor in modern times — and maybe ever — to sell that model nationwide, staging raiding parties on California and other states and offering tens of millions of dollars in incentives to encourage businesses to relocate and do their hiring in Texas. - Mark Z. Barbak, Los Angeles Times Since January 2001, nearly a third of the private-sector jobs created nationwide have been in the Lone Star State, Barbak reports. "Our formula for success is simple," Perry told a chamber packed with Republicans who run the House and Senate. "Keep taxes low, implement smart regulations, provide an educated workforce and stop lawsuit abuse at the courthouse." Perry was unshaken in his belief in the state. Expansion Management
Submitted 3 days ago

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Chatham Co., N.C., megasite changing name, but not its focus
The developers behind the megasite straddling Chatham and Randolph counties are changing the name of their site, dropping both the Randolph and megasite monikers. Dianne Reid, president of Chatham County Economic Development, said the name of the 1,818-acre site, located west of Siler City between Old U.S. 421 and U.S. 64, will now be the Chatham-Siler City Advanced Manufacturing Site. It has previously been marketed as the Chatham-Randolph Megasite. The name change acknowledges Siler City's "enthusiasm" and involvement, including plans for water and sewer, Reid said. Triad Business Journal
Submitted 3 days ago

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Features & Opinion

 Top Ten Places in the South for Relocating California Companies

Just look around at what's happening in the aerospace industry in the American South. Aerospace is really making a move to become one of the region's top two industry sectors. It’s not there yet, but if large project counts are any indication, aerospace may soon challenge the petrochemicals sector as the second largest industry in the region. Never before has the aerospace industry been so important to the South's economy. Oh, what's the No. 1 industry sector in the South? Automotive is, of course. That industry hasn't been challenged much for 25 years in this region, or since we’ve been counting.

 

 Randle Report - Business News in the South

 FEATURE  
By Stacy Randle
Demographer Wendell Cox recently analyzed the largest gains in holders of bachelor's and post-graduate degrees between 2007 and 2012 in the 51 metro regions in the U.S. of 1 million residents or more. The results were published in Forbes magazine and the South dominated the ranking.
 

 Business News in the South - Randle Report

FEATURE     
This is our annual "Made in the South" issue and it's timely because there is a new player in the South's manufacturing universe. For almost two decades, economic developers and politicos in the South and the U.S. have been chasing Chinese projects with little or nothing to show. Want proof we've been chasing ghosts in China for years? Okay, go ahead and name a Chinese brand that's made in the South? Tick. . .tick. . .tick. Give up?
 
 Nashville Mayour Karl Dean
If you have ever seen one of my presentations, then you know about the word "reshoring" and how that phenomenon has lifted the spirits of even the most skeptical Southerners regarding the future of the region's economy. After all, in the last four decades, manufacturing has suffered a bloodletting never before seen in U.S. history. The biggest factor behind the slow and long meltdown that began in the 1990s was the herd mentality to offshore manufacturing capacity to cheaper locales, primarily by U.S.-owned companies.
 


 

 

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