Coca-Cola Goes Collegiate in Kentucky

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Coca-Cola Enterprises announced yesterday it will locate its new Information Technology Development Center in Louisville, KY.

The company intends to recruit from the local collegiate base for the new IT and Business Information Services (BIS) Development Center. The project is expected to create approximately 35 new full-time jobs in the community. The BIS Development Center of Louisville will be an extension of IT services provided from the system’s Atlanta group, where Coca-Cola Enterprises is headquartered.

“Coca-Cola Enterprises’ new Information Technology Development Center will be a fantastic addition to Louisville’s business community,” said Gov. Beshear. “By recruiting local college students to fill highly skilled jobs, the company is providing an incentive for students seeking career employment to stay right here in the commonwealth.”

“Louisville is an optimal location for a Development Center as it is in the same time-zone as Atlanta and it has excellent technology credentials with IT professionals available from a pool of local universities,” said Michelle Bellamy, senior director of global development for Coca-Cola Enterprises.

The 5,600-square-foot BIS Development Center, set to go live in the first quarter of 2009, will extend the BIS mission and build in-house knowledge by reducing reliance on external contractors. It will focus on new development and top-end projects.

“We’re excited about this opportunity,” said Bellamy. “We’re creating a new diverse culture filled with fresh perspectives and a keen understanding of the latest technologies. This will allow us to be more innovative and proactive toward our business needs.”

In addition to full-time opportunities, the development center will have an active internship program for students during the summer months. Students’ academic skill sets will be matched with key functions within the development center, allowing for growth and better transition after graduation.

“These high-tech jobs, with one of world’s best know companies, are exactly the type of jobs we need and want in Louisville,” said Mayor Jerry Abramson. “Coca-Cola has a bright future in our city.”

“The ability to attract and retain critical technical and diverse talent is one of Coca-Cola Enterprises’ strategic priorities,” said Percy L. Wells, II, vice president of public affairs and communications, Coca-Cola Enterprises. “The expansion of our BIS system in Louisville demonstrates our commitment to creating a work environment conducive to professional development, growth and one that fosters creativity.”

The Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority preliminarily approved Coca-Cola Enterprises for tax benefits up to $730,000 under the Kentucky Jobs Development Act, an incentive program designed to increase technology and service-related employment in the commonwealth.

“We are thrilled Coca-Cola Enterprises has chosen Louisville for its Information Technology Development Center,” said Joe Reagan, president and CEO of Greater Louisville Inc.–The Metro Chamber of Commerce. “Our region has worked hard to develop a skilled workforce ready to attract and retain these kinds of new-economy jobs. We look forward to future opportunities for collaboration.”

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