Illinois Corporate Moves

Canadian Company Opens U.S. Headquarters

Imperial Manufacturing Group, a Canada-based maker of equipment for the heating, air conditioning, ventilation and building products industries, officially opened its new U.S. headquarters in Alton, IL last year in July. The facility has so far generated 86 jobs, with more expected in the future. The Illinois Opportunity Returns program made the move possible by granting a $655,000 business investment package to Imperial.

“The size of the new facility in Alton will help increase production and efficiency of sales as well as benefit the community with new job opportunities,” says Bradley Spencer, Imperial’s vice president, U.S. sales and operations.

Imperial Manufacturing Group currently occupies just over half of the 222,400-square-foot Alton Center II, with 5,000 square feet of office space, a 30,000-square-foot manufacturing area, and approximately 87,400 square feet of warehouse and distribution space. The Alton Center Business Park is a 150-acre, mixed-use development located at the foot of the Lewis and Clark Bridge at the intersection of Illinois Route 143 and Broadway. It was a 2001 Phoenix Award winner for Community Impact at the National Brownfield Conference.

Local Manufacturer Gets Big State Support

The state of Illinois is investing $560,000 in Fabritech Inc., an aerospace manufacturing and maintenance, repair and overhaul business that specializes in rotor-wing aircraft. The money will go toward expanding the company’s existing operations at the St. Louis Regional Airport in Bethalto, IL. The company, which is making an almost $1.7 million investment, will create 26 new full-time jobs within two years and retain 46 jobs. Governor Rod R. Blagojevich also announced the certification of a boundary expansion for the Riverbend Enterprise Zone to include Fabritech’s expansion; zone status will give the company income and job creation tax credits. This support comes as a part of Opportunity Returns, the governor’s comprehensive economic development strategy to continue create jobs and expand the economy of Southwest Illinois.

Fabritech, Inc. was incorporated in 1992 and currently operates a 25,000-square-foot facility at the St. Louis Regional Airport. The company’s expansion project calls for not only refurbishing and remodeling its existing facility, but also doubling the size of the facility. The expansion is expected to be completed by the end of 2008.

Chicago Keeps a Hot Company

In February, the Chicago Development Commission approved a plan by CareerBuilder, one of the highest-profile employment services and Internet media companies in the world, to keep and grow its corporate headquarters in Chicago. The plan includes the rehabilitation and reconstruction of office space in order to consolidate some of its 1,415 Chicago employees into a new headquarters building.

The state of Illinois has promised over $13 million in Economic Development for a Growing Economy (EDGE) program funding. The $11.6 million project will be supported with $2.9 million in Tax Increment Financing assistance.

The company’s renovated 150,000-square-foot headquarters building will initially house 800 employees. CareerBuilder, which employs 2,220 worldwide, will retain 615 positions at three other affiliate offices in Chicago which collectively account for another 105,000 square feet of office space. It will also add 185 jobs in the city over the next two years, for a estimated total Chicago payroll of $105 million by 2010. CareerBuilder had been considering relocating as many as 1,115 of its Chicago employees to Atlanta, GA or Phoenix, AZ.

Company Deepens Local Commitment

Last October, networking and electrical solutions company PANDUIT announced that it had contracted to purchase a site in Tinley Park, IL for its new corporate headquarters. The planned development includes a 250,000-square-foot facility in a campus environment, with initial employment exceeding 500 people. The 52-acre site, which is situated along Interstate 80, allows for future expansion to accommodate an additional 1,200 staff.

“PANDUIT is proud of our deep roots and history in Tinley Park and Illinois, and we are pleased to be announcing a commitment today that is critical to the future of the company and a reinforcement of our commitment to our headquarters’ staff and the local community,” said CEO John Caveney at the announcement ceremony. The new PANDUIT headquarter location is approximately four miles from its existing headquarters in Tinley Park.

“The Tinley Park location was identified after extensive evaluation of alternative sites,” added Caveney.

Bimmer Parts to Reach Midwest from Minooka

BMW of North America, LLC announced last October that it will expand its distribution network in the central United States by building a regional distribution center in Minooka, IL (part of suburban Chicago). The 306,000-square-foot facility will store nearly 75,000 BMW car and motorcycle parts, and will be located at ProLogis’ Internationale Centre South near the I-80 and I-55 interchange. More than 40 jobs will be created by the project.