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Greetings!

 

Here is today's summary of economic development news, presented by the Economic Development Partnership of Alabama. 

 

in this issue:
ThyssenKrupp Steel USA chief to leave post - Press Register
Mercedes-Benz milestone: 1,500,000 vehicles made in Alabama - Birmingham News
Area Federal Reserve chief Lesley McClure says Southeast's economy shows signs of rebounding - Birmingham News
Tuscaloosa-based Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama names new CEO - Birmingham News

 


ThyssenKrupp Steel USA chief to leave post
Published: Friday, December 02, 2011, 2:10 PM     Updated: Friday, December 02, 2011, 2:36 PM
By Dan Murtaugh, Press-Register Press-Register
 

 

MOBILE, Alabama -- ThyssenKrupp Steel USA announced today that Chris Lackinger, the unit's president and chief executive officer since September 2009, will leave the position Jan. 1 to move elsewhere within ThyssenKrupp. 

A replacement has not been officially named.

Lackinger oversees ThyssenKrupp's carbon steel operation in the U.S., the centerpiece of which is a 1,750-worker carbon steel operation at the company's $5 billion facility in north Mobile County. The company also has a stainless steel operation there, which employs about 550. 

Lackinger has worked for ThyssenKrupp for 22 years. 

"Having been a part of the core team responsible for building this facility has been one of the greatest learning experiences of my life," Lackinger said in a written statement. "But the most rewarding has been building close personal relationships with hundreds of dedicated and talented people."

Earlier in the day, reports surfaced that ThyssenKrupp Steel Americas' chief executive officer Hans Fischer would leave the company. ThyssenKrupp Steel USA is under Steel Americas, but the stainless operation here is not.

 

 

  


 

 


 

 

Mercedes-Benz milestone: 1,500,000 vehicles made in Alabama
Published: Friday, December 02, 2011, 11:02 AM     Updated: Friday, December 02, 2011, 11:14 AM
By The Birmingham News The Birmingham News
BIRMINGHAM, Alabama -- Mercedes-Benz said today that its Alabama plant has produced its 1.5 millionth vehicle.

The automaker said the milestone vehicle produced at the Vance factory was a silver ML 350 SUV destined for a customer in Encino, Calif.

"We are extremely proud of this significant milestone," Markus Schaefer, CEO of the Alabama plant, said in a statement. "This year has been both challenging and rewarding for our team members, who live and work here in Alabama to help us achieve our goal of delivering superior products to our global customers."
 
The 2012 M-Class represents the third generation of a SUV that Mercedes-Benz says began the industry trend toward SUVs with a car-like ride.

The first M-Class rolled off the assembly line in Vance on Feb. 14, 1997. The plant employs 2,800 people, a figure that will rise to 4,200 as Mercedes invests another $2 billion in the operation and begins production of new models. 

 

 

more...

Birmingham News


 

 


Area Federal Reserve chief Lesley McClure says Southeast's economy shows signs of rebounding

Published: Friday, December 02, 2011, 6:15 AM
 

BIRMINGHAM, Alabama -- The Birmingham head of the Federal Reserve says the economic outlook for the Southeast is looking up, even though some business owners remain hesitant about the recovery's vigor.

Lesley McClure, vice president and regional executive for the Birmingham branch of the Federal Research Bank of Atlanta, said that most industries -- except for a few such as construction and commercial real estate -- are keeping steady or poised for a slight expansion.

The bottom line: The economic picture is not completely rosy, but things are looking up, she said in an interview Thursday.

McClure and her staff are responsible for collecting reports from Birmingham-area businesses and forwarding them to the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, one of 12 district offices for the Washington, D.C-based central bank. The business information eventually makes its way to the Fed's Open Market Committee, which regulates the money supply and sets key short-term interest rates.

"Emotionally, everyone's pretty hesitant," McClure said. "It's almost like they're saying, 'Things are pretty good but I don't want to say so.'"

One piece of good economic news this month could be surprisingly strong retail sales, said Michael Chriszt, assistant vice president in the research department for the Atlanta Fed, who was in Birmingham on Thursday. He said when researchers initially talked with retailers, expectations for holiday sales were modest, but results from the Thanksgiving holiday weekend reported by merchants have surpassed that. The National Retail Association, in fact, said sales jumped 16 percent during the period from the previous year.

In Alabama, McClure said Mobile has been buzzing with economic activity lately, especially with shipbuilding and exports.

 

more...

Birmingham News

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 
Tuscaloosa-based Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama names new CEO
Published: Friday, December 02, 2011, 3:01 PM     Updated: Friday, December 02, 2011, 3:37 PM
 By The Birmingham News The Birmingham News
BIRMINGHAM, Alabama -- The Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama has named Jim Page its new president and CEO.

Page, 33, will take the post on Jan. 1. He will succeed Terry Waters, who served as the Tuscaloosa-based chamber's executive director on an interim basis for the past year.

Page is now vice president for public policy and business development at the Decatur-Morgan County Chamber of Commerce, where he was responsible for government relations and public policy issues, as well the organization's business development efforts. Before that, he coordinated political campaigns, worked as a political consultant and assisted in lobbying efforts.

"Jim's leadership will provide a fresh energy and vision that will benefit not only our chamber but our entire community as well," Mark Sullivan of The Bank of Tuscaloosa, the chamber's chairman, said in a statement.  

 
 


 





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