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OHIO
From Site Selection magazine, May 2022
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The ‘Rust Belt’ No More

Data centers and microchip plants are today’s economic drivers.

OHIO
Cincinnati  skyline, Getty Images
by MARK AREND
G

overnor Mike DeWine referring to Intel’s plan to build a $20 billion microchip plant near Columbus as “monumental news for Ohio” and “transformative for our state” is correct. It’s time to retire the “Rust Belt” moniker once and for all where the Buckeye State is concerned. This project announcement was covered thoroughly in the Site Visit department in the March issue of Site Selection, “The Rise of the Silicon Heartland.” But its significance bears repeating.

Three years from now, some 3,000 people will be working at the 1,000-acre New Albany site with many more at such supplier companies as Air Products, Applied Materials, LAM Research and Ultra Clean Technology that have announced plans to locate operations in the region. “Applied Materials looks forward to supporting Intel’s new mega-fab in Ohio and working together to build a robust semiconductor ecosystem in the Midwest,” said Gary Dickerson, president and CEO, Applied Materials, at the time Intel announced its Ohio plans. “In addition to our decades of technology collaboration, Applied and Intel have a mutual interest in strengthening semiconductor manufacturing in the U.S. through efforts like the CHIPS Act, which will help rebalance global silicon capacity and create a more resilient supply chain.”

The ‘Three Cs’ Place in Key Rankings

ohio-sidebar-1Cincinnati, Columbus and Cleveland appear in a ranking by Real Estate Witch, an online consumer real estate platform, of the 50 best cities in which to start a business. The Ohio metros rank 28th, 30th and 31st respectively. The ranking is based on a weighted index of nine criteria:

  • 3x: Business applications per 100,000 people in the last five years
  • 3x: Employment growth in the last 12 months
  • 2x: Average annual income
  • 2x: LLC filing fees
  • 2x: Incorporation filing fees
  • 2x: Corporate tax rate
  • 2x: Chief executives per 1,000 people
  • 1x: Google Trends data
  • 1x: Patents filed per 1,000 people in the last five years

Data sources include: U.S. Census Bureau, Bureau of Economic Analysis, Bureau of Labor Statistics, UpCounsel, Google Trends, U.S. Patent Office, and the American Legislative Exchange Council Center for State Fiscal Reform.

The same cities appear in Lending Tree’s recent survey of the top metros for millennial homebuyers, but in a different order. Columbus ranks 11th, Cleveland 28th and Cincinnati 32nd. The ranking, based on Lending Tree user data, factors in these components:

  • Share of mortgages offered to millennials
  • Average millennial age
  • Average credit score among millennials
  • Average down payment amount among millennials.

Intel’s announcement to build its latest manufacturing facility in Ohio is an exciting step forward for the U.S. semiconductor industry.”

­— Tim Archer, President and CEO, Lam Research

“Intel’s announcement to build its latest manufacturing facility in Ohio is an exciting step forward for the U.S. semiconductor industry,” noted Tim Archer, president and CEO, Lam Research. “Ohio offers access to a diverse workforce, robust infrastructure and a great education system, and we are committed to growing our own capabilities in the region to support Intel’s success.”

Ohio-bottom

A rendering of Intel’s planned $20 billion chip facility in Licking County. Construction will begin later this year.

Image courtesy of Intel

New Albany is also where Google is investing $1 billion to expand its $600 million data center. And Meta also has a $1 billion data center in the Columbus suburb. Amazon, too, has a major data center presence in town.

A semiconductor factory is not like other factories. Building this semiconductor mega-site is akin to building a small city, which brings forth a vibrant community of supporting services and suppliers.”

— Keyvan Esfarjani, Intel Senior Vice President of Manufacturing, Supply Chain and Operations, discussing Intel’s planned $20 billion chip plant in New Albany

“The impact of this mega-site investment will be profound,” said Keyvan Esfarjani, Intel senior vice president of Manufacturing, Supply Chain and Operations, announcing the new fab. “A semiconductor factory is not like other factories. Building this semiconductor mega-site is akin to building a small city, which brings forth a vibrant community of supporting services and suppliers. Ohio is an ideal location for Intel’s U.S. expansion because of its access to top talent, robust existing infrastructure, and long history as a manufacturing powerhouse.”

Vital Talent Statistics

Speaking of top talent, how does Ohio stack up in its supply of tech workers to staff Intel’s operation and the many others in the state that require such talent? The state supports nearly 146,000 tech industry jobs and more than 168,000 tech occupation jobs for a net tech employment of nearly 263,000, according to the State of the Tech Workforce | Cyberstates 2022 report issued in March by the Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA). Other Ohio tech stats from the report:

  • 4.6% Net tech employment as a percentage of overall employment
  • $29.4 billion Estimated direct impact of the tech sector
  • 4.6% Economic impact as a percentage of overall
  • 15,700 Tech business establishments
  • 100,295 2021 tech occupation job postings
  • 24.9% Emerging tech employer job postings as a percentage of total.

Investments Large and Small Add to Ohio’s Project Totals

Ohio-sidebar-2Amazon plans to build a new 1-million-sq.-ft. fulfillment center in Canton that will create 1,000 new jobs. Amazon has invested just over $12 billion in Ohio from 2010 until 2020 while creating more than 41,000 jobs in the state. In the Northeast Ohio Region, Amazon has created more than 5,000 new jobs and has invested more than $3 billion since 2010, establishing multi-state fulfillment centers in North Randall, Euclid, and Akron.

Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) has selected Dayton as the location for two future aircraft maintenance repair and overhaul (MRO) facilities that will create approximately 150 new jobs in the Dayton region. “Following a nationwide search to find the location best suited to meet SNC’s growing customer needs, we are excited to continue our expansion in the large aircraft MRO field in Dayton and the Miami Valley,” said Mark Williams, SNC senior vice president strategy, in a release. “Dayton’s extensive supply chain, highly skilled workforce, and proven standing as a logistics hub make the Dayton International Airport our first choice to further strengthen the expertise and robust production infrastructure that have made SNC the go-to leader in large aircraft heavy maintenance, modification, and integration markets.”

Apogee Engineering LLC is investing $1.2 million to expand in Fairborn, Greene County, and plans to hire 150 additional personnel to support its work with its defense and civilian customers through 2025. Apogee provides defense and civilian customers with engineering & science, IT, software solutions, mission support, management, and cyber security services. Apogee, a private, minority-owned firm headquartered in Colorado with regional offices in Ohio, Florida, and Virginia, is looking to expand to a minimum of 20,000-sq.-ft. facility, including approximately 15,000 sq. ft. in Class-A office space, conference facilities and training space. An additional 5,000 sq. ft. in that space is to be dedicated to classified operational support that is up to the highest security levels.

Following are recent projects approved for assistance by the Ohio Tax Credit Authority that will result in capital investment and job creation in all corners of the Buckeye State. They illustrate the diversity of business sectors active in Ohio, and they contribute to Ohio’s strong performance in Site Selection’s annual Governors’ Cups ranking (2nd in total projects for 2021; 4th in total projects per capita). Information is courtesy of the Office of the Governor.

NORTHEAST

CertainTeed Ceilings Corporation, Strongsville (Cuyahoga Co.), expects to create 38 full-time positions, generating $2.6 million in new annual payroll and retaining $1.7 million in existing payroll as a result of the company’s expansion project in Strongsville. CertainTeed manufactures and distributes building materials for residential and commercial building applications. The TCA approved a 1.398%, seven-year Job Creation Tax Credit for this project.

Axuall Inc., Cleveland (Cuyahoga Co.), expects to create 75 full-time positions, generating $7 million in new annual payroll and retaining $1.3 million in existing payroll as a result of the company’s startup project in Cleveland. Axuall provides digital credentialing in health care, including proof about identity, qualifications, credentials, and experience. The TCA approved a 1.770%, eight-year Job Creation Tax Credit for this project.

Zin Technologies Inc., Middleburg Heights (Cuyahoga Co.), expects to create 125 full-time positions, generating $11.8 million in new annual payroll and retaining $17.4 million in existing payroll as a result of the company’s expansion project in Middleburg Heights. Zin Technologies provides advanced engineering services and product development for NASA, the Department of Defense, and private industry. The TCA approved a 1.913%, nine-year Job Creation Tax Credit for this project.

NORTHWEST

The Procter & Gamble Manufacturing Company (P&G), Bath Township (Allen Co.), expects to create 135 full-time positions, generating $10 million in new annual payroll and retaining $52.1 million in existing payroll as a result of the company’s expansion project in Bath Township. P&G is a consumer goods company specializing in a wide range of personal care and hygiene products. The TCA approved a 1.805%, nine-year Job Creation Tax Credit for this project.

Ice Industries Inc., Bowling Green (Wood Co.), expects to create 71 full-time positions, generating $3.8 million in new annual payroll as a result of the company’s expansion project in Bowling Green. Ice Industries provides stamping, fabrication, machining, welding, and assembly solutions. The TCA approved a 1.317%, seven-year Job Creation Tax Credit for this project.

WESTERN

Infinity Labs LLC, Dayton (Montgomery Co.), expects to create 160 full-time positions, generating $18 million in new annual payroll and retaining $2.2 million in existing payroll as a result of the company’s new project in Dayton. Infinity Labs centers on disruptive technologies, research and development (R&D), and delivering emerging capabilities to both industry and defense customers. The TCA approved a 2.028%, nine-year Job Creation Tax Credit for this project.

Loc Performance Products LLC, St. Marys (Auglaize Co.), expects to create 250 full-time positions, generating $13 million in new annual payroll and retaining $21.6 million in existing payroll as a result of the company’s acquisition project in St. Marys. Loc Performance Products provides mobility systems, vehicle hulls, armored cabs, and armor kits for military and industrial applications. The TCA approved a 1.715%, nine-year Job Creation Tax Credit for this project.

SEMCORP Manufacturing USA LLC, Sidney (Shelby Co.), expects to create 1,199 full-time positions, generating $73 million in new annual payroll as a result of the company’s new project in Sidney. SEMCORP manufactures separator film used within lithium-ion batteries. The company’s main focus is within the EV battery market with business also in consumer electronics and energy storage systems. The TCA approved a 2.095%, 15-year Job Creation Tax Credit for this project.

SOUTHWEST

Glidepath Holdings Inc., Cincinnati (Hamilton Co.), expects to create 150 full-time positions, generating $12.8 million in new annual payroll and retaining $76.7 million in existing payroll as a result of the company’s expansion project in Cincinnati. Glidepath provides customized solutions for asset growth with reduced exposure to loss. The TCA approved a 1.928%, nine-year Job Creation Tax Credit for this project.

CENTRAL

Behr Process Corporation, Heath (Licking Co.), expects to create 90 full-time positions, generating $4.4 million in new annual payroll as a result of the company’s new project in Heath. Behr supplies architectural paint and exterior wood care products to the U.S. and Canadian DIY markets. The TCA approved a 1.380%, seven-year Job Creation Tax Credit for this project.

Ortal USA Inc., Columbus (Franklin Co.), expects to create 24 full-time positions, generating $1.5 million in new annual payroll and retaining $400,000 in existing payroll as a result of the company’s new project in Columbus. Ortal USA provides modern fireplace design and installation. The TCA approved a 1.259%, six-year Job Creation Tax Credit for this project.

Orveon Global US LLC, Columbus (Franklin Co.), expects to create 150 full-time positions, generating $15 million in new annual payroll as a result of the company’s new project in Columbus. Orveon Global is a collective of premium beauty brands, primarily focused on cosmetic makeup, skin care, and fragrances. The TCA approved a 2.057%, 10-year Job Creation Tax Credit for this project.

Mark Arend
Editor in Chief of Site Selection magazine

Mark Arend

Mark Arend has been editor in chief of Site Selection magazine since 2001. Prior to joining the editorial staff in 1997, he worked for 10 years in New York City at Wall Street Computer Review, ABA Banking Journal and Global Investment Technology. Mark graduated from the University of Hartford (Conn.) in 1985 and lives near Atlanta, Georgia.

 



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