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:

Airbus' Mobile grand opening makes Alabama workforce center of celebration
By Kelli M. Dugan
September 14, 2015

Likening the $600 million U.S. Manufacturing Facility to final assembly lines in Germany, France and China, Airbus Group Chief Executive Officer Tom Enders on Monday solidified the global aircraft manufacturer's commitment to Mobile and the North American market with four simple words.

"Mobile, Alabama, is home," Enders said on a stage overflowing with corporate and elected officials as he welcomed about 260 new hires to the Airbus fold of more than 55,000 employees worldwide.

"You are family," Enders said to thunderous applause inside the 210,000-square-foot hangar on the 116-acre campus in the Mobile Aeroplex at Brookley.


EDPA executives travel to Germany this week for Lead Generation Initiative

Birmingham, Ala, Sept. 15 -- Economic Development Partnership of Alabama executives are in Germany this week, where EDPA President Bill Taylor has been invited to speak to companies at conferences in three major cities.

The first conference is today in Munich. The conferences focus on key factors of importance to companies that are considering a North American location.

"We are talking to companies about how to achieve success in Alabama," Taylor said. "We want to make sure that prospective companies understand the advantages an Alabama location can offer. Our strategy is to help them understand that Alabama can offer unique resources to assist with successful startups."

Taylor, who is joined on the trip by EDPA Executive Vice President Steve Sewell, will also visit Stuttgart and Cologne. In addition, the two will meet with a number of targeted companies while abroad.

The trip, which ends Sept. 24, is part of EDPA's targeted "Lead Generation" process, an initiative to establish relationships with European companies and make a strong business case for the companies to locate in the southern U.S., especially automotive companies that supply multiple customers in the region.

"We want to paint the regional picture and then demonstrate the logistical and other advantages that Alabama offers," Taylor said.

This marks the third visit this year to Europe by EDPA.  To date, the trips have netted positive results both for companies that already announced projects and those currently considering Alabama.

EDPA will continue to visit European companies in the future as the organization proceeds with its Lead Generation Initiative.
EDPA President Bill Taylor speaks to companies today in Munich about advantages an Alabama location can offer

About the Economic Development Partnership of Alabama:
  Now in its 25th year, the non-profit Partnership represents the private sector's contribution to economic development in Alabama. Fully funded by more than 70 leading companies invested in the state's long-term economic success, EDPA provides leadership and services that aid efforts to recruit new businesses to the state, retain existing businesses and renew Alabama's economy by encouraging innovation both within existing industries and through the commercialization of new technologies.

Follow EDPA on Twiter and Subscribe to its YouTube Channel

Valley moving forward with plans to purchase property for new Industrial Park
VALLEY, AL (September 14, 2015) - On Monday, the Valley City Council authorized Mayor Leonard Riley to proceed with negotiations with IEP Valley LLC and WP Properties Lakeview LLC in regards to the purchase of 347 acres of land located behind the Carter/Lanier Mill facility off Exit 77 on Interstate-85.

With the approval of the council, the city can now enter into a 45-day due diligence agreement with the property owners to study the feasibility of a new industrial park located within the city limits of Valley.

The acquisition would be a significant move forward in providing opportunities to attract new industry and increasing employment in Valley and Chambers County. A recent study commissioned by the Chambers County Development Authority revealed that as many as 12,000 residents, or 60 percent of the county's workforce, out-commutes for employment.

For Mayor Riley, this purchase would provide an opportunity to make a significant impact on that statistic.

"When I was elected Mayor of Valley, one of my priorities was to create an industrial park within the city limits," Mayor Riley said. "I believe that an industrial park provides a unique opportunity to attract industry and high paying jobs back to our city so that citizens don't have to out-commute. It would be a return to the days when Valley citizens worked in Valley because industry was local."

Focusing on the importance of collaboration, the Mayor stated, "The City of Valley is working in close partnership with the Chambers County Development Authority in all aspects of this important economic venture to bring new industry and good-paying jobs to our citizens."

 "It's clear in working with the Mayor and Council that there is a distinct vision of where they want the city to be, and they are willing to give us the tools to do our job," says CCDA Executive Director Valerie Gray. "You cannot create jobs within your community without product, and with the potential addition of this new industrial park, we could have product that will allow us to be more competitive when companies are making decisions on where to locate."

The city and CCDA will now initiate environmental, cultural and infrastructure studies over the due diligence period to determine how to proceed with the land acquisition. Those studies are to be completed by October 29, at which time a decision will be made on whether or not to complete the purchase of the property.

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