Chicago home to more new/expanded corporate facilities than any other metro area
World Business Chicago was named one of the nation’s top economic development groups in the May issue of Site Selection magazine, considered the “industry scoreboard” for economic development. The distinction comes on the heels of Chicago being ranked “Top Metro” in the nation by Site Selection for having more new or expanded corporate facilities than any other metro area in 2014. WBC tracked 624 expansion projects accounting for more than 21,000 new jobs and $6.8 billion in investments in 2014.
Workforce, logistics infrastructure, proximity to the customer, and livability were common themes among this year’s “Top Group” contenders according to Site Selection. The magazine noted that companies want to locate in thriving cities that offer a wide range of options for life outside of the workplace.
“We are pleased that Site Selection once again recognized what companies continue to tell us – Chicago offers what businesses need to thrive,” said WBC President & CEO Jeff Malehorn. “Our city’s central location, diverse economy, vast talent pool and unmatched quality of life make Chicago a premier location for companies – both big and small – to expand and grow.”
The magazine noted three projects that impacted the city in 2014:
- Yelp; office expansion; $63 million; 300 jobs in 2014, an additional 100 jobs added in 2015
- Blue Cross Blue Shield; office expansion; 1,300 jobs
- Coyote Logistics; headquarters expansion; 500 jobs
“Chicago is an ideal location for Yelp to grow our business while delivering the best online and mobile resources to help small businesses thrive and to connect consumers with great local businesses,” Yelp co-founder and CEO Jeremy Stoppelman told the publication. “We are excited to be a part of the Chicago tech community and help create hundreds of new jobs in the city.”
Top U.S. economic development groups are based on four objective project criteria: jobs, capital investment, jobs per capita and investment per capita. Additional criteria include creativity of economic development strategy; scope of project activity; and ability to accurately document the link between the economic development office and results. See the complete list of the top 10 groups here.