All projects start the same way – with a company need. Queries resulting from this need are generated several different ways, such as our marketing efforts, news coverage, a professional site selection consultant, or a previous business deal. However, the results are the same. A query, driven by a company’s data on what they need to expand, and a need for immediate responsiveness from everyone who receives it in order to provide that information within just a few days. Regardless of whether we helped the company identify the need, or if the company came to us, once that query is made, the Missouri team shifts into high gear.
Immediately, the project is entered into our system and is assigned a code name to allow coordination and cohesion at all levels. Requests for information are sent statewide to our regional economic development partners, utilities and railroads, who in turn distribute the requests for information to the local communities and counties. The responses, which are sometimes due only 2-3 days later, are consolidated by our team into one professional package and sent to the company or site selection consultants for review. It is this package, and the reaction to it, that determine if we really get to compete for this new investment into Missouri.
If any of our submitted locations meet enough of the project parameters, we will have the opportunity to fight hard for this new investment. Site and building parameters, workforce, infrastructure, possible incentives, regulations, raw materials, and much more are usually part of the scenario. Our team and our partners across the state collaborate to identify solutions for any and all issues that arise along the way. At this point in the project, every interaction with the company or consultants is long-distance or involves us traveling to them. We usually do not see them in Missouri for a site visit until they have eliminated a majority of their options nationwide.
The site visit, however, is where the community really gets their chance to shine. All the time and effort invested by the community in preparedness efforts, Insight Missouri, cooperative missions, web presence, data gathering, and more, all come together in this one moment. At this point, sometimes the company has revealed who they are, but sometimes their identity is still confidential. An expansion is always done for a competitive reason and keeping things quiet until it is time to meet with government officials or make an announcement is a valuable advantage companies count on when making expansion and investment decisions.
So now, the statewide team has provided a concierge service of sorts to the company, has answered all their questions, has come up with solutions for any challenges, has solved the workforce needs, has verified the validity of the project, has introduced them to leaders within the communities, and has given them numerous reasons to choose Missouri. At this point, we are usually competing with 1-2 other locations, and working to make Missouri their obvious location choice in order to have them invest in Missouri and create life-changing jobs for our residents.
Since 2009, we have led or supported the successful recruitment of projects that have resulted in almost 25,000 new jobs, nearly $2.8 billion in new capital investment, and more than $1.3 billion in new annual payroll.
See how Missouri’s business climate ranks in comparison to other states in the U.S.
Learn more about why Missouri is a top state for business expansion.