New Investment Map Developed as Key Business Attraction Tool

Destination Detroit recently released its Downtown Detroit Investment Map, a new tool for business attraction partners who travel the country and globe to tell Detroit’s comeback story to potential investors. The innovative tool tracks nearly all investments of $5 million or more in downtown Detroit that are planned, active or completed since 2006.

The map categorizes the more than 230 projects in nine areas including: arts/entertainment/retail, education, hotel, industrial, medical, office, park streetscape, public infrastructure and residential. In one central location, users can access the map as a resource to get full details of each project including: investment type of investment (new construction, renovation, expansion, etc.), status of project or completion date and location, and other contact information. View the map here.

Destination Detroit Collaborating on Major Business Attraction Effort for Amazon’s HQ2

The Detroit Regional Chamber is a key part of a broad and inclusive leadership group working under the chairmanship of Quicken Loans’ Dan Gilbert to prepare a world-class proposal for Amazon’s second headquarters.

Amazon’s search for a second headquarters has sent economic developers across North America into overdrive vying for this coveted project.

The Chamber will bring its expertise in economic development, business attraction, regional transit, talent and next-generation mobility as well as research capabilities to the coalition.

The coalition is off to a fast and strong start. Detroit has significant assets to be very competitive in this project and a first-rate team assembled. Read some of the regional coverage here.

Through Forward Detroit, More Than 900 Jobs, $179 Million Invested in Region During Past Year

Forward Detroit, the Detroit Regional Chamber’s economic development strategy, continues to play a key role impacting the Detroit region’s long-term growth by attracting major companies, increasing business investment and creating jobs.

From July 2016 through June 2017, the Chamber led the recruitment of 13 companies from across the globe to establish operations in the region. Executed in partnership with the Chamber’s coalition of regional economic development partners, these projects yielded a combined $179 million in capital investment and 957 new jobs, exceeding Forward Detroit’s annual goal.

Notable projects include:

In addition to the direct efforts of the Chamber, the regional economic development partnership of the 11 counties, city of Detroit, Consumers Energy and DTE Energy helped companies invest $4 billion in expansion and attraction projects and create 13,000 new jobs across the region in 2016.

“Economic development is a team sport. The investment and job creation we have seen over the past year is really a reflection of the dedicated work and collaboration of our public and private partners — organizations that are committed to the long-term growth of the Detroit region and ensuring the continued success of companies that choose to invest here,” said Justin Robinson, vice president of Business Attraction for the Detroit Regional Chamber.

The Chamber’s regional economic development partnership known as Destination Detroit includes: Genesee County, Lapeer County, Lenawee County, Livingston County, Macomb County, Monroe County, Oakland County, Shiawassee County, St. Clair County, Washtenaw County, Wayne County, the city of Detroit, Consumers Energy and DTE Energy. Destination Detroit is an initiative of Forward Detroit.

For more information on Forward Detroit, contact Marnita Hamilton at mhamilton@detroitchamber.com or 313.596.0310. To view a full list of investors and past Investor Exclusive content, visit our Investor Resources page.

Economic Development Outreach Yields More Than 900 Jobs, $179 Million Invested in Region During Past Year

Forward Detroit, the Detroit Regional Chamber’s economic development strategy, continues to play a key role in impacting Southeast Michigan’s long-term growth by attracting major companies to the region. Together with its economic development partners, the Chamber helped attract 13 companies from July 2016 through June 2017. The projects yielded a combined $179.25 million in capital investment and 957 jobs.

Some notable projects include:

• ArcelorMittal’s investment of $83.5 million expansion into Detroit
• Fuyao Automotive’s $66.3 million investment in a new facility in Plymouth
• VDL Steelweld’s $3 million investment in a North American headquarters in Oakland County
• Thanasi Foods’ $2.8 million investment in a Macomb Township facility

The success of these projects positively reflects the Chamber’s ongoing collaboration with 11 county partners, the city of Detroit, city of Novi, city of Southfield, Consumers Energy and DTE Energy through Destination Detroit, an initiative of Forward Detroit. Together, these partners focus on promoting the region’s assets with one unified voice to national and international companies looking to expand in the U.S. market. This work is made possible through the strategic partnerships and contributions of Forward Detroit’s investors.

Learn more about Forward Detroit’s initiatives here.

IAMC Spring Forum: Taking a Closer Look at Industrial Real Estate Trends

Last month, the Detroit Regional Chamber, in collaboration with the Michigan Economic Development Corp. (MEDC), represented our 11-county region at the Industrial Asset Management Council (IAMC) spring forum, “Industrial Real Estate in the 21st Century” in Tampa (pictured). IAMC is the leading association of industrial asset management and corporate real estate executives and site selection consultants in the United States.

The Chamber spent April 8-12 meeting with site selection consultants and real estate professionals to promote Michigan’s manufacturing and talent assets.

“What’s enticing to a lot of these site selectors working with clients in the manufacturing and automotive industries is our high concentration of engineering talent,” said Brian Bilger, senior business development representative for the Chamber. “Additionally we’re seeing a lot more positive word-of-mouth marketing about Detroit’s revitalization. Everyone is curious about the momentum surrounding self-driving cars taking place in Michigan.”

Both the opening of the American Center for Mobility in Ypsilanti next year and the state’s passage of the SAVE (Safe Autonomous Vehicles) Act give Michigan a leg up in the competition for talent and global investment, Bilger said.

“Attending events like IAMC are critical to putting Detroit and Michigan at the top of the list for site selectors,” he said. “Michigan has a lot of competition from Georgia, Tennessee, Ohio and Pennsylvania but when it comes down to it, the brainpower is here. The amount of engineering and IT students we have is a major advantage.”

The forum also helped shed insight on key issues and trends voiced by industrial real estate developers, such as a growing trend of big box store closures.

“What’s the impact on the community when these stores close? From an adaptive reuse perspective, do these empty buildings meet the needs of companies looking to expand? What types of incentives are available? These are all questions we have to get ahead of when site selectors come to us with a proposed project,” Bilger said.

Bilger said following the forum, the Chamber has remained in contact with site selectors representing companies from Chicago, Dallas, New Jersey and South Carolina that are exploring options in Michigan. Several are planning visits to Mcity in Ann Arbor and participating in the state’s familiarization tour in September, designed to build interest in Michigan’s manufacturing and industrial real estate market.

For more information on Forward Detroit, contact Marnita S. Harris at mharris@detroitchamber.com or 313.596.0310. To view a full list of investors and past Investor Exclusive content, visit our Investor Resources page.

Destination Detroit’s Economic Development Partners Attract $2.03 Billion, 3,271 New Jobs to Southeast Michigan in Third Quarter of 2016

DD_Social Media Numbers_3.28.17_webDuring the third quarter of 2016, Destination Detroit’s economic development partners directly assisted with the creation of 3,271 new jobs and $2.03 billion in new investment.

The bulk of the new investment during this time was generated by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA US), who in July revealed plans to spend $1.49 billion retooling its Sterling Heights Assembly Plant to accommodate production of the next-generation Ram 1500 pickup truck.

FCA’s announcement isn’t the only recent investment of $1 billion or more for Macomb County. In 2015, General Motors Co. made the decision to commit $1 billion into its historic Warren Technical Center and

Learn more about a few of the projects that helped drive economic growth in the Detroit region from July through September of 2016:

Quarter 3 Project Highlights

Company: FCA US LLC

Location: Sterling Heights

Partner Lead: Macomb County Department of Planning and Economic Development

New Jobs: 700

New Investment: $1.49 billion

Description: FCA will move production of its next-generation Ram 1500 pickup truck to the Sterling Heights Assembly Plant, committing $1.49 billion to modernize the facility. FCA’s decision, which is now the largest one-time corporate investment in the city of Sterling Height’s history, creates 700 new jobs and secures the future of a plant that had been previously listed for closure during the company’s 2009 bankruptcy. FCA chose Sterling Heights over a number of competing locations across North America.

Company: Fuyao Glass

Location: Plymouth

Partner Lead: Wayne County Department of Economic Development

New Jobs: 533 new jobs, 400 jobs retained

New Investment: $66 million

Description: Fuyao Glass, the world’s largest automotive glass manufacturer, will significantly expand its presence in the Detroit region, investing $66 million in a new logistics and factory facility in Plymouth. Fuyao originally entered the North American market in 2008 with an establishment in Oakland County’s Orion Township. The latest move will consolidate existing operations into one location, but add an additional 533 jobs for a new business unit that will finish the glass before shipping to automakers.

Company: iSource

Location: Flint

Partner Lead: Flint and Genesee Chamber of Commerce

New Jobs: 45 initial, up to 100 over the next two years

New Investment: $625,000

Description: iSource is a rapidly growing software company that developed a cloud-based web-to-print service. After reaching capacity at its Fenton headquarters, iSource made the decision to relocate to the recently renovated, historic Dryden Building in downtown Flint. The move will initially create 45 new jobs, with the possibility of reaching 100 total personnel over the next two years. The plans are part of the company’s larger vision to create a “tech town” in Flint and play a significant part of the city’s revitalization.

Company: Strongback Properties

Location: Adrian

Partner Lead: Lenawee Now

New Jobs: 0

New Investment: $4.35 million

Description: Strongback Properties is a Michigan-based real estate development firm founded by business partners Steve Hickman and Doug Kapnick. The company is currently renovating three historic, yet blighted buildings in downtown Adrian. Once completed, the project will add 17 new apartments as well as office and retail space to one of the city’s main corridors.

About Destination Detroit

Representing the 11 counties that make up Southeastern Michigan, Destination Detroit is a collaborative business attraction effort led by the Detroit Regional Chamber in partnership with the region’s principal economic development agencies. Each quarter, Destination Detroit aggregates and promotes the investment and job creation results for projects directly impacted by these organizations.

Tech Startup Lessons from Israel: Entrepreneurs Thrive with Collaboration, Government Support

A robust talent pipeline. Government support for startups. Strong academic and STEM education programs. No fear of failure. These are just a few of the key ingredients that contribute to Israel’s status as a top five global technology startup hub.

In an effort to better understand the Israeli ecosystem of innovation, the Detroit Regional Chamber recently attended a five-day, fact-finding mission to the country led by Deloitte and the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit. It was held concurrently during Gov. Rick Snyder’s Israel trip to enhance business ties with Michigan.

The delegation included chief information technology officers and executives from AT&TConsumers EnergyGeneral Motors, Henry Ford Health System, and nine additional organizations across the state.

During the week, the delegation met with key decision-makers from 12 leading technology startups and attended the 2017 CyberTech Conference in Tel Aviv to hear from cyber experts from multi-national corporations, startups, private and corporate investors, and venture capital firms. Gov. Snyder provided opening remarks at the Conference (pictured).

The group also met with Avi Hasson, Israel’s chief scientist, and received an up-close look at AT&T’s latest innovation center in Raanana, GM’s Advanced Technical Center in Tel Aviv, and Israel’s Startup Nation Central, a nonprofit focused on getting innovation in front of leading companies around the world.

Other stops included meetings with the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) Talpiot Program, an elite training program for students who excel in science and technology; and CYBERBIT, a global leader in cybersecurity and intelligence.

Building Relationships to Maintain Michigan’s Mobility Leadership

In sheer size comparison, Michigan is 11 times larger than the entire country of Israel. Despite that, estimates put Israel’s startup companies at nearly 1,000 in a given year.

Driving this entrepreneurial boom is a combination of Israel’s mandated military service and the resulting talent development, and robust seed funding from the government and venture capital firms for startups.

Public and private collaboration, along with a dedicated source of government funding, is an area where Detroit and Michigan can draw lessons.

“With more than 90,000 engineers, Detroit is also an innovation center with a similar ecosystem. But where our companies are built to drive innovation internally to meet the needs of their own customers, Israel is more externally focused,” said Justin Robinson, vice president of business attraction for the Chamber.

“The trick is, how do we take our innovation culture and flip it around to encourage more collaboration and information sharing, especially as we look to be a leader in solving issues around global mobility moving forward?” Robinson added.

He said one thing is clear:

“Israel is a market Michigan must have a close relationship with not only because of the volume, but also the quality of innovation taking place. They have a culture that asks partners, ‘bring us your problems’ – and there are no shortage of challenges in delivering autonomous driving to the world,” he said.

“The Chamber and MICHauto are committed to further enhancing the connections between our established automotive industry and venture capital community with the technology ecosystem in Israel. Doing so will be a win-win for both of our communities,” Robinson added.

For more information on Business Attraction, contact Justin Robinson at jrobinson@detroitchamber.com or 313.596.0352.

For more information on Forward Detroit, contact Marnita Hamilton at mhamilton@detroitchamber.com, or 313.596.0310. To view a full list of investors and past Investor Exclusive content, visit our Investor Resources page.

New Destination Detroit Video Showcases Regional Collaboration

Destination Detroit is North America’s premier regional business attraction team. The regional initiative brings together all the resources of one of America’s fastest growing locations. Learn more about Destination Detroit by watching the video below:

Led by the Detroit Regional Chamber, Destination Detroit is operated in partnership with the region’s principal economic development agencies:

Partners