February, 2010 Archives

Georgia Corporate Moves

Orcon Products Expands to Coffee County The Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD) has announced that Orcon Products, based in Union City, CA, is expanding to Douglas, GA in Coffee County. With this expansion, Orcon plans to create at least 50 direct jobs within the plant’s first 12 months of operation. “Manufacturing companies like Orcon Products represent a vital part of Georgia’s diverse economy,” said Ken Stewart, commissioner of the Georgia Department of Economic Development. “Georgia’s progressive business climate will benefit Orcon Products and foster continued economic growth for Coffee County.” Formed in 1962, Orcon Products manufactures seaming tape for aerospace and carpet applications. The company’s Douglas plant will primarily be tasked with manufacturing carpet seaming tape. This operation will locate in an existing 45,000-square-foot warehouse in Douglas, and will be ready for production by March 2010. Hiring is scheduled to begin by the end of February 2010. “The positive guidance and assistance that the Georgia Department of Economic Development and the Douglas-Coffee County Development Authority provided to Orcon Products during its search for a location for a new manufacturing site were deciding factors in Orcon Products selection of Douglas-Coffee County,” said Hollis Bascom, Orcon Corporation founder, president and CEO. “It’s always a pleasure to work with professionals.” In addition to Coffee County’s pro-business climate, Orcon Products will also leverage the benefit of a well-trained workforce through collaboration with Quick Start, Georgia’s strategic workforce training solution. Quick Start’s five regional offices mean that no matter where in Georgia a company chooses to locate, a Quick Start team of experts is available to provide training services. “It is always a great feeling to bring new jobs to Coffee County and Georgia,” said JoAnne Lewis, Executive Director of the Douglas-Coffee County Development Authority.  “With more than 40 years of success, Orcon is a great example of entrepreneurship. The doors of our community are open to job growth and we are proud to have Orcon as a partner.” U.K.-Based Metal Products Facility Set for Liberty County Gov. Sonny Perdue has announced the expansion of Firth Rixson Limited, a United Kingdom-based provider of highly engineered forged metal products, to Midway in Liberty County. The 200,000-square-foot facility will serve as a closed die forging operation providing components for the aerospace industry. Once fully operational, the company’s Georgia facility will create at least 200 local jobs. “The aerospace sector is a targeted industry for Georgia,” said Gov. Perdue. “With the opening of its new operation in Liberty County, Firth Rixson Limited strengthens our leadership position in […]



60 Seconds with with Paul G. Risser, Ph.D. Executive Director EDGE Fund Policy Board

60 Seconds with with Paul G. Risser, Ph.D. Executive Director EDGE Fund Policy Board

Oklahoma Gov. Brad Henry has a proposed a $1-billion endowment for the Economic Development Generating Excellence (EDGE) program. Dr. Paul Risser explains how the fund will create research projects that attract jobs. BF: EDGE has focused investments in aerospace, agriculture, biotechnology, energy and weather science. Will the new funding include other initiatives? PR: In 2009 the EDGE program was expanded to include the following areas: aerospace, agriculture, biotechnology, energy, information technology, nanotechnology, sensors, and weather science.  Each year the EDGE Fund Policy Board reviews the focal areas for the upcoming funding competition and collectively chooses those areas in which Oklahoma has strong technical expertise and where there are commercial opportunities. BF: The governor has indicated that designated funding to the EDGE endowment will not begin flowing until the state’s budget crisis is over. Will this delay any commitments to specific projects? PR: The first round of funding was committed in 2008 to 5 initial companies, and in 2009 another 5 companies were added to the list of EDGE awardees. The funds available each year are the earnings from the EDGE endowment and thus these will continue to be available each year. BF: Have any of the projects initiated under the EDGE program produced tangible commercial applications? PR: Several of our projects have produced products available commercially.    OrthoCare creates high-technology prosthetics; last year, they successfully launched their Compas technology for sale and distribution, as well as announcing four new technologies available in September 2009.  There also have been successes in the creation of the SEAM Industries, bringing Oklahoma to the forefront of shape engineering in the MRO (Maintenance, Repair, and Overhaul) industry. Our wind energy project has created a software package that brings together key data for the establishment and operation of wind farms. BF: In the last round of EDGE projects, 94 pre-proposals were winnowed down to 18 proposals that were given a technical review, resulting in five projects. Are there any plans to expand or speed up the proposal review process? PR: The EDGE Policy Board distributed $10.5M in 2008 and $7.3M in 2009. The amount of funding available each year depends on the earnings from the EDGE endowment. As the EDGE endowment grows, more money will be available to fund projects. In 2009, five new projects were awarded funding through the EDGE program. Each year the pre-proposals and the proposals are extensively reviewed by a panel of Advisory Committee experts, the EDGE Policy Board, a team of technical reviewers and the EDGE Administrative staff. Because these are public […]