Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Economic Development

POSTED: Monday, April 22, 2013, 1:01 PM
Filed Under: Economic Development

Center City District president and CEO Paul R. Levy would like the city to set a goal of adding 50,000 to 100,000 jobs to its employment base by 2023.

The head of the special services district made the comment in presenting the organization's latest "State of Center City" report, which compares the downtown area of Philadelphia to the suburbs and other cities on a variety of measures.

Here is a link to the full report.

POSTED: Monday, March 11, 2013, 3:00 AM

I am no fan of economic-impact studies because, while written by third-party economists, they are usually paid for by organizations who want to tout the good they are doing in a community.

Still, I must admit to being intrigued by the latest impact study on the Pennsylvania Biotechnology Center, a nonprofit research group that has become home to many for-profit life-sciences start-ups.

Doylestown won’t make many lists of biotech hotbeds. But it’s where the center was started in 2006 in a shuttered manufacturing complex. Today, the parking lot bustles at rush hour with industry and academic scientists, students and entrepreneurs, according to Timothy Block, the microbiologist who has overseen the center’s growth.

POSTED: Monday, March 4, 2013, 6:06 PM
Filed Under: Economic Development
In this Tuesday, Dec. 11, 2012 photo taken in Walpole, Mass., an advertisement in the classified section of the Boston Herald newspaper calls attention to possible employment opportunities. The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits fell sharply for a fourth straight week, a sign that the job market may be improving. The Labor Department said Thursday, Dec. 13, 2012, that weekly applications for unemployment benefits fell 29,000 last week to a seasonally adjusted 343,000, the lowest in two months. It is the second-lowest total this year. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)

The end of the employment cliff for Pennsylvania is finally in sight, according to the economists at IHS Global Insight.

On Monday, the Lexington, Mass., firm issued its latest forecast of when states will return to “peak employment” levels. Peak employment refers to the level of employment attained by a state before a recession wreaks its job-killing havoc.

Pennsylvania is now expected to surpass its peak employment level next year during the first quarter, IHS Global Insight says. New Jersey has a bit longer to wait -- fourth quarter 2015. Delaware, meanwhile, remains two years away from a full recovery.

POSTED: Tuesday, February 26, 2013, 10:06 AM
Filed Under: Economic Development

Mayor Nutter makes his annual address to the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce at the Philadelphia Marriott Downtown Tuesday about 1 p.m.

It has tended to be a friendly forum for this mayor, who often encourages and sometimes cajoles the business community into doing more to hire, expand, offer internships, and mentor city residents.

Generally, the applause comes easily when Nutter describes his agenda, because the mayor has tended to champion a lot of things (lower wages and business taxes, property reassessment) that the business community has sought.

POSTED: Wednesday, December 19, 2012, 3:04 PM

One factoid that didn't make it into my column in Wednesday's newspaper on state subsidies to corporations, which focused on Delaware's $11.1 million incentive package to retain Incyte Corp., was the cost per job.

First, Delaware officials calculated the amount of state personal income tax the state would receive from a workforce of 560 from now until the end of 2018. That figure of $10,070,505 is the amount of the grant that Incyte received in exchange for creating 266 jobs.

To calculate what that works out per job, Delaware divided that dollar amount by 560 jobs, producing $17,983 per job. Why not the 266 jobs created, which would be $37,859? Because the deal calls for Incyte to have 560 employees in Delaware as of Dec. 31, 2018. If it does not, then there is a clawback provision that requires to company to pay back the state for every job under that level. That would be $17,983 per job.

POSTED: Wednesday, April 18, 2012, 6:50 PM

The Corbett administration has awarded $844,000 in incentives to help a Canadian company that makes catalytic converters for diesel vehicles relocate to Montgomeryville.

Environmental Solutions Worldwide Inc. will move its headquarters from Concord, Ontario, to a 40,220-square-foot building that its U.S. research and development and Air Testing Services units have been using since 2005. Last October, the company relocated all of its manufacturing operations from Canada to the Montgomeryville facility.

The Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development provided a $150,000 Opportunity Grant, a $500,000 low-interest loan from the Machinery and Equipment Loan Fund, and $194,000 in job-creation tax credits. In addition, the state said the company would be eligible to apply for R&D tax credits.

POSTED: Thursday, December 8, 2011, 12:35 PM
Filed Under: Economic Development

Anyone who has spent some time in the Philadelphia area knows that it has a big footprint in brainy activities that require spending on research and development.

But until now, it's been a little difficult to put an overall figure of just how much is spent on R&D in the region.

Select Greater Philadelphia estimates the amount at $10.5 billion, or 2.9 percent of Philadelphia's gross regional product.

POSTED: Tuesday, October 18, 2011, 12:12 PM

First, a corporate headquarters, then a small manufacturing operation.

That's what industrial equipment maker Gardner Denver Inc. has brought to Pennsylvania since late 2010. Gov. Corbett's office announced Monday that the company would add an "aftermarket service center" in Blair County in western Pennsylvania.

Gardner Denver, which makes compressors and pumps used in the oil and gas drilling business, is joining the rush of companies active in the Marcellus Shale region. The new 70,000-square-foot operation will manufacture fluid ends used in pressure pumps and provides service to its drilling customers in the shale area.

About this blog
Mike Armstrong blogs about Philadelphia corporations and business-related topics. Contact him at 215-854-2980. Reach Mike at

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