Here is today's summary of economic development news, a free service of the Economic Development Partnership of Alabama, representing Alabama's private sector investment in economic development.  If you enjoy NewsFlash, thank an EDPA Partner.


In this issue:



Honda engine facility opens
Chris Shirley
April 17, 2015

Friday, April 17, the Honda Manufacturing Plant in Lincoln is opening its new engine facility. The new facility will assemble 1,500 V6 engines each day.

The plant will also employ 250 associates in two shifts. The expansion represents a $71 million investment by Honda in the state. Governor Robert Bentley is attending Friday's opening, which begins at 9 a.m. 

Honda Manufacturing of Alabama currently employs more than 4,000 people in east Alabama. 






Alabama's March Unemployment Rate Drops to 5.7%

MONTGOMERY - Governor Robert Bentley on Friday announced that Alabama's preliminary, seasonally adjusted March unemployment rate is 5.7%, down from February's rate of 5.8%, and well below March 2014's rate of 7.2%.


The last time Alabama's rate was 5.7% or lower was in July 2008.


"We continue to see decreases in Alabama's unemployment rate, and increases in both of our employment measures, which is a testament to the strong economic development efforts we have prioritized," Governor Robert Bentley said. "We have gone 16 months with no increase in our unemployment rate. This steady progress is further evidence that, as far as employment indicators go, Alabama has regained its pre-recession standing. My priority as Governor remains job creation, and I will continue my effort until every Alabamian who wants a job has the opportunity to have one."






Bayer CropScience poised to invest $120 million in Mobile co-location project with Evonik

on April 16, 2015 


More than two years after scouting the Mobile area to house the largest construction project in its history, Bayer CropScience appears poised to invest $120 million in the Port City's chemical corridor for a considerably smaller - but substantial - partnership with Evonik Corp.


Mobile's industrial development board approved Thursday tax abatements for the project totaling an estimated $15.2 million, including $8.8 million in sales and use taxes that expire when the project becomes operational and $7.4 million in ad valorem taxes extending 10 years.


Troy Wayman, the Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce's vice president of economic development, called the action indicative of the city's "pro-business approach to economic development" because it allows Bayer to "have a presence in the Mobile area and hopefully will lead to future growth for Bayer as it has for Evonik."






What's Apple co-founder's top requirement for an innovative company? Steve Wozniak tells Birmingham business leaders

on April 16, 2015

What's Apple Co-founder Steve Wozniak's top requirement in recruiting talent for innovative companies?


"You've got to be close to a University," Wozniak said.


Wozniak spoke at BBVA's ribbon cutting for the $13 million renovation of its Brock Center. Wonzniak said the smartest thing business leaders can do is have potential consumers in on high-level conversations.


Some of the most disruptive entrepreneurs in recent years - Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg - were college dropouts. And they were young when they started designing their products.







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