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Thursday, January 10 2019
Green Renewable Economy, Boom or Boondoggle?

By Don Holbrook, Site Location & Economic Incentives Consultant

The economy has been on a rabid growth spurt since 2012 or 2013 depending on your outlook on net job growth. In fact, 2018 has seen some of the best GDP in decades. But, all this could be coming to an end soon. Why? Another perfect storm has built up just over the horizon and is about to make landfall in the U.S. shortly.

The ingredients for this slow down or recession involve some major shortsighted blunders and some transitional timing as well.

The rising interest rates are putting pressure on over-leveraged companies, tied to a trade war threat, a major shortage of talented high tech and skilled workers buoyed by rising fossil fuel prices, and now you have our current chaotic economy.

Now along comes the renewable clean energy expansion, which is highly supported by the general public as the wave of ballot initiatives continued in 2018 to ratchet up conversion to clean energy benchmarks. 

Posted by: Nicole@ExpansionSolutionsMagazine.com AT 01:00 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, January 10 2019
Recent and Emerging Trends in Cybersecurity for Economic and Business Development

By Jim Damicis, Senior Vice President, Camoin Associates

What is Cybersecurity?
Hardly a day goes by with without news regarding cybersecurity threats. Whether it is about elections, eCommerce, business, or social media threats – digital systems are growing and creating both challenges and opportunities for business development. There are many definitions of cybersecurity. One I like to use is from computer systems leader, Cisco: “Cybersecurity is the convergence of people, processes and technology that come together to protect organizations, individuals or networks from digital attacks.
1” I like this definition because like it goes beyond technology to include people and processes. This aligns well with how I view economic development as operating within a dynamic system of people, organizations and networks.

Why is Cybersecurity Such a Big Deal?
So why such a big deal about cybersecurity? The answer: it is increasingly impacting our ability to conduct business from communications and networking, to markets, trade, logistics, and transactions. Additionally, our response to such threats to develop systems, services, and products that detect, correct, and protect is creating economic and business development opportunities. 

Posted by: Nicole@ExpansionSolutionsMagazine.com AT 12:30 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, January 10 2019
A Site Selector's Perspective to Profit from Your Data Center!

By Angelos Angelou, Founder & CEO, AngelouEconomics, AngelouEconomics.com

In real estate, it’s about: “Location, Location, Location!” Location matters – no really, it does!  When the data amount is region-specific, it is important to have data centers off-site in the areas when needed. It is also a great option for driving down costs coming from being away from a major data hub such as those in cities. This is more than just choosing a data center closest to the customer’s business operations. Additionally, communities looking to recruit a data center operation should look at their commercial energy costs, talent pool and potential underdeveloped areas to place a data center. Connectivity will be a key consideration for a data center and is a key consideration for data center customers.

Both technological advances and companies adapting to industry changes contributed to the growth in number of data centers and data center expansions. A significant amount of the IT budget is spent on maintenance to keep up with the updates from growing customer demand.

Posted by: Nicole@ExpansionSolutionsMagazine.com AT 12:00 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, January 10 2019
Plastics: Global Rankings and Industry Report

Summary
The 2018 Global Trends report, published by the Plastics Industry Association (PLASTICS), depicts a global plastics industry that is thriving despite numerous political and societal threats to the continued, unfettered operation of its supply chain.

At the time of this writing, the U.S. has attempted to rectify its trade imbalance with its trading partners. Existing free trade agreements have been updated and higher import tariffs have been imposed on a broad range of products—from aluminum and steel to other products vital to U.S. manufacturing, including plastics materials, machinery, products and molds.

Meanwhile, in the last 12 months, anti-plastics sentiment has grown as concerns about marine litter and waste have gripped the public consciousness. This has given proponents of material deselection a much greater audience for their arguments, and the introduction of bills that ban products like straws, bags and plastic foodservice packaging has continued, mainly in the U.S. and mainly in coastal states and communities.

Posted by: Nicole@ExpansionSolutionsMagazine.com AT 09:00 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, January 10 2019
Medical Device Manufacturing: A Growth Industry Healing the World

By Lisa A. Bastian, President, Bastian PR

The U.S. medical device industry holds the title as the world's largest medical device market, boasting a market size of around $156 billion. In 2017, the industry represented nearly 40 percent of the global medical device market.

Highly competitive and driven by heavily-funded R&D initiatives, its universe of diverse products prevent, diagnose and treat illnesses or diseases, or are used to detect, measure, restore, correct and modify a bodily function or structure for health reasons. Industry players create everything from dental equipment/supplies, electro-medical equipment and in-vitro diagnostics, to irradiation apparatuses, surgical appliances and medical instruments.

Posted by: Nicole@ExpansionSolutionsMagazine.com AT 08:30 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, January 10 2019
Technology in Key Supply Chains is Evolving Supply Chain and Logistics Planning

By Adam Wasserman, Managing Partner and Lois C. Yates, CEcD, GLDPartners

In one way or another, advances in product or business model technology has created quite significant changes in how companies are managing and planning their supply chains. Evolving corporate requirements have cascaded a wide range of new requirements to corporate supply chain managers and their external logistics partners. This dynamic has created a panoply of new challenges to what has been largely quite established and stabled supply chain environments.

To some in the logistics industry, these dynamics are creating new business opportunities, while to others these new requirements are producing challenges to legacy supply chain business. Generally speaking, these kinds of corporate requirement changes are causing upheaval and new logistics complexity – creating new opportunities for a number of logistics companies who are able to provide new service offerings and appropriate levels of product and customer care.

Posted by: Nicole@ExpansionSolutionsMagazine.com AT 08:00 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, November 20 2018
Oil and Gas Production at Record Highs and Fossil Fuels Continue to Play a Major Role in the U.S. Economy

By Angelos Angelou, Founder & CEO, AngelouEconomics, AngelouEconomics.com

Fossil fuels—love them or hate them, they’re the backbone upon which modern civilization was built. They’ve made nations. They’ve sparked wars. And, most importantly, they’ve provided the key ingredient for the most rapid and sustained economic expansion in human history.

Yes, it’s true that fossil fuels—coal, oil, and natural gas—are by their nature finite resources. It’s also true that their use releases climate-impacting carbon emissions into the atmosphere. These considerations, as well as the rise of a new generation of renewable energy technologies, all but guarantee that fossil fuels will largely go by the wayside at some point in the future. Maybe it will be in our lifetime. Maybe it will be in our children’s lifetime, or their children’s. Given the constantly evolving trends, tech, and geopolitics influencing the global energy sector, it’s hard to make long-term prognostications with any certainty.

Posted by: Nicole@ExpansionSolutionsMagazine.com AT 10:38 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Tuesday, November 20 2018
Profiling the Food and Beverage Industry: Trends In Baking And Snack Foods

By Frank Spano, Managing Director and Kyle Johnson, Location Consultant, The Austin Company

The food and beverage industry in the United States has shown positive signs of expansion over the past ten years. Forecasts and growth models indicate this expansion will continue into the future, though possibly at a slower rate. The following factors may assist in explaining this upward trend:

  1. Major plant upgrades at existing operations or replacement of older, outdated facilities. Continued plant upgrades and existing plant expansions may result in more automation and less job growth.
  2. New product innovation based on changing consumer demands.
  3. Continued market entry into the U.S. from smaller and medium-sized European and Asian operations, along with continued growth from established foreign-owned operations located in the U.S.

One notable portion of the food and beverage industry, the baking and snack food industry, shines as an important segment of the U.S. economy with nine percent growth from 2007 to 2017. The following discussion examines this industry over the past ten years and makes general conclusions on its projected growth.

Posted by: Nicole@ExpansionSolutionsMagazine.com AT 10:16 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Tuesday, November 20 2018
3D Printing Finds a Custom Foothold in Manufacturing

From rocket thrusters to shoe soles, additive technologies expand their sights
By M. Mitchell Waldrop - Originally published in Knowable Magazine

Since May 2015, in a portion of its WorldPort distribution center in Louisville, Kentucky, United Parcel Service has been operating a spare parts warehouse with no spare parts. Instead, the facility is stocked with ultrafast 3D printers that can build up almost any plastic part that’s required, layer by layer by layer—and have it ready for UPS to deliver anywhere in the United States by morning.

“It was a no-brainer,” says Alan Amling, UPS’s vice president for corporate strategy. Storing spare parts for quick delivery was already a big moneymaker for the company, he says. UPS operates more than a thousand field stocking locations worldwide—all full of items that somebody might need someday, maybe. The industrial customers who pay for that service have to keep the parts available because of warranty contracts, says Amling. But they hate it. “Inventory storage costs are massive,” he says. “So we started to see 3D printing as a solution.”

Posted by: Nicole@ExpansionSolutionsMagazine.com AT 09:40 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, November 19 2018
Reshoring: Changing Conditions Impact Location Decisions

By Harry Moser, Founder/President, Reshoring Initiative

For decades companies have been chasing cheap labor offshore and then importing products to sell in the U.S. market. The impact of offshoring on the U.S. economy has been significant. Offshoring to China and elsewhere have cost about five million U.S. manufacturing jobs, helped contribute to wage erosion and had a dramatic and negative effect on workers and the economy in every state. Communities have lost, on average, 27 percent of their manufacturing workforce since 2000. About 63 percent of the job loss is due to offshoring of jobs.

Companies have also been impacted, since their largest market, the U.S., has experienced flat or declining real personal incomes and thousands of business customers have disappeared. In view of the current strong surge of jobs back from offshore, understanding the reasons for the losses and the current opportunities to bring millions of jobs back can help site selection consultants and corporate real estate brokers succeed. Knowing what drives reshoring and FDI can help identify siting solutions that overcome the problems experienced offshore.

Posted by: Nicole@ExpansionSolutionsMagazine.com AT 09:06 am   |  Permalink   |  Email

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