From the September Issue


Room to Move

Using Site Selection’s Conway Projects Database, we explore how a congested supply chain plays out in project location trends.

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From the September Issue


Toast of the Town

The Pecan District brings major redevelopment to downtown Pflugerville.

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Graph courtesy of NACo

Looking to ferret out how federal recovery funds are being spent? Triangulating from multiple sources is a tried and true approach. First, there is a database maintained by the National Association of Counties (NACo) offering data from 255 county recovery plans (so far) detailing how they look to spend the $65.1 billion in State and Local Coronavirus Fiscal Recovery Fund monies that went to every county in the nation (more than 3,240 of them). The horizontal bar graph above displays results of NACo analysis of 200 of those plans.

As for the Paycheck Protection Program, all loan data is available at the U.S. Small Business Administration website for your viewing pleasure or consternation, as the case may be, with figures last updated on January 3. Check your storage space if you aim to download: The first spreadsheet of data on loans of more than $150,000 is 427 MB in size.

Last but not least comes a new paper from the National Bureau of Economic Research: “The $800 Billion Paycheck Protection Program: Where Did the Money Go and Why Did It Go There?” Among its findings about the massive spate of uncollateralized, low-interest loans, almost all of which will be forgiven: With 93% of small businesses ultimately receiving one or more loans, the PPP nearly saturated its market in just two months, say the authors. “We estimate that the program cumulatively preserved between 2 [million] and 3 million job-years of employment over 14 months at a cost of $170K to $257K per job-year retained,” they write. “These estimates imply that only 23[%] to 34% of PPP dollars went directly to workers who would otherwise have lost jobs; the balance flowed to business owners and shareholders, including creditors and suppliers of PPP-receiving firms. Program incidence was highly regressive, with about three-quarters of PPP funds accruing to the top quintile of households.”

One conclusion: “PPP’s breakneck scale-up, its high cost per job saved, and its regressive incidence have a common origin: PPP was essentially untargeted because the United States lacked the administrative infrastructure to do otherwise,” they write. “The more targeted pandemic business aid programs deployed by other high-income countries exemplify what is feasible with better administrative systems.” — Adam Bruns




Is America’s Workforce Ready for a Tsunami of Skilled Jobs?

Lumina Foundation President and CEO Jamie Merisotis and Kelly President and CEO Peter Quigley say we’ve reached “a critical juncture in the history of work in America.”

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From the September Issue


Turning Analytics into Action: The ‘Digital Journey’ of Novelis

From a session at the Georgia Tech Global Business Forum in November, we gained exclusive insights into the digitization of the manufacturing environment from Novelis EVP and CFO Devinder Ahuja, Novelis VP of Analytics Uma Haynes and SAS Institute’s Dan Abramson.

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Safe & Sound

Georgia cybersecurity assets secure national standing.

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From the September Issue


Atlanta: Southeast Tech Hub

Recent investments from such companies as Microsoft, Skynamo, TeamViewer, Google, Zillow Group, GreyOrange and FanDuel Group are growing Atlanta’s tech profile grown by leaps and bounds.

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An UNCTAD study released in December looks into the new Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) that went into effect on January 1. The Asia-Pacific trade agreement, which includes 15 East Asian and Pacific nations of different economic sizes and stages of development, creates a “new center of gravity” for global trade, says UNCTAD. RCEP eliminates 90% of tariffs among the countries in the bloc and is expected to boost intraregional exports by $42 billion. UNCTAD’s analysis shows Japan would benefit the most from RCEP tariff concessions. Site Selection published analysis of RCEP by our friends at Dezan Shira & Associates seven months prior to the UNCTAD report’s release.



New Zealand

As reported by The New Zealand Herald, Data Center Dynamics and other sources, Australia-based DCI Data Centers has decided to build a second data center in Auckland on a five-hectare (12.4-acre) site where it will invest more than US$400 million in a 40-MW facility. The company announced a 10-MW facility there in 2021. New Zealand is in the midst of a data center boom, as hyperscale operations from the likes of AWS, Microsoft and Canberra Data Centres move in and develop facilities. “With increasing use of cloud services, we are committed to a major investment program for cloud data infrastructure in New Zealand,” said Malcolm Roe, CDI’s CEO for Australia and New Zealand, says securing the second site is a significant milestone in the company’s investment in New Zealand. “These two investments by DCI will collectively bring over NZD $600 million to the Auckland region, with a combined economic value exceeding NZD $1.4 billion over the life of the projects. Each data center will create more than 150 jobs during construction and approximately 250 ongoing skilled information technology and telecommunications jobs once the sites are operational.”

Source: Conway Analytics


EY announced earlier this week it will launch its first Canadian-based EY Finance Center of Excellence in Calgary, beginning with a team of 50 new hires and expanding to 200 over the next three years. “Calgary is turning heads as a hub for talent and finance,” said EY Canada Calgary Office Managing Partner Alison Jackson. The company said Calgary was chosen based on its well-educated and diverse workforce, quality of life and Alberta’s affordable cost of living and doing business. Invest Alberta Corporation and Calgary Economic Development collaborated to support EY with its decision-making and planning process.

Source: Conway Analytics


Photo by Andrius Aleksandravičius courtesy of Visit Kaunas

On January 2022, Kaunas, Lithuania, officially became the European Capital of Culture 2022. “Long before the birth of our European Union, long before the formation of modern states, Europe was for centuries an extraordinary network of cities,” said European Council President Charles Michel at ceremonies in the city of 300,000, “cities whose cultural exchanges were as rich and vibrant as their commercial exchanges.”

Among other assets, Kaunas Free Economic Zone (FEZ), at 534 hectares (1,320 acres) is the largest free zone in Lithuania. The city also is known for Kaunas University of Technology (KTU), the largest source of qualified engineers in the country. According to Invest Lithuania, 36% of a pool of 50,000 students pursue studies in the engineering, manufacturing and construction fields.