2017: Pennsylvania Brings 8,488 Jobs and $963.9 Million In Investments
Pennsylvania hit the ground running in 2017, with ample economic development activity across the state. Last year, Pennsylvania saw a net gain of more than 78,000 jobs, a growth rate which outstripped all of our neighboring states. Since Governor Wolf entered office three years ago, the state has gained nearly 180,000 jobs — more than double the number for the same time period during the last two administrations.
With Shell’s ethane cracker under construction, a report on the opportunities for petrochemicals and plastics industry growth, and an Amazon HQ2 bid to cap off the year that resulted in two PA cities being shortlisted, the Keystone State continued to be a hub of development and tech focus at the end of 2017 — strongly supported by the hard work of Governor Wolf and the Governor’s Action Team. In 2017 alone, the Governor’s Action Team successfully completed projects for 77 companies who accepted $65,306,550 in financial assistance offers from the state and were locating or expanding business operations in the commonwealth. Collectively, these projects added 8,488 jobs and $963,931,678 of private investment to Pennsylvania’s economy and created positive impacts in a variety of industries and disciplines.
For over 30 years, the Governor’s Action Team has represented the governor and DCED in connecting companies with communities and critical resources to advance their plans. GAT economic development professionals engage with companies daily to help them meet these needs while moving their business plans forward. Read on for a snapshot of just a few of the Governor’s Action Team’s most impactful 2017 projects.
One of Pennsylvania’s most dynamic industries is its biotech sector, which boasts the third-largest employment and number of facilities in the United States. Last year, one life sciences company chose to continue growing in the state — its second expansion here in only four years. Eurofins Laboratories in Lancaster provides analytical testing services to the biopharma, food, environmental, and medical device industries. Last spring, they moved to substantially expand their current laboratory at their main campus in Lancaster County with the construction of a five-story, 168,000-square-foot facility. When complete, this expansion, which will house both laboratories and office space, will create 350 new full-time jobs while retaining its 1,500 existing positions.
You’re probably already familiar with at least one of the brands in VF Corporation’s portfolio. The global company behind Vans, North Face — and, most recently, Timberland — chose to return to its roots in Pennsylvania with an expansion into Lebanon County, taking advantage of Pennsylvania’s skilled workforce and convenient location to more quickly service its consumers in the Northeastern United States. VF will lease a 500,000-square-foot facility to serve as a distribution center for products in its Vans, The North Face, and Timberland brands. They also plan to invest up to $52 million into the project, pledging to create more than 175 new jobs over the next three years.
Pennsylvania is becoming a tech titan, with Pittsburgh being the most recent poster child for a city forging a burgeoning, modern tech scene from a blue collar, industrial past. It’s no surprise, therefore, that global enterprise software company SAP decided to expand its current Pennsylvania footprint with a new facility on the Steel City’s North Shore to accommodate future growth, improve operating efficiency, and attract talent.
Pittsburgh and other tech-oriented hubs, like Philadelphia and Erie, share key factors like research-oriented institutions, high-growth companies, and tech and creative startups in vibrant, amenity-rich residential and commercial environments, which are setting these metros apart in the tech landscape.
Additionally, SAP has committed to creating 392 new, full-time jobs statewide over the next three years — 242 jobs at the company’s Pittsburgh location and 150 jobs at its U.S. headquarters in Newtown Square, Delaware County, adding to its existing Pennsylvania-based workforce of 3,305 employees.
Large-scale projects like the ones mentioned above are often key to sustaining a healthy economy, and the coordination, communication, and tireless dedication demonstrated by the Governor’s Action Team make foundational development like this possible. Their efforts ensure that Pennsylvania is consistently able to offer a balanced approach to work and life that enables its communities and businesses to work smart and live happy. Driven by the success of 2017, the Governor’s Action Team looks forward to achieving great outcomes for 2018 and supporting new jobs and investment in all corners of Pennsylvania.
If you are interested in expanding or relocating your business in Pennsylvania, start the conversation with our Governor’s Action Team. Continue to stay up-to-date on all Pennsylvania company news by following us on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and sign up for our monthly e-newsletter.
As Executive Director of the Governor’s Action Team, Brent Vernon leads a dynamic team of economic development professionals who work on the front line of Pennsylvania’s business attraction and retention activities. Brent has more than 25 years of professional experience serving in state and federal economic and workforce development positions.