Week of March 25, 2002
  Project Watch
Perhaps 600 Jobs Affected
Zurich Scudder Investments' retail mutual fund headquarters is headed for Chicago (pictured). But the number of relocated jobs remains unclear, as does the timing of the move, owing to Deutsche Bank AG's US$2.5 billion acquisition of Zurich Scudder.
Zurich Scudder Relocating
Retail Fund Business HQ
to Chicago from Boston

Zurich Scudder Investments' headquarters for its U.S. retail mutual fund business is headed to the Second City. The relocation to Chicago from Boston could involve 500 to 600 jobs, Zurich Scudder officials said.
        Exact numbers for total jobs, however, remain unclear, as does the timing of the move. Those specifics await the shakeout of Deutsche Bank AG's US$2.5 billion acquisition of Zurich Scudder, which should be finalized this summer.

Move Mirrors Business Evolution
Zurich Scudder's existing base in Chicago was one relocation rationale cited by company officials.
        That existing base symbolizes an evolution for the company's retail mutual fund business, which manages $115 billion in assets. And that evolution clearly pointed toward Chicago.
        Zurich Financial Services Group gained a major foothold in the Second City in 1996, when it bought Chicago-based Kemper Corp. Kemper was strong in the intermediary business, in which funds are sold through third parties such as banks or brokers. Over time, Scudder, too, moved away from direct sales and toward the intermediary industry.
        "Our intermediary business originated through Chicago," said Zurich Scudder spokeswoman Laura Trumble. "We're just reinforcing that by actually moving the headquarters to Chicago."

Post-Merger Cost Cuts Could
Impact Total Jobs Transferred
Zurich Scudder, company officials said, will retain a major presence in Boston, where it has 900 employees. The city will continue to be home to Zurich Scudder's institutional business, its high-net-worth individuals business and its retirement services business, along with various support operations, company officials said.
        The retail mutual fund headquarters relocation will affect employees in sales and marketing, portfolio management, and call center operations. Some of the affected employees will be offered transfers to Chicago, but some others will likely be laid off, company officials said.
        Deutsche Bank's initiative to cut costs will have a major impact on how many jobs ultimately move from Boston to Chicago. The Frankfurt, Germany-based institution has said that it would cut 1,500 jobs during 2002 as part of the Zurich Scudder acquisition.
        The work-force cutbacks and relocations should be completed before the end of 2002, company officials said.
        Zurich Scudder's principal Chicago office is located at 222 South Riverside Plaza. The company, however, hasn't yet decided whether the retail mutual fund group will relocate in that facility, Trumble said.

South Central Ky. Lands Kiriu's
'Most Strategic Overseas Operation in the World'

GM's Corvette plant, Bowling Green
Bowling Green, which landed Kiriu's auto brake rotors plant, is also home to GM's 1,050-employee Corvette plant (pictured), relocated from St. Louis in 1981.
After looking at more than 20 sites in three Southeast states, Kiriu USA Corp. has picked Bowling Green, Ky., for what the company's president calls its "most strategic overseas operation in the world."
        A subsidiary of Japan's second-largest producer of automotive brake rotors, Kiriu USA is building a 35,000-sq.-ft. (3,150-sq.-m.) facility in the South Central Kentucky Industrial Park.
        Kiriu picked that location after investigating sites in Georgia, Kentucky and Tennessee. Much of the plant's output will be headed for Nissan's plant in Smyrna, Tenn. Kiriu is an official Nissan supplier in the USA.

Location Rationale: 'Strategic
Location, Supportive Community'
"Bowling Green was selected . . . not only because of its strategic location for the automotive parts supplier, but also because of the very supportive community for new industry and further business development," said Kiriu President Toshio Nakagawa.
        "Kiriu was also attracted because of Western Kentucky University and the dynamic growth of Bowling Green," he continued. "Consequently, Kiriu is proud of selecting Bowling Green for its most strategic overseas operation in the world."
        When completed later this year, the Bowling Green plant will sit some 83 miles (133 kilometers) from Nissan's Smyrna plant. In 2003, Kiriu USA expects its Bowling Green plant to branch out, expanding delivery of its auto brake rotors to American brake suppliers.
        Kiriu should have no trouble in finding auto-sector players near its South Central Kentucky manufacturing operation. Sixty-two auto and truck plants are within next-day delivery distance from Bowling Green, which has a population of some 50,000 residents.

Anchorage, Alaska
With its population of 260,283, Anchorage is home to about half of all Alaska residents.
Best Buy Headed North to Alaska

Continuing to expand like the Energizer Bunny, Best Buy is making its first foray into Alaska. The Minneapolis-based company has announced plans to open a 45,000-sq.-ft. (4,050-sq.-m.) store in Anchorage. The store, Best Buy's first American operation outside the continental U.S., will employ 125 workers.
        "Best Buy wants to bring the ultimate technology and entertainment shopping experience to Anchorage," said Pat Matre, Best Buy vice president of real estate.
        The No. 1 U.S. consumer electronics specialty retailer has picked an existing building in Anchorage's Dimond Center Mall. Best Buy's Alaskan store is scheduled to open in fall 2002, company officials said.
        The Anchorage operation is one of more than 60 new U.S. retail locations that Best Buy has said that it will open during 2002.
        Four of those new stores will be opening in Salt Lake City, the company has announced. All told, the four operations will employ 500 workers.
        The quartet of stores will be Best Buy's first operations in Utah. The company has already signed leases in the metro area for sites in South Salt Lake City and in the cities of Murray, Riverdale and Sandy. The four new Utah stores are all scheduled to open this summer.
        The new operations in Alaska and Utah will join Best Buy's network of more than 1,800 retail stores in the USA and in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.


©2002 Conway Data, Inc. All rights reserved. Data is from many sources and is not warranted to be accurate or current.