The past few editions of the blog have celebrated the successes of Lexington’s entrepreneurs and the city’s outstanding ecosystem in 2018. While 2018 was an incredible year for local innovators, it was also a fruitful year for Commerce Lexington’s business expansion and recruitment efforts, two other essential elements required for economic development. Commerce Lexington Economic Development is always working hard to attract new businesses to the region and help existing businesses expand. Whether it’s a small business adding a handful of jobs or a large enterprise relocating their headquarters, the economic development team labors tirelessly to meet companies’ needs, solve their problems, and assist in creating quality jobs.
Site Selection Magazine has tracked new and expanded corporate facilities by their location since 1988 in the Conway Projects Database. For an economic development project to be included in the database, the location or expansion must produce a significant impact. A significant impact is indicated by a project meeting at least one of three conditions: generation of at least $1 million in capital investment, creation of at least 20 direct jobs, or an addition of at least 20,000 sq. ft. to an existing facility’s floor area. Some examples of projects that are typically included are headquarters, manufacturing operations, research and development, and distribution operations. Schools, hospitals, government, and retail projects are not included in their database. In March, Lexington was recognized as the #9 Metro for New and Expanding Facilities with Population from 200,000 to 1 Million by Site Selection Magazine for 2018. Additionally, Kentucky also ranked as the #2 Top State by Projects Per Capita. These rankings testify to the allure Lexington has on businesses and of the advantages they receive once located in the city and state.
The Commerce Lexington Economic Development website contains a wealth of information on the Bluegrass Region’s industry, assets, workforce, rankings, and recent location and expansion announcements. The Recent Locations & Expansions page catalogs economic development announcements from projects the economic development team works on with clients. The list displays the diverse types of companies that Commerce Lexington engages, ranging from biotech companies like MosquitoMate Inc., maker of ZAP mosquitoes, to major manufacturers like Tiffany & Co. and Webasto Roof Systems. No matter their size, each company’s growth plays an important role in contributing to the overall health, diversity, and prosperity of the Bluegrass Region economy. In 2018, company expansions and new locations accounted for a total of $255,193,311 in capital investment and 1,838 new direct jobs.