Project wins are hard to come by in a global pandemic. The pipeline is full, but decisions seem to be just over the horizon. The good news is that companies continue to make plans for their near future. But it’s hard to choose a location for a significant investment when travel is restricted and Zoom can only take you so far. To me, it feels like we lost six months of 2020.
As we wrap up 2020, I wanted to take a few moments to reflect on a couple of key wins that align with specific industry sectors representing the very essence of St. Louis. All in, we notched nine project wins this year which will produce 1,845 new jobs, retain more than 400, and generate $130 million in new annual payroll.
Financial Services: Veterans United Home Loans, the nation’s number one VA lender, and ranked 17th among the Fortune 100 Best Companies to Work For in 2020, chose St. Louis for a corporate office that would employ 80. It’s our understanding they’ve well surpassed that threshold already, and will continue to grow beyond that in our market.
Aerospace: R&S Machining, founded in St. Louis in 1992 and a manufacturer of aerospace components specializing in 4 & 5 axis machining. Facing pressure to relocate to Kansas or Texas to shorten the supply chain, they instead doubled down in St. Louis and created 60 new highly skilled jobs.
Advanced Business Services: Accenture Federal Services selected St. Louis for their Advanced Technology Center which will create 1,400 new jobs over the next five years. This is the largest new business recruitment success in St. Louis for more than a decade and economic modeling suggests the overall impact will be closer to 2,800 direct, indirect and induced jobs total.
Transportation, Distribution and Logistics: Optimas Solutions is a global manufacturer and distributor of a new line of manufacturing for consumer products focusing on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and Maintenance, Repair and Operations (MRO). They’ve recently opened a 30,400 sq. ft. facility in St. Louis to handle the U.S. distribution of product, which will generate 20 new jobs for the region.
Great things are happening in St. Louis. The AllianceSTL team and I are grateful for the strong support from our board, our investors and our community partners. The strong collaboration throughout the region is making a difference. Cheers to seeing 2020 in the rearview mirror and to an even more successful 2021.