Washington, DC (October 19, 2020) – The Economic Development Growth Engine for Memphis & Shelby County has been awarded an Excellence in Economic Development Gold Award from the International Economic Development Council for its Neighborhood Emergency Economic Development (NEED) Grant. The honor was presented late last week during the IEDC Annual Conference.
To date, EDGE has awarded $751,700 to the 134 businesses throughout Memphis's most vulnerable neighborhoods; 110 of those (82%) are minority- and women-owned businesses.
FY2020 will forever be defined by the COVID-19 pandemic, which occurred in the third and fourth quarters. EDGE created the Neighborhood Emergency Economic Development (NEED) Grant to provide relief to small neighborhood-serving businesses located in Memphis’ most vulnerable neighborhoods.
The year also saw big new investment in our community by Hyosung, the impact of an NBC television series filmed in Memphis and Shelby County, neighborhood revitalization and good-paying job growth through local company expansion and Inner City Economic Development (ICED) Loans, and the potential for significant community reinvestment with a newly created TIF.
Tattoo artist Peter Miller was looking for stability for his family when he decided to enroll in the Machinist training program at Moore tech.
Machinists operate heavy machinery to produce parts and tools from metal, plastic or other materials. There is a strong market for those skills in Memphis with medical device and advanced manufacturing companies like Smith+Nephew, Onix Medical, Eversana and more.
It’s not often that everything seems to fall into place, but when Janice Peete decided to enroll in training to get certified as a machinist, that is exactly what happened.
Machinists operate heavy machinery to produce parts and tools from metal, plastic or other materials. There is a strong market for those skills in Memphis with medical device and advanced manufacturing companies like Smith+Nephew, Onix Medical, Eversana and more.
Join the U.S. Department of Commerce for Discover Global Markets: Growth Opportunities in Intelligent Manufacturing
October 7-9, 2020
The US Department of Commerce’s Discover Global Markets forum helps companies identify emerging opportunities in foreign markets, obtain the tools necessary to succeed internationally, leverage government resources to compete successfully, and make key contacts with industry experts.
In all, 129 businesses have received much needed assistance in several Memphis neighborhoods. Areas that have received the most help so far include 30 businesses assisted in Midtown Memphis spread across the Medical District, Cooper-Young, Crosstown and Overton Square; 27 businesses in the Hickory Hill area; 16 in Whitehaven; 13 in Orange Mound; and 11 in Binghampton. Theseare also areas where EDGE has worked since 2014 through its Inner City Economic Development Loans to build up neighborhood businesses. To date, EDGE has awarded $721,700 to the 129 businesses throughout Memphis's most vulnerable neighborhoods; 105 of those (81%) are minority- and women-owned businesses.
Moore Tech Automotive provides students with the training and skills necessary to become successful auto technicians. It was born out of Memphis car dealers' efforts to raise $4 million and equip a school designed to combat the shortage of car mechanics in the region by training a new workforce. The project involved redeveloping a vacant and blighted former car dealership in Southeast Memphis to house the school. EDGE provided Moore Tech Automotive a 15-year Community Builder PILOT to help eliminate blight and get the program up and running.
The Tennessee Business Relief Program was initiated by Governor Bill Lee and the Financial Stimulus Accountability Group. It was created to provide relief payments to businesses that had to temporarily close or suffered a substantial reduction in taxable sales due to COVID-19. Administered by the Tennessee Department of Revenue, the program is designed to distribute approximately $300 million in relief payments to more than 40,000 eligible businesses.
A local entrepreneur is bringing a new salon to a Whitehaven neighborhood, helping to further its revitalization.
EDGE awarded James Cook a $16,000 ICED Loan to renovate the existing space and open Nubian Design at 1237 Marlin Road, just steps from other ICED Loan recipients Eggxactly Breakfast & Deli and Muggin’ Coffeehouse.
It was started in 2018 to help immigrant and refugee food entrepreneurs set up a food business with no upfront costs. Today, Global Café has become a popular spot for Memphis foodies. But just like so many other restaurants across the country, the COVID-19 pandemic has taken its toll. Today, Global Cafe received an $8,000 NEED Grant from EDGE.
EDGE PILOT Recipients Continue to Outperform Spending Commitments with Minority and Women Owned Businesses
From 2011-2019, EDGE PILOT recipients spent $426 million with minority/women/small local firms, exceeding their commitments by more than $110 million.
COVID-19's Impact on the Evolution of Online Sales: U.S. Chamber Reports Online Exceeding Pre-Pandemic Levels
Online sales exceeded their pre-pandemic high in July. As part of tracking retail sales’ recovery, it continues to be interesting to examine how the COVID-19 shock has affected the evolution of online sales. In July, in-store retail sales remained the vast majority of all retail sales at 84%. Non-store sales, which are mostly online sales, accounted for the remaining 16% of sales.
EDGE Assists Projects Set to Create 300 Jobs in Logistics and Transportation; Bring More Residential Living to U of M Area
Memphis, Tenn. (August 19, 2020) – Five projects approved today by EDGE would see three companies expanding in or relocating to Memphis, creating nearly 300 jobs and $161 million in investment for this area; and more investment and opportunities for population growth near the University of Memphis.
Gov. Lee Announces Expanded Small Business Relief; New Relief Programs for Agriculture, Tourism, and Workforce Development
The Tennessee Small Business Relief Program will expand to include additional industries adversely impacted by reductions in commercial activity in April, with $83.5 million added to the program’s initial $200 million allotment.
For National Podcast, EDGE President, Reid Dulberger Discusses COVID-19's Impact and How Memphis is Responding
On an episode of the Economic Development podcast by Blueprint Creative, EDGE President and CEO, Reid Dulberger discusses how COVID’s impact to the supply chain is driving the growth for the logistics and distribution sector in Memphis. Dulberger also shares how Memphis is preparing for whatever the international supply chains look like coming out of the pandemic; and how EDGE is supporting local businesses amid the crisis.
EDGE NEED Grant Provides Lifeline for Gym That, After Reopening, Struggles With the Effects of COVID-19
To date, EDGE has awarded $631,700 to 112 businesses throughout Memphis's most vulnerable neighborhoods; 92 of those (82%) are minority- and women-owned businesses.
An abandoned and blighted retail strip in the Vollintine-Evergreen neighborhood may soon have a new life. The 75-year-old building has sat vacant and vandalized for years.
Every September, the Southern Heritage Classic is one of the country’s most anticipated college football games. The rivalry between HBCUs (Historically Black Colleges and Universities) Jackson State and Tennessee State has become a cultural celebration that has a strong economic impact on this city year after year.
The impacts of the COVID-19 recession and the road to recovery can differ greatly across local economies. Brookings’ Metro Recovery Index presents data across a variety of indicators to provide a picture of the impact of the crisis and the trajectory of recent change, for both large and midsized U.S. metropolitan areas.
NADEC FREE WEBINAR -Turning to Exports: Small Business Export Resources During the COVID-19 Recovery
NADEC and NASBITE International will present a free webinar on July 30th at 2:00 ET to discuss programs and services that can assist your small business in obtaining export sales during the Covid-19 recovery phase.
The COVID-19 public health crisis, the downturn triggered by the pandemic, and government, business, and individual responses to the pandemic have all provoked the sharpest and fastest economic downturn in U.S. history.
To date, EDGE has awarded $533,500 to 96 businesses throughout Memphis's most vulnerable neighborhoods; 76 of those (79%) are minority- and women-owned businesses.
Memphis, Tenn. (July 9, 2020) – In the midst of a health crisis unrivaled in our lifetimes, Memphis and Shelby County still have momentum.
Via Area Development
With the easing of restrictions surrounding the Covid-19 outbreak, organizations are starting to bring employees back into the workplace. A successful re-entry program will ensure the safety of company personnel and the public and avoid actions that inadvertently violate federal, state, and local employment laws.
The Four Way is one of the most iconic restaurants in Memphis. The food has a place in Memphians’ hearts and the restaurant itself has an important place in this city’s history. To date, EDGE has awarded $496,500 to 88 businesses throughout Memphis's most vulnerable neighborhoods; 68 of those (77%) are minority and women-owned businesses.
To date, EDGE has awarded $437,500 to 78 businesses throughout Memphis's most vulnerable neighborhoods; 59 of those (76%) are minority and women-owned businesses.
"Local Production Companies Have Lost A Lot of Business..." EDGE Works With Film/TV Commission to Help Provide Relief to Businesses in Memphis' Rich Film Industry
To date, the Committee has awarded $377,500 to 67 businesses throughout Memphis's most vulnerable neighborhoods; 53 of those are minority and women-owned businesses.
Despite the more than 40 million unemployment filings and anticipated millions of small business closures that will result due to COVID-19, previous economic downturns suggest that there may soon be ripe opportunities for business start-up activity.
"We Have Had To Figure Out Ways To Survive..." Daycare Working to Serve The Community During COVID-19 Finds Relief Through NEED Grant
To date, EDGE has awarded $304,000 to 54 businesses throughout Memphis's most vulnerable neighborhoods
Jason Gardner has lived in Whitehaven his entire life. Last year, he opened Trap Fusion, a restaurant serving healthy southern cuisine, with Monique Williams, just blocks from where he lives. But before they could open the restaurant, the space needed nearly $22,000 in renovations. EDGE awarded Williams and Gardner a $14,500 loan to help fund the renovation.
"This Pandemic Has Affected Business In a Way We Never Imagined..." Several Music-Related Businesses Struggling Through the Pandemic Find Relief Through NEED Grants
Memphis, Tenn. (May 29, 2020) – Memphis is a creative city with a music scene known all over the world. But over the last two months, musicians and related businesses here have been hit hard by the COVID-19 shutdown. That is evident in EDGE's latest round of NEED Grant approvals. Three of the 12 applicants are music-related businesses.
Market research is critical to helping you narrow 195 countries down to a handful that represent the most promising export markets for your company. From determining your information needs and finding answers, to analyzing markets and crafting an entry strategy, The US Commercial Service has compiled resources to help you select your highest-potential export destinations.
"It's Hard To Do Business When Customers Are Fearful..." Eight More Businesses Struggling Through the Pandemic Find Relief Through NEED Grants
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (May 22, 2020) – Steven Dortch, the owner of Dortch Construction LLC is ready to get back into the swing of things. But ready or not, fear is still making doing business the way he used to almost impossible.
Southwest Workforce & Community Solutions is sharing FREE online, training and certification opportunities to uplift businesses and individuals during the COVID-19 pandemic.
EDGE Board Approves Amendment to Pandrol USA PILOT, as Company Looks to Invest More and Hire More People
Pandrol USA is moving its North American Headquarters to Memphis from New Jersey. The board approved a 15-year Community Builder PILOT last year to encourage the move. Today, the board approved an amendment to the company’s PILOT to reflect more jobs and more investment.
EDGE Aids Expansion, Job Creation at a 73-Year-Old Memphis Company, and Development of a Long Vacant Site Near Fairgrounds
At its May meeting, the EDGE Board of Directors aided expansion and job creation at a 73-year-old Memphis company, and development of a long vacant site near the Fairgrounds that will complement the city's redevelopment project there.
Join speakers from the U.S. Embassies in Abu Dhabi, Doha, Muscat and Kuwait City as they provide information for companies interested in strengthening relationships & increasing exports tin the Arabian Gulf.
Tuesday, June 2, 2020 10:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. ET Cost: $25 per participant per webinar.
In Its Third Grant Approval Meeting, EDGE Finance Committee Approves Funds for Three Businesses Affected by COVID-19
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (May 15, 2020) – Three more inner city small businesses received relief today in the form of NEED Grants. The EDGE Finance Committee approved $16,000 in grants for food distributor, Beneva Mayweather Foods, Daphne's Pet Grooming and Boarding, and the North Memphis barbershop, Uptown Cuts.
Earlier this week, the Tennessee Department of Revenue (DOR) released its highly anticipated state monthly tax collection report for April 2020. The business community and legislators have been anxiously awaiting this information to see precisely how bad economic activity has declined to impact state tax revenue collections. The April report reflects actual activity from March the prior month. April usually is one of the largest collection months for the state and is the 9th month of the state's fiscal year.
EDGE Economic Development Finance Committee "Keeps the Dream Alive" for 10 More Local Businesses Affected by COVID-19
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (May 8, 2020) – After weeks of uncertainty and fear, several Memphis businesses have some relief and a renewed spirit after they were approved for an EDGE NEED Grant.
Continuing Education Training Institute (CETI) brings together national leaders in continuing education with business experts to explore workforce trends that impact your students and your programs. The conference offers specialized training to enhance educational needs. Sessions offer real-time applications from education and business leaders representing leadership from community colleges, state colleges, adult education, universities, and national training partners.
Southwest Tennessee Community College is now offering free online courses. From now and until June 30, you can sign up for any of the courses listed below at no cost. The selections are focused on learning new skills that can help you grow your small business.
Memphis, TN (May 4, 2020) – A busy 2019 that saw more than $680 million in investment and an additional 1,700 jobs for our area, has earned the Economic Development Growth Engine for Memphis & Shelby County (EDGE) a 2020 Mac Conway Award for Excellence in Economic Development by Site Selection Magazine. The award is given annually to the nation’s top 20 economic development organizations.
The EDGE Economic Development Finance Committee approved grants ranging from $5,000 to $10,000 for the businesses at its virtual meeting Friday morning. In all, the committee provided more than $62,000 in funds to businesses that are spread throughout Memphis, from Orange Mound, to Whitehaven, to North Memphis. The range of businesses - a staffing company, a restaurant/bar, a distributor and a barber shop among others - shows just how far reaching this crisis has been for the local business community.
If you are a business owner, Governor Lee and his Economic Recovery Group need your input as they work to safely reopen Tennessee’s economy. They are eager to hear from all businesses about challenges you are experiencing and how state government can possibly help.
This Brookings brief recaps the state of racial and gender equity within business ownership, the challenges that minority- and women-owned business enterprises (MWBEs) faced during the depths of the Great Recession, and how the COVID-19 small business crisis could disproportionately affect MWBEs.
Mayor Strickland has extended the Safer at Home Executive Order for an additional two weeks through May 5th. In the extension, the City did include some additional conditions, as well as, lift some restrictions.
EDGE Protects Small Businesses and Aids Job Growth and Retention in Memphis' Inner City Neighborhoods
At its first completely virtual meeting, the EDGE Board
approved the Neighborhood Emergency Economic Development (NEED) Grant to provide relief to small inner city businesses affected by the COVID-19 outbreak, and worked to keep more than 100 jobs in one distressed Memphis neighborhood while creating job growth and investment in another.
Since 2014, EDGE has provided $1.5 million in loans for small businesses leading to nearly $7 million in investment for inner-city neighborhoods
Those loans have made a tremendous impact on the businesses and neighborhoods in terms of improving blight, revitalizing areas and inspiring more investment.
EDGE’s new Sewer Capacity management Incentive was created to help developers who were facing issues with sewage capacity in certain areas of the city. That was exactly the case for Arlington Properties in 2018, when they were looking to build a large apartment project near Shelby Farms.
As major U.S. companies seek to capitalize on international freight connectivity and industrial growth, many are zeroing in on Middle America over coastal gateway markets Millions of square feet of warehouses are under construction in Cincinnati, Fort Worth, Texas, and Memphis. What connects them? Airports with major cargo capabilities.
Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland has advised all Memphians to wear facial coverings when they are in public.
Brookings: COVID-19 is hitting the nation’s largest metros the hardest, making a “restart” of the economy more difficult
The coronavirus pandemic has forced America into a virtual lockdown, leading to severe economic impacts. Data on smartphone movement indicate that virtually all regions of the nation are practicing some degree of social distancing, resulting in less foot traffic and sales for businesses. And last week’s release of unemployment insurance claims confirms that every state is seeing a significant rise in layoffs.
The Greater Memphis Chamber today released the latest numbers from its ongoing COVID-19 Greater Memphis Business Impact Survey.
The economic impacts of COVID-19 are already shaping up to be significant, yet uneven, across the country. Yes, workers and businesses are affected, but so too is the fiscal capacity of governments that rely on a healthy economy for their revenue. As the crisis unfolds, the impact on cities’ bottom line will be driven not only by overall economic conditions but specifically the parts of the economy where revenue is generated: retail sales, income and wages, and real estate.
Carnell Vann grew up in Frayser and, as he puts it, has been in love with that community his entire life. He opened Vann Cut last year in a small shopping center near Watkins and I-40, located near several neighborhoods. The space needed more than $50,000 in renovations to build out the interior and improve the visibility of the exterior. EDGE awarded Vann a $20,000 Inner City Economic Development (ICED) Loan to help complete those renovations.
The Greater Memphis Chamber today released the latest numbers from its ongoing COVID-19 Greater Memphis Business Impact Survey.
The Economic Injury Disaster Loan is operated directly by the SBA.
The Economic Injury Disaster Loan provides working capital only.
Alabama, Georgia and Tennessee are eligible – border counties in neighboring states may be included in an eligible state’s service area.
To further combat the spread of COVID-19, the City of Memphis has issued Safer at Home Order effective 6 p.m. on March 24, 2020 through midnight April 7, 2020. The order directs all residents of Memphis to stay inside their homes and immediately limit all movement outside of their homes beyond what is absolutely necessary to take care of essential needs.
Across the country, consumer spending, which supports 70% of the economy, is crashing as people avoid stores, restaurants, movie theaters, offices, and other public places. Already, layoffs have begun in both big cities like Seattle and Atlanta as well as small heartland towns.
Per recent legislation by Congress, the Small Business Administration (SBA) is making a Disaster Relief Loan available to almost all Small Businesses. The SBA will be lending up to $2 Million to businesses at a 3.75% fixed interest rate with a repayment of up to 30 years.
Brookings Report: COVID-19 is hurting many industries and workers, but could it help trade and logistics?
COVID-19 is hurting many industries and workers, but could it help trade and logistics? A new Brookings report examines what trade and logistics workers may face in this ever-evolving landscape. Trade and logistics workers make up 14.2% of the workforce in Memphis.
Binghampton apartment community aims to spur growth and further revitalization in the area.
Brookings: No matter which way you look at it, tech jobs are still concentrating in just a few cities
A new report from Brookings shows that tech-based growth will likely “not diffuse out into America’s up-and-coming midsized cities and small towns on its own.” The report calls for a national innovative response in order to give heartland metro areas a seat at the tech table.
The EDGE Fiscal Year 2020 First and Second Quarter Report has been released.
EDGE President, Reid Dulberger spoke to the TVA Board of Directors at their meeting in Oxford, Mississippi, on February 12th. He was there to express the continued interest of the city, county, EDGE and the Port in working with TVA to redevelop the property at the former Allen Fossil Plant as a state-of-the-art marine multi-modal freight terminal for container and bulk products.
Two projects approved by the EDGE Economic Development Finance Committee on February 5th, will create a neighborhood hub and allow a small business to open in a long vacant and blighted building.
United Parcel Service, Inc. (UPS) is growing its operation and EDGE is working to make sure that expansion is in Memphis. The company currently operates a combination air sort and ground sort hub here that employs more than 1,300 people.
Blues City Brewery is looking to expand its operations to capture a bigger share of the beverage market. The company has been considering whether to expand here or one of its other facilities, but EDGE is providing assistance to keep that growth in Memphis. To remain competitive, the company needs to upgrade the aging manufacturing and processing equipment within its plant.
January 9th was the first quarterly meeting of the year for the Memphis and Shelby County Regional Economic Alliance (REA).
Korean manufacturing company, Hyosung Heavy Industries has big plans for the Mitsubishi Electric plant at the Rivergate Industrial Park – plans that include saving a number of jobs for workers there. The EDGE board of directors helped encourage the company’s purchase of that facility and the related job creation.
The Pallet Factory Inc., a 42-year-old family-owned company will be expanding its operations and creating more jobs. The company makes pine and hardwood pallets and refurbishes existing pallets throughout the southeast.
Residents in and around Orange Mound now have access to better food choices for their families. The long-awaited Superlo at 2269 Lamar held its grand opening on December 4th with Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland and Grizz helping to kick things off.
EDGE Board of Directors approved a 9-year Jobs PILOT for Renasant Bank (NASDAQ: RNST). The financial institution will invest more than $15.8 million in a new 45,000 square foot building in east Memphis for its regional headquarters and create 15 new jobs with an average salary of $93,333.
EDGE Board of Directors approved a 15-year Jobs PILOT for AutoZone Parts Inc (NYSE: AZO). The PILOT will encourage the automotive parts company to invest more than $145 million at 100-110 and 123 S. Front Street in Downtown Memphis and create 130 new jobs with an average salary of $80,439.
The Greater Memphis Alliance for a Competitive Workforce (GMACWorkforce) MOVE-HIRE program held its inaugural NexGEN Expo 2019 for approximately 225 area high school seniors interested in careers in medical device and advanced manufacturing on March 28th at the William R. Moore College of Technology.
Terry Peete, dba Al's Tasty Burger, was awarded a $20,000 Inner City Economic Development (ICED) Loan to help complete buildout of exterior renovations and improve visibility at 965 East McLemore.
The Port of Memphis received more than $1.7 million in grant funding from the State of Tennessee and an additional private local match to expand rail access and opportunities on Presidents Island. The rail project will be part of an overall redevelopment of the 58-acre public terminal facility.
In February 2019, GMACWorkforce hosted a 20-member delegation from Jobs for the Future (JFF) Congressional Staff Network on Economic Advancement. Participating Congressional staff included members of the United States Senate HELP Committee, House Education & Workforce Committee, Senate Finance Committee, and House Committee on Ways & Means.
EDGE joined with State and local officials to help FedEx Logistics move its headquarters to the vacant Gibson Guitar manufacturing plant in downtown Memphis. The 190,000 square foot facility will soon be home to 662 FedEx employees – 323 current Memphis staff plus 339 new positions. The jobs will average more than $80,000 per year excluding benefits.
In January 2019, EDGE worked with representatives from Riviana Foods, Inc. to secure a seven-year Jobs Payment-In-Lieu-of-Tax (PILOT) that will create 43 new jobs with an average salary of $43,000 and assist the company’s expansion in Memphis and Shelby County. If successful, total employment at the Memphis facility will top more than 400 full-time workers.
With assistance from EDGE through its Payment In Lieu of Tax (PILOT) program, transportation and logistics company, Power Transport plans to revitalize a vacant and underutilized collection of buildings on 8.5 acres near the Memphis International Airport and expand its operations.
The International Port of Memphis was awarded a $1.7 million Competitive Rail Connectivity Grant from the Tennessee Department of Transportation. The grant will help expand rail service on Presidents at the 58-acre public terminal facility.
The Council of Development Finance Agencies (CDFA) awarded EDGE the 2018 Distinguished Development Finance Local Agency Award. EDGE was recognized for tackling particularly complex and challenging financing concerns and the innovation of financing tools.
For the fourth consecutive year, EDGE/IDB PILOT recipients outperformed the anticipated minority/women/locally owned small business spend. PILOT recipients spent nearly $286 million with minority/women/locally owned small firms from 2012-2017, exceeding their commitments by almost $20 million.
Presented at a joint meeting of the Memphis & Shelby County Port Commission and EDGE, a new master plan for the Port of Memphis calls for infrastructure upgrades to Presidents Island and a short, middle, and long-range plan to help maximize the impact of 2,300 acres of under-developed industrial land in the adjacent Frank C. Pidgeon Industrial Park.
Developed by a team of Memphis-based investors, the Parkside at Shelby Farms Park project was approved for a 20-year TIF. The project is one of the largest private development projects in the City and County in recent decades and will generate substantial tax revenues to local governments, while helping stem outmigration of population to other areas.
South Memphis residents will soon have another grocery store option from which to choose. Cash Saver, operated by Memphis-based Castle Retail Group, is set to open its fifth grocery location at Southgate Center in South Memphis by late August 2018.
JNJ Logistics LLC was awarded a 15-year Expansion PILOT to encourage the company to invest $20.5 million at 5000 and 5050 American Way for a new corporate headquarters to accommodate their growing business.
The Poplar Corridor Business District is a 400+ parcel area located along Poplar Avenue in the City of Memphis, from immediately west of Interstate 240, east to the City line.
Working with the City of Memphis, the EDGE Board of Directors created a new program to help real estate developers offset the added cost of installing offline sewer storage and pumping facilities, in areas with inadequate sewer capacity during normal business hours.
The EDGE Board of Directors approved five projects for economic development incentives at the June EDGE board meeting. The five projects are: Broad Avenue Tower Mixed Used Development Residential Payment in Lieu of Tax (PILOT), Thrive at The Park Residential PILOT, Southgate Center Community Builder PILOT, Hollywood Feed Jobs PILOT 2nd Amendment, and Parkside at Shelby Farms Tax Increment Financing (TIF).
On Monday, June 11 at the 2018 Tennessee Municipal League Annual Conference, EDGE Senior Economic Development Specialist, John Lawrence served on a panel discussing the necessity of tax incentives, particularly Tax Increment Financing and Payment In Lieu of Tax programs.
In December 2014, the EDGE Board of Directors approved a 15-year PILOT for Cummins, Inc. The goal was to retain the company as they outgrew their Memphis facility. Now, in its third year of the EDGE PILOT program, Cummins is thriving and has exceeded its commitment for jobs, wages, and capital investment.
With help from EDGE, Mimeo.com is bringing 171 new jobs to Memphis – which includes relocating their headquarters from New York City. Mimeo will also relocate a production facility from Newark, NJ, and add sales positions, while retaining their existing Memphis location and its 284 jobs.
When the William R. Moore College of Technology (Moore Tech) and the Greater Memphis Automobile Dealers Association needed help to launch a new school to train auto technicians, they turned to EDGE.
EDGE/IDB PILOT recipients spent $240 million with minority/women/small local firms from 2012-2016, exceeding their commitments by more than $10 million.
The Northwest Company, LLC was awarded a ten-year EDGE Fast Track Payment-In-Lieu-of-Tax (PILOT). The project will bring 25 new jobs to Memphis with an average base salary of $34,250 excluding benefits and invest $5.7 million to the facility located at 4755 Southpoint Drive.
Ayele Akibulan, dba Kemet Nu Enterprises, was awarded a $15,000 Inner City Economic Development (ICED) Loan to help improve the exterior appearance, replace the roof, and install an HVAC system at 988/990 Mississippi Boulevard. Total project costs are $90,000 and project costs qualified for forgivable Inner City Economic Development Loan funds are estimated to be $59,700.
In cooperation with GMACWorkforce and HopeWorks, nine area businesses joined together to participate in the Mid-South Employer Resource Network (MSERN) initiative. The employer-based model joins an association of small- to mid-size businesses to provide job retention services, work support and training opportunities for employees.
While Memphis is knowns for its strengths in distribution and logistics, for the past twenty years Shelby County has emerged as the second largest county in the U.S. for medical device manufacturing. And since 1999, the Memphis medical device manufacturing industry employment has grown nearly 50%– more than four times the national rate of growth.
Family Multiplex Center(1025/1029 Whitney Avenue) was approved for a $20,000 ICED Loan to help improve the exterior appearance, upgrade electrical, and install an HVAC system for three new businesses located at 1025/1029 Whitney Avenue. Family Multiplex Center is owned and operated by Mr. Steven S. Dortch, Jr., a general contractor.
EDGE Board Member, Dr. Florence Jones was selected by the Murray State Alumni Association as one the 2018 recipients of the Distinguished Alumni Award.
GMACWorkforce is pleased to announce 100% of the trainees participating in the inaugural Earn While You Learn skills training program graduated and received opportunities to interview for permanent positions at area manufacturing facilities.
Gwendolyn Louise Smith, dba Lula’s Frozen Treats, was awarded an $18,000 Inner City Economic Development (ICED) Loan to help remodel the interior, add a patio, and install ADA compatible restrooms at 1750 Frayser Boulevard. Total project costs are estimated to be $37,211.
After previous approval by the EDGE Board in April 2017 for a JOBS PILOT, Ebrofrost North America, Inc.’s PILOT agreement was amended to include an increase of Net New Jobs with a higher annual salary component, an increase in occupied building percentage, and an increase in real property investment.
Across the next decade, it is estimated that nearly 3.5 million U.S. manufacturing jobs will be needed with 2 million of those jobs expected to go unfilled due to manufacturers’ inability to find talent with the required skills, according to the Fabricators & Manufacturers Association International.
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) launched recruitment for its 2018 Emerging Leaders executive-level training initiative. The SBA Emerging Leaders Initiative is a federal training initiative that specifically focuses on executives of businesses poised for growth in historically challenged communities. The initiative provides these executives with the organizational framework, resource network, and motivation required to build sustainable businesses and promote the economic development within urban communities.
With 18 PILOT project approvals, nine Inner City Economic Development Loans, three bond issues and nearly $683 million of projected capital investment, 2017 was an outstanding year for EDGE. In 2017, with a record number of PILOT approvals, EDGE encouraged more than $284 million of projected tax revenue and the creation/retention of nearly 3,800 jobs.
EDGE staff welcomed Ms. Tracy Buckley as the organization’s Manager of Economic Development Programs. Ms. Buckley will manage project compliance and the back office responsibilities associated with EDGE's PILOT, TIF, and ICED Loan programs.
The EDGE Board of Directors approved a $327,500 contract for a comprehensive master plan study for the Port of Memphis. The study will include Presidents Island, the Frank C. Pidgeon Industrial area, and the McKellar Lake Harbor. A team led by the Pickering Firm will conduct the study.
In partnership with Community LIFT, a local community development intermediary, and River City Capital, its local Community Development Financial Institution, EDGE applied to the Kresge Foundation for a capital allocation through the Social Investment – Arts & Culture program. The team was selected to deploy up to $1 million through loans in Memphis’ Creative Corridors in the areas of Soulsville, Crosstown/Medical District/Edge District, South City, and Binghampton/Broad Avenue.
On Wednesday, October 25, led by the Greater Memphis Alliance for a Competitive Workforce (GMACWorkforce) and the Greater Memphis Chamber, more than 25 private companies met with representatives from Shelby County Schools and several municipal school districts to discuss how the two groups can work together to improve and support career readiness in education.
The project located at 1544 Madison Avenue was awarded a 15-year Residential Payment In Lieu of Tax (PILOT) that will enable the developers to build a new $24 million class-A multifamily living facility in Midtown that will help increase population density in a historic location.
Amazon.com.dedc, LLC was awarded a 15-year Jobs Payment In Lieu of Tax (PILOT) that will encourage the company to create 600 new jobs for a state-of-the-art “receive center” to support Amazon’s North American fulfillment network.
The public has a lot of questions about the Economic Development Growth Engine (EDGE) and its Payment In Lieu of Tax (PILOT) program. People want to know what we are doing, how we are doing it and if we're effective. They also want to know whether companies are meeting their obligations and being held accountable.
EDGE Finance Committee approved two projects for the Inner City Economic Development (ICED) Loan Program, Stylist Salon (3240 N. Watkins) in Frayser and Soulsville Market (745 East McLemore) in South Memphis. The ICED Loan Program’s purpose is to spark revitalization of Memphis’ inner-city neighborhood business districts through small forgivable loans to assist with building improvements and business expansion.
AVT Beckett Elevators, Inc. was awarded a ten-year EDGE Fast Track Payment In Lieu of Tax (PILOT). The project will bring 25 new jobs to Memphis with an average salary of $35,992 excluding benefits and $3.5 million worth of capital investment to the facility located at 4949 East Raines Road. The Memphis location will be the company’s first facility located in the United States.
The EDGE FY2017 Annual Report is available for download and review on the EDGE website (http://www.growth-engine.org/sites/556/uploaded/files/Annual_Report_2017_FINAL.pdf)
EDGE has expanded its website to include an online PILOT application and a handy PILOT Incentive Estimator. The PILOT Incentive Estimator is a useful tool to help provide a quantifiable estimate of the potential financial benefit to both the Memphis and Shelby County community and PILOT applicant for a specific PILOT project.
Demographic growth is a key source of the workforce and a major driver for the local economy. The demand for public services reflects the size and composition of the local population. In general, slow steady growth communities like Memphis are stable and manageable. Economic fluctuations are minimized as a result of a broad and diverse employment base. Slow, steady economic and demographic growth stabilizes the housing market and minimizes the chaos associated with rapid growth or contractions.
In partnership with Grow America Fund (a Community Development Financial Institution licensed under the U.S. SBA Preferred Lenders Program), the EDGE Impact Fund will make SBA-guaranteed loans of $150,000 or more to small businesses throughout Shelby County.
Dr. Florence Jones was approved by both the Memphis City Council and the Shelby County Commission, having been nominated by Mayor Strickland, to serve on the EDGE Board of Directors. Dr. Jones is the CEO of Methodist North Hospital.
EDGE Board of Directors approved its first Residential Payment-In-Lieu-of-Tax (PILOT) project for a 108-unit multi-family development located at the intersection of Madison and McLean in Midtown Memphis. The intent of the Residential PILOT Program is to spark investment in market-rate multi-family residential rental projects in the City of Memphis and unincorporated Shelby County.
With assistance from EDGE through the Payment In Lieu of Tax (PILOT) program, Thomas & Betts, a member of the ABB Group, was awarded a fifteen-year Expansion PILOT that will enable the company to consolidate its corporate research and development operations from out-of-state into a new Memphis-based corporate headquarters location.
Mr. Reid Dulberger, EDGE President, was invited to speak at the Raising Awareness: Urban Innovations for Equity Symposium sponsored by New Orleans Business Alliance (NOLABA) on July 20th. Attended by New Orleans-area business stakeholders and government officials, the symposium’s goal was to introduce new and innovative strategies to accelerate growth among local minority and women-owned businesses.
As of June 29 according to the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development, there are an estimated 16,396 open and available jobs in the Memphis Metro area. There are dozens of online job postings and job boards littering the Internet. Yet, 22,999 Memphians remain unemployed. MemphisWorks, developed by the Greater Memphis Alliance for a Competitive Workforce (GMACWorkforce), hopes to help bridge this employment gap.
For the first time in four decades, a strategic plan will be developed to outline a new direction for Memphis and guide the City into its third century. The Memphis 3.0 plan is intended to create a City of great neighborhoods and maximize the City’s ability to improve the quality of life for all residents. Core focus areas of the Memphis 3.0 plan are connectivity, sustainability, livability, and opportunity.
With assistance from EDGE, a new grocery and retail shopping center will help lead the redevelopment of a nearly 20-acre parcel located in a blighted area of Frayser. With plans to construct a 97,300-square foot grocery anchored shopping center at 2571 North Hollywood, the Frayser Gateway project was awarded a 15-year Community Builder Payment in Lieu of Tax (PILOT) to G2 Venture Group.
Situated along on Summer Avenue in a former bank building, HopeWorks is a not-for-profit organization that seeks to serve the under-resourced through outreach programs that help develop individual worth, encourage personal responsibility, and promote the honor and value of work.
The Economic Development Growth Engine (EDGE) Board of Directors approved a twelve-year Payment-In-Lieu-of-Tax (PILOT) project for NouriTech, Inc. located on Presidents Island.
The Economic Development Growth Engine (EDGE) Board of Directors approved a 15-year Community Builder Payment-In-Lieu-of-Tax (PILOT) project for Neighborhood Docs. Neighborhood Docs plans to provide state-of-the-art healthcare services to the surrounding neighborhoods of Cherokee, Bethel Grove, and Orange Mound.
The EDGE Board of Directors authorized EDGE to move forward to prepare the appropriate policies and procedures for a PILOT test program for developers of multifamily residential. If these proposed policies and procedures are approved by the EDGE Board, the EDGE Residential PILOT test program will help encourage new and affordable multifamily housing within the City of Memphis and unincorporated areas of Shelby County.
The Economic Development Growth Engine (EDGE) Board of Directors approved two Jobs Payment-in-Lieu-of-Tax (PILOT) requests from Ebrofrost North America, Inc., and Nucor Steel Memphis, Inc. Currently, both facilities are vacant. These PILOTs will help put vacant buildings back in use while introducing a combined total of 31 new jobs.
The Economic Development Growth Engine (EDGE) Board of Directors approved two Jobs Payment-in-Lieu-of-Tax (PILOT) requests from Ebrofrost North America, Inc., and Nucor Steel Memphis, Inc.
Champion’s Pharmacy & Herb Store (2369 Elvis Presley Boulevard), a family-owned business started by Dr. Charles Champion in 1981 and now owned by his daughter, Dr. Carol Champion, was approved for a $20,000 EDGE Inner City Economic Development (ICED) Loan. The ICED Loan Program’s purpose is to spark revitalization of Memphis inner-city neighborhood business districts through small forgivable loans to assist with building improvements and business expansion.
River, road, rail and runway have long been recognized as strategic advantages for Memphis based companies. But now, several innovative manufacturers, including Sharp Manufacturing, Cummins, and Brother Industries, are using another source to maximize their presence in the world marketplace – Foreign Trade Zones.
Approved by the Memphis City Council, Shelby County Commission and EDGE Board of Directors, nearly 600 parcels of land surrounding the University of Memphis and the Highland Strip will be included in a tax increment-financing district that will raise an estimated $19 million across a 20-year term to help fund public improvements within the area, including safety, road, and public infrastructure.
Tucked away between a vacant warehouse and a busy retail strip is Social Suds Resource Center, a bustling Laundromat operated by the South Memphis Alliance. Just a mile away at Knowledge Quest, school-aged children busy themselves at the after-school urban garden while exploring possibilities within the culinary arts through the Jay Uiberall Culinary Academy. EDGE is proud to have assisted both programs as they work tirelessly to strengthen and revitalize South Memphis.
In November, EDGE approved a 10-year Fast Track PILOT for International Distributors USA (IDUSA) that resulted in bringing 40 new full-time jobs to Memphis. Previously based in Mississippi, IDUSA, an international supplier of auto parts distributed under the name Premium Guard, will spend nearly $6.5 million at the Memphis facility and generate nearly $2 million in local total tax revenues across the lifetime of the PILOT.
Across the next few years, a brand new $7 million retail center anchored by a national grocery store and home goods retailer will replace a once derelict, delinquent apartment complex situated on a busy urban corner in a USDA-classified food desert. The Binghampton Development Corporation was able to create this urban oasis in-part through EDGE’s Community Builder Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILOT) program.
Graceland, the third most famous home in the United States next to the White House and the Biltmore and one of Memphis’ most powerful economic engines, is the centerpiece to a $137 million, three-phase redevelopment project. The massive undertaking will also serve as the catalyst to the redevelopment of Memphis’s Whitehaven neighborhood.
Quietly operating from a small space on South Barksdale, Camy Archer had been serving a loyal Midtown and Downtown clientele tasty sandwiches, pizzas, and desserts for the past 23 years. However, after her lease was set to expire, Ms. Archer found herself without a location. Ms. Archer quickly reestablished Camy’s in a small 800 square foot commercial kitchen space at 2886 Walnut Grove, just a few miles east of the old location. The new location would enable Ms. Archer to continue serving her existing clientele along with expanding into the more eastern areas of Memphis.
In Fall 2016, EDGE helped W.M. Barr reshore manufacturing operations from China, which will result in 40 new full-time jobs. A manufacturer of specialty cleaning and home improvement products, Memphis-based W.M. Barr will invest nearly $12 million at its Presidents Island facilities.
On Wednesday, March 2, local dignitaries and hundreds of Elvis fans alike joined together to celebrate the opening of Elvis Presley’s Memphis, a 200,000 SF entertainment complex featuring museums, restaurants, gift shops, and more. Just part of a $137 million, three-phase development project for Graceland, collectively this project will serve as the catalyst to the redevelopment of Memphis’ Whitehaven neighborhood.
Mr. Fred Spikner never really considered himself an environmentalist. Since college, Spikner has been working as a commercial screen printer and embroiderer and opening his own facility in Midtown Memphis. It was not until a choice turn down the street in South Memphis in 2014 that Spikner became interested in cardboard recycling.
Memphis is home to 47 medical device companies that employ more than 16,800 employees according to the Greater Memphis Medical Device Council. Employment at medical device manufacturers ranges from assembly work to industrial engineering to sales representatives (TheMemphisEconomy.com, 2017) Collectively, these companies provide a $2.6 billion economic impact to Memphis and Shelby County.
Construction for the Binghampton Gateway Center broke ground on February 22. The Binghampton Gateway Center project is the first recipient of the EDGE Community Builder Payment-in-Lieu-of-Taxes (PILOT). The EDGE Community Builder PILOT’s intent is to spark investment and job creation in distressed areas of Memphis and unincorporated Shelby County and tailored specifically to aid community development groups looking to tackle larger projects.
A recent report issued by government and corporate accountability watchdog, Good Jobs First, identified EDGE (identified as Memphis-Shelby County in the report) as one of the top ten organizations for transparency in incentive disclosures. EDGE scored 85 out of 100 points – tying for fourth place with Nassau and Suffolk Counties (NY) and Franklin County (OH) for incentive program transparency (http://www.goodjobsfirst.org/sites/default/files/docs/pdf/showusthelocalsubsidies2.pdf). EDGE was recognized for its accessible disclosure of incentive information and “robust company-specific disclosure site” (database.growth-engine.org).
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) launched recruitment for its 2017 Emerging Leaders executive-level training initiative, formerly known as e200, in the Memphis area. The SBA Emerging Leaders Initiative is a federal training initiative that specifically focuses on executives of businesses poised for growth in historically challenged communities. The initiative provides these executives with the organizational framework, resource network, and motivation required to build sustainable businesses and promote the economic development within urban communities.
The University of Memphis and the Economic Development Growth Engine for Memphis and Shelby County are pleased to announce the formation of a joint venture between the Sparks Bureau of Business and Economic Research (SBBER) at the University of Memphis and EDGE to develop a data warehouse, web portal, and associated editorial content.