By the BF Staff
From the September/October 2017 Issue
A winning formula needs the right ingredients, and Mississippi has all of them. From a skilled and productive workforce to the state’s low corporate tax rate, Mississippi’s pro-business environment fosters growth and attracts new investment. State and local leaders work hand-in-hand with Mississippi’s corporate partners to create new career opportunities for generations.
Thanks to the state’s highly ranked one-stop permitting process, Continental Tire the Americas, LLC broke ground just 10 months after announcing the tire maker was locating in Hinds County, MS. This project by the world’s fourth-largest tire manufacturer netted the state a number of economic development awards and accolades. The plant will create an investment of $1.45 billion and 2,500 new jobs while significantly reinforcing Mississippi’s leadership position in the Southern Automotive Corridor. Mississippi also will become one of the top tire producing states in the U.S.
Earlier this year, Toyota announced plans to build a nearly $10-million visitor and interactive training center to showcase how nearly 2,000 Mississippians produce Corolla vehicles shipped the world over. The announcement celebrated the 10-year anniversary of the Japanese automaker locating a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Blue Springs, MS. The team members at the plant assembled 500,000 vehicles faster than any other Toyota plant in North America. The company is on track to produce its 1 millionth vehicle in late 2017.
Toyota Mississippi said that construction of the 15,000-square-foot visitor and interactive training center would begin in late 2018 with a targeted completion date in mid-2019.
Further south in the state, Calsonic Kansei has been a long-time supplier to Nissan, employing more than 500 team members at the automaker’s Canton plant. Because of Mississippi’s winning formula, the supplier announced a recent expansion to meet the growing demand for the company’s products. Calsonic Kansei expanded to a new facility within Madison County, representing an investment of $16.33 million creating 98 new jobs.
Calsonic Kansei is not the only automotive supplier in Mississippi needing more space due to increased demand. In August, S&A Industries, announced plans to expand in New Albany, MS, investing $4 million and creating 40 jobs.
S&A Industries supplies molded automotive ducting and noise vibration damping products to Toyota, GM and major Tier 1 automotive suppliers. The company is building a new 52,500-square-foot manufacturing facility in the Glendale Industrial Park. The move allows the company to merge its two existing New Albany facilities and accommodate new manufacturing operations. The new manufacturing operations will begin in 2018.
Mississippi continues to experience success in business recruitment and expansion because of the state’s business-friendly environment, including a Corporate Franchise Tax Phase Out and the Mississippi Works Fund. The Corporate Franchise Tax Phase Out eliminates corporate franchise tax over a 10-year period starting in 2018. The phase out reduces the current $2.50 tax for each $1,000 of capital by $.25 annually until compete phase out occurs in 2027 and an exemption on first $100,000 of capital beginning in 2018.
The Mississippi Works Fund allocates $50 million over 10 years towards strengthening the state’s workforce. The state’s top-ranked community college system can now enhance their customized training programs to more effectively meet the needs of companies and prepare more Mississippians for in-demand careers. Seventy-five percent of the funds may be used for new job creation, while 25 percent of the funds are allocated for strengthening the skills of Mississippi’s existing workforce and for workforce certification. The Mississippi Development Authority has the ability to direct funds as part of recruitment and expansion efforts.
These efforts join an extensive portfolio of existing state business incentives making Mississippi the right choice for global companies seeking to expand existing operations in the state or searching for a new location.
Mississippi companies are literally reaching for the stars thanks to the state’s thriving aerospace sector. Home to dozens of global aerospace leaders and the John C. Stennis Space Center, NASA’s largest rocket engine test facility, companies like Lockheed Martin, Rolls-Royce, Airbus Helicopters, Raytheon and many more continue to grow while the state leads the way in the next frontier of aviation—unmanned aerial systems.
Northrop Grumman, manufacturer of rotary and fixed-wing autonomous systems and manned platforms, announced it is adding a mix of new work to its Unmanned Systems facility in Jackson County. This includes sub-assembly work for the F-35 program, a $3.7-million investment and the creation of 60 jobs.
Another industry experiencing growth in Mississippi is agribusiness. Two state-of-the-art sawmills, Biewer Lumber and Winston Plywood and Veneer, are thriving within the state. Biewer opened an $85 million state-of-the-art facility in Newton County, which brings 125 new careers to the region. Winston Plywood and Veneer held a grand opening for the company’s new $100 million manufacturing facility in Louisville. At full capacity, the Winston Plywood and Veneer will employ 400 workers.
With strong incentives, a business-friendly environment, low operating costs, robust infrastructure and a skilled workforce, Mississippi has all the right ingredients for a winning formula of corporate growth and success.