Local Economic Development Contacts
Toll Free: +1.877.725.0949
120 South Central Avenue, Suite 1535
Saint Louis, MO 63105
12200 NW Ambassador Drive, Suite 234
Kansas City, MO 64163
Missouri's Southwest Region
The Southwest region is made up of seven counties, and contains Joplin, the region’s largest city. Historic attractions in the area include the George Washington Carver National Monument and Harry S. Truman’s birthplace. Major industries in the region include Information Technology, Manufacturing, and Warehousing/ Distribution. Major companies including La-Z-Boy, General Mills, and Jack Henry & Associates have operations in the Southwest.
Recent Investment Projects
May 2013: Express Scripts announced plans to locate a new patient-service call center in Joplin, an expansion that is expected to create 100 new local jobs. The new call center represents a capital investment of $960,000 into the local economy.
April 2013: AT&T announced plans to add 48 new positions at their Joplin call center.
December 2012: Innovative Objects CEO Russ Grundy announced plans for a new, $5 million central headquarters for his three subsidiary companies - PILR, Audio Input and Wyerless. Grundy said the expansion will allow the three companies - which currently have separate locations to each double the sizes of their staffs within the next two years. Innovative Objects, through its subsidiaries, currently employs 25. Grundy said the new building will allow space for another 25-30 employees, most of whom would fill IT and technical positions.
Having hired nearly 50 employees during the months of October and November, AT&T has pledged to add another 48 employees to its Joplin call center in the coming months.
October 2012: Blue Buffalo, one of the country’s largest independent pet-food companies, broke ground in Joplin on a new manufacturing and distribution center, an investment that is expected to create up to 150 new local manufacturing jobs.
Don's Cold Storage, an Arkansas-based company that provides temperature-controlled warehouse and transportation services to a variety of industries, announced plans to construct a new cold storage and distribution center in Joplin, a capital investment of $14 million that is expected to create 52 new local jobs.
August 2012: Schaeffler Group USA announced it would make a $41.1 million capital investment in its Joplin facility.
July 2012: Coca-Cola broke ground on a new $5.5 million distribution center. The 56,000-square-foot center will open in early 2013. The center's work force will grow from 55 to 100 employees through consolidation of company operations.
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||Civilian Labor Force (July 2012)
||Employment (July 2012)
||Unemployment (July 2012)
||Unemployment Rate (July 2012)
|Southwest Region Summary
Sources: MERIC and Missouri Office of Administration
The regional average wage was $652 per week in the 1st Quarter of 2012.
Major roads in the region include I-44, US-60, US-71 and US-160. I-44 provides access to St. Louis, Springfield, and Oklahoma City. US-60 links Virginia to Arizona, with major junctions at Richmond, Lexington, Louisville, and Phoenix.
US-71 currently extends from the Canadian border all the way to Shreveport; a large section of the highway from Missouri south is currently being upgraded to interstate standards as a potential extension of I-49. US-160 begins in Missouri and terminates in Arizona.
Commercial air service for the region is provided by Joplin Regional Airport.
Burlington Northern Santa Fe and Kansas City Southern provide Class I rail service to the region.
Joplin (Pop: 50,559)
Webb City (11,095)
Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2011
Higher Education Institutions:
Crowder College: (Neosho) 2-year, public
Missouri Southern State University: (Joplin) 4-year, public
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|Southwest Region Summary
Source: U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey, 5 year estimates, 2010
Missouri Alternative and Renewable Energy Tech (MARET) Center at Crowder College
: The mission of the MARET Center is to expand renewable energy throughout the region with education, applied research, and economic development. Educational programs include certification and transfer degrees encompassing green construction, solar thermal energy, solar electricity, wind, and bio fuels. The MARET Center also assists in new product development and other business support services in renewable energy.