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:

Lockheed expands: Lockheed Martin's Pike County facility holds ribbon cutting for annex
August 13, 2015
Lockheed Martin's Pike County Operations celebrated the opening of its cruise missile annex Wednesday. The facility adds 62,000 square feet to the 92,000-square-foot Long Range Strike Systems cruise missile manufacturing facility.

Site Director David Anderson said the completion of the cruise missile annex would represent the "first fruits" of Lockheed Martin's partnership with the State of Alabama to promote long-term growth in Pike County. Earlier in the year, in conjunction with Gov. Robert Bentley's office, Lockheed's Pike County Operations facility committed to adding 240 jobs to its existing 370 jobs by 2020.

"So far in 2015, we have hired over 75 employees to fill high-tech positions at our Pike County facility, 20 of whom support cruise missile final assembly," Anderson said. "This growth is a result of new business our state partners helped us bring to Alabama."


51 Alabama businesses among America's 2015 fastest-growing private companies
on August 13, 2015 

Dozens of Alabama companies are in the spotlight this week after being featured in Inc. Magazine's 34th-annual Inc. 5000 ranking.

Huntsville led the state with 18 Inc. 5000 companies, followed closely behind by Birmingham, which has 15. The list is ranked according to percentage revenue growth comparing 2011 to 2014.

Each business had to be based in the U.S., privately-held, for-profit and independent without subsidiaries or divisions of other companies. Minimum revenue required was $100,000 in 2011 and $2 million in 2014.


One of America's largest sign-making companies is employee owned; It's also based in Alabama
ON AUGUST 12, 2015 

FOLEY, Ala. - Alabama has received a lot of attention the past few years for the incredible growth of its manufacturing sector; and rightfully so. The state has attracted car companies, defense contractors, and major airplane manufacturing plants all in the past decade.

But there are many companies that have been in the Yellowhammer State long before luxury automakers and state-of-the-art defense contractors came along. One of those companies is Vulcan, Inc.

Vulcan first started in 1966 out of Birmingham as Vulcan Signs and Stampings, with only two facilities purchased from another materials company in the city. Two years later, the company moved one facility out of Birmingham to Foley. By 1975, Vulcan moved all of its operations to the South Alabama town where it continues to operate today.


Kamtek unveils details of aggressive five-year Birmingham growth plan
By Michael Tomberlin
August 12, 2015

Kamtek officials went to the Birmingham City Council ostensibly to buy land for an $80 million plant with 120 new jobs - the kind of economic development announcement that would get any elected official's motor running.

Then, the automotive supplier kicked it into another gear.

Kamtek leaders said the new plant is only part of a larger five-year growth plan in which the company plans to invest $530 million and add 354 jobs between now and 2019 through multiple expansions in Birmingham's Valley East Industrial Park.

Jefferson County Commissioner David Carrington summed it up.


U.S. drivers want to treat themselves, and that's good news for one Alabama automaker
on August 13, 2015 

U.S. sales are climbing for luxury SUVs, a promising trend for Alabama's Mercedes-Benz auto plant.

The segment's popularity helped push July's total light vehicle sales above expectations, and the growth shows no signs of a slowdown.

One factor fueling the trend is the ease of financing more expensive vehicles, said Karl Brauer, senior analyst at Kelley Blue Book.


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