Tennessee Valley Authority economic development programs ? including technical services, research and financial assistance ? helped stimulate $5.9 billion in business investments in the TVA service area in fiscal year 2012.
John Bradley, TVA senior vice president of Economic Development, said TVA’s efforts also helped attract or retain 48,000 jobs, bringing TVA’s economic development contributions to more than 300,000 new or retained jobs and $32 billion in business investment since 2005.
“Creating jobs, helping local communities, and improving quality of life in the Tennessee Valley is what TVA Economic Development is all about. We thank our many partners ? local power companies, industry, state and local officials, and others ? for helping make these programs so successful,” Mr. Bradley said.
In 2012, TVA’s economic development activities helped recruit or expand more than 150 companies and contributed to the following job totals and business investments for the TVA service area:
- Alabama : 7,800 jobs and $1.2 billion
- Kentucky: 4,800 jobs and $957 million
- Middle Tennessee: 11,700 jobs and $1.2 billion
- Mississippi: 5,100 jobs and $504 million
- Northeast Tennessee and Virginia: 6,300 jobs and $506 million
- Southeast Tennessee, Georgia and North Carolina: 4,450 jobs and $412 million
- West Tennessee: 8,400 jobs and $1.0 billion
TVA in 2012 won a Gold Award for its Megasites Program from the International Economic Development Council for excellence in economic development. Bill Adams, TVA Target Market specialist, conceived the idea of creating a “catalog of certified sites.” The program, which teams TVA with local partners to market large industrial tracts to manufacturers, remains one of TVA’s most successful economic development efforts.
Megasite tenants include Volkswagen, which opened a $1 billion Passat factory on a Megasite in Chattanooga in May 2011; and Toyota, which in 2007 selected a Megasite near Tupelo, Miss., for a plant to build Corollas. TVA’s two remaining megasites are near Hopkinsville, Ky., and Stanton, Tenn. For more information, on TVA’s Megasites program, visit http://www.TVAed.com/megasites.htm.
In September, TVA was named for the seventh straight year to Site Selection magazine’s list of the top 10 utilities in North America for economic development. The Site Selection rankings are based on a number of factors, including project activity, input from corporate end users and site consultants, website tools and data, and innovative programs and incentives for business.
Four new locations in the Valley region were identified in fiscal year 2012 for potential development under TVA’s program to attract data centers. The new locations are in Warren County, Tn. (two sites), Hopkinsville, Ky., and Cookeville, Tn., raising the total number of potential data center sites identified in the program to 22. For more information see www.TVAed.com/datacenters/.
TVA Economic Development staff and leadership also were honored in 2012. Bradley was named by Southern Business and Development magazine as one of the Top 10 economic developers in the South; TVA Business recruitment specialist Tim Tidwell was a co-recipient of the first Excellence in Economic Development Award from the Site Selectors Guild. TVA staff conducted dozens of Community Development workshops in 2012 to help communities identify economic opportunities and be more competitive. TVA staff also provided help with financial assistance through programs such as the Valley Investment Initiative, technical services, economic research, proposal writing, training and other services.
In addition, the Rural Development Strategy focuses on supporting economic development efforts in rural and economically distressed areas. The Retail Development assistance program also helps foster business growth for commercial businesses.
Business investments and expansions from companies participating in TVA Economic Development programs in 2012 include $53.7 million and 800 jobs by Magneti Marelli’s new automotive lighting production operation in Pulaski, Tenn.; $500 million and 200 jobs from Carpenter Technology Corporation to build a premium metals plant near Athens, Ala., in Limestone County; $8 million and 500 jobs from Agero, a global driver assistance services firm, in Clarksville, Tn.; $9.5 million and 207 jobs by Propulsys, a global manufacturer of hydraulic drive products, in Hopkinsville, Ky.; $130 million and 150 jobs from Roxul, Inc., a leader manufacturer of stone wool insulation products in Byhalia, Ms.; and $15 million and 150 jobs at Mann+Hummel an original equipment supplier to the international automotive and mechanical engineering industries, in Dunlap, Tn.