From: Missouri Department of Economic Development []
Sent: Friday, February 21, 2014 6:01 AM
Subject: Missouri Focus - The Economic Development Newsletter for the State of Missouri
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February 21, 2014
Catalent Pharma Solutions to Expand in Kansas City, Create 230 New Jobs
Missouri Governor Jay Nixon recently joined officials from Catalent Pharma Solutions to announce that the company is planning a substantial investment in Kansas City. The expansion project includes a more than $30 million investment in the company’s site and is expected to create more than 230 new jobs. “Today, high-tech companies like Catalent can take their investments anywhere in the world, and it’s no accident that they’re choosing to expand here in Missouri,” said Gov. Nixon. John Chiminski, President and CEO of Catalent Pharma Solutions, added, “We look forward to increasing our presence here and playing a larger role in the state’s growing life sciences industry.” Catalent Pharma Solutions is the leading global provider of advanced delivery technologies and development solutions for biologics, drugs, and consumer health products. With its network of nearly 30 facilities across five continents, the company currently serves 85 of the top 100 pharmaceutical marketers and 41 of the top 50 biologic marketers. Work performed at the company’s Kansas City facility, which is designated as a center of excellence for Accelerated Development Programs, will drive the development and supply of medicines that have potential to improve or save patients’ lives. Read more...

Global IT Company to Invest $1.8 Million in Chesterfield
Netelligent, a leading technology solutions company, recently announced plans to invest $1.8 million in its Chesterfield headquarters in order to support its global operations. The company also plans to hire 60 additional employees in Chesterfield. Netelligent provides companies with the basic technologies they need to run their businesses, including phone systems, networking, video, and servers. In addition to its Chesterfield headquarters, the company also has data centers in downtown St. Louis, Denver, and Singapore. “When we launched Netelligent in 2003, we recognized Missouri as a place where we could really grow and succeed,” said Aaron Stone, president and CEO of Netelligent. “And today, Missouri continues to build upon that business-friendly reputation, offering the type of environment that allows high-tech companies like ours to thrive.” This expansion announcement further strengthens Missouri’s position as a national leader in technology job growth. According to a recent analysis by using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Missouri was the fastest-growing state for technology employment in 2013, gaining 2,700 tech positions throughout the year. Read more...

Xceligent to Create 211 New Jobs in Blue Springs
Commercial real estate information provider Xceligent recently announced that it will be expanding its presence in Missouri. The company plans to expand its corporate headquarters in Blue Springs, a capital investment of $525,000 that is expected to create an additional 211 new jobs. “We are proud to be joining the Blue Springs business community,” said Doug Curry, Xceligent CEO. “Blue Springs provides a high-quality of life and a vibrant atmosphere that complements Xceligent as a strong and growing company. It’s a community where employees can be proud to work and live.” Xceligent is a leading provider of verified commercial real estate information across the United States. The company’s research team collects and analyzes data to assist real estate professionals, appraisers, owners, investors, and developers in making strategic decisions to lease, sell, and develop commercial properties. Missouri Department of Economic Development Director Mike Downing also noted, “Xceligent’s expansion will not only benefit Blue Springs’ local economy, but will have wide-reaching benefits throughout the state." Read more...

International Law Firm to Create 100 Jobs in Kansas City
Missouri’s economy recently gained more momentum with an announcement by international law firm Sedgwick LLP to open a new administration center in downtown Kansas City. The company plans to invest more than $4.6 million to open its Kansas City office, which will create 100 jobs over the next five years.“Being located in the heart of the country, Kansas City offers us a unique opportunity to tap into a diverse and talented workforce in a vibrant and pro-business environment, thus allowing Sedgwick to better meet the evolving needs of our clients and our thirteen domestic and two international offices,” said Michael Tanenbaum, Chair of Sedgwick LLP. “For Sedgwick, Kansas City is an excellent fit.” Sedgwick LLP plans to consolidate its global administrative operations in Kansas City. In doing so, it will be able to improve overall company efficiency, as its global, firm-wide services and operations for its Finance, Human Resources, Information Technology, Marketing, Knowledge Management, and New Business functions will be located under one roof. The law firm’s Shared Services Center is expected to begin operations in June 2014. Read more...

Hufft Projects, LLC to Create 12 New Jobs in Kansas City
Kansas City architecture firm Hufft Projects, LLC recently announced plans to expand its local operations and add 12 new employees. The company will be relocating to a new, larger facility in Roanoke Park, which will allow it to increase staff and expand its services. “We’re proud to be investing in Kansas City and creating jobs in our community,” said Matthew Hufft, owner of Hufft Projects. “Missouri’s favorable business climate and diverse economic resources have contributed to our success, and we thank the state and Kansas City for their partnership in pursuing expansion.” Founded in 2005, Hufft Projects is an award-winning architecture firm with a diverse design collection. The firm’s craftsmen offer a variety of expertise, ranging from graphic or interior design to high-end architectural metal fabrication to solid furniture construction. Read more...

Missouri Again Tops All States for Technology Job Growth
For the second consecutive year, research has found that Missouri is the fastest-growing state for technology employment. According to a recent analysis by, using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Missouri gained 2,700 tech positions in 2013, a more than 8 percent increase when compared to 2012. Overall, Missouri finished 2013 with 34,700 tech workers, the highest amount dating back to 2002. In comparison, the state had 32,000 tech jobs in 2012, and 27,500 tech jobs in 2011. According to, Missouri’s 2013 rate of technology job growth was followed by Massachusetts (8.1 percent), Illinois (6.6 percent) and Texas (5.8 percent).  Read more...
Register Now! Missouri Partnership Informational Webinar
The Missouri Partnership would like to invite you to participate in an informational webinar that it will be hosting next week. The webinar will take place on Thursday, February 27, and will feature guest presenters from the Site Selection Group, a Dallas-based site selection consulting firm. The webinar will focus on “Best Practices for Site Selection RFP Responses,” and promises to be a valuable presentation on the Request-for-Proposal (RFP) process as seen from the perspective of nationally active site-selection advisors. The webinar is free to MEDC members, although prior registration is required. There is a limit of 100 participants, so prompt registration is recommended. To register, please click here.

New Business Incubator Coming to St. Charles
St. Charles will soon be home to a new business incubator known as Old Post Office Startups, which will be located in the historic Post Office building on Main Street in St. Charles. The 10,000 square-foot facility aims to serve as a regional hub for early-stage digital startups and IT firms, providing companies with an affordable workspace as well as access to business mentors, potential investors and educational resources. The project is being funded by Randy Schilling, a St. Charles native that is no stranger to the startup scene, having launched a technology company in 1993 that generated $34 million in revenue before he sold it in 2010. He purchased the historic building last fall, and is estimating that renovations will cost between $1.2 million and $1.5 million. Schilling also said he hopes to have the facility, which will be managed by the Economic Development Center (EDC) of St. Charles, “ready to go” by September 1. Read more...

Missouri Partnership Launches New Website
The Missouri Partnership recently launched a new website, featuring streamlined navigation, an international company database, and responsive design for improved user experience on tablets and mobile devices. The site is divided into four sections: Why Missouri highlights Missouri’s advantages for domestic and international businesses, with a special emphasis on foreign-owned companies; The Industries section details Missouri’s targeted industry sectors and subsectors; Sites, Incentives & Data provides users with critical data for initiating the expansion/relocation process; and About Us features the Partnership team, along with news, events, and links to partnering organizations throughout the state. The new format is designed to streamline information for those looking to Missouri as a new business location. Tour the site at

Missouri Occupation Brief: Information Technology Careers    
There is a high demand for Information Technology (IT) occupations across the state of Missouri. IT professionals interact with every level of an organization’s structure, and are drivers of innovation at most businesses. Technology now connects people and businesses on a global scale, and an unprecedented number of firms of all types and sizes need help with information technology products. Almost nine in 10 (88 percent) industries in Missouri employ over 81,000 people in information technology occupations. Read more...

St. Louis and Kansas City Rank among Top 20 Most Literate Cities
The Central Connecticut State University (CCSU) study recently ranked St. Louis and Kansas City in the top 20 most literate cities in the nation. The study was based on six key indicators of literacy, including educational attainment, newspaper circulation, library resources, number of book stores, periodical publishing resources, and internet resources. Read more...

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Truman State Ranks among Best Value Colleges
The Princeton Review recently ranked Truman State University as the 9th Best Value Public College in 2014. With an undergraduate enrollment of just under 5,500, Truman State boasts a 57% four-year graduation rate, and a 17 to 1 student/faculty ratio. Truman State also makes higher education more accessible by keeping tuition rates low. For residents of Missouri, tuition is only $7,096. And 91 percent of Truman students receive financial aid. In fact, the school offers two full-ride scholarship awards to incoming freshman. The school has financial aid available for students interested in study abroad and/or undergraduate research. The ranking was based on an analysis of admissions, tuition and financial aid data for about 650 colleges. University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill took the top spot on the 2014 Best Value Colleges list. Truman State University was the only school from the Midwest to make the Top 10 list. Read more...

Community Partnerships Help Grow Three Rivers College
Three Rivers College is one of the nation’s fastest growing community colleges for the second year in a row, according to Community College Week. Three Rivers College credits its growth to working directly with local partners to help meet training and educational needs. "Three Rivers prides itself on working within the communities we serve. We've put intense effort into forming partnerships with local employers and leaders. From there we've been able to customize our programs and job skills training programs to help meet the needs of residents who want to build a better future for themselves. The focus is clearly paying off," said Three Rivers College President Dr. Devin Stephenson in an interview with the Daily Dunklin Democrat. Three Rivers College has also expanded its service area to include Sikeston, Dexter, Kennett, Malden, Willow Springs and Cape Girardeau. Availability of satellite classrooms throughout Southeast Missouri and online courses have also contributed to increased enrollment. The ranking was based off enrollment between Fall 2011 and Fall 2012. During that time, enrollment at Three Rivers College increased by 25 percent, or 921 students. Read more... 

St. Joseph Ranked in Top 10 Fastest Growing Economies
St. Joseph recently earned recognition as the 7th fastest growing economy in the United States, according to USA Today. St. Joseph’s economy grew by nearly 10 percent in 2012, and the city’s unemployment rate has dropped to 4.8 percent, more than 2 points below the national average. Reflecting Missouri’s overall diverse economy (third most diverse in the nation), St. Joseph has a number of strong and growing industries, including advanced manufacturing, agriculture, and animal health sciences. In just the past year, a number of major businesses have announced expansions in St. Joseph. St. Joseph was also recently ranked 4th for real gross domestic product growth according to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis. The rankings were compiled based on the Conference of Mayors’ economic report. Read more...


Missouri Ranks 2nd in Beef Cows
Between 2012 and 2013, Missouri’s beef cow count increased by 63,000, making the Show-Me State the second highest producer in the nation. Missouri previously ranked second from 1983 to 2008, but was surpassed by Nebraska for the past five years. In total, Missouri counts about 1.8 million beef cows. While the total is still down from Missouri’s more than 2 million cows in 2008, high cattle prices are allowing ranchers to continue to expand production. Texas remains the number one beef cow producer with almost 4 million cows. Oklahoma ranked third and Nebraska dropped to fourth. Read more...

National Trends in Disability Employment 2013 Review/2014 Preview
Although there are reasons for optimism, the job picture for people with disabilities remains uncertain entering 2014, according to authors of the monthly report that tracks disability employment. In 2013, Kessler Foundation teamed with the University of New Hampshire's Institute on Disability (UNH-IOD) to release a monthly report - Trends in Disability Employment - National Update (TIDE) - in conjunction with the release of national data by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Every 'Jobs Friday', TIDE provides a unique perspective on employment data for people with disabilities. This 2014 Preview/2013 Review report is a special edition of TIDE, analyzing data from 2013 and looking ahead to 2014. This report illustrates why there is serious concern entering 2014: The last quarter saw job numbers reflecting the persistent impact of the Great Recession on people with disabilities, most notably, low labor force participation rates - the percentage of people who are working or actively looking for work - and employment to population ratios - the percentage of people who are working relative to the total population. Read more... 

Companies Join Commitment to Aid Long-Term Unemployed
While hosting more than 150 corporate CEOs, workforce and labor leaders and others at the White House, President Obama announced a series of efforts to help Americans shed the stigma of long-term unemployment and get the training they need to find a good job. Many workers from across the country came to the White House to share their stories about how they overcame long-term unemployment during a panel discussion with Secretary Tom Perez. Many more workers were represented by leaders of the public workforce system who were in the audience, and whose programs have connected thousands with new jobs. The president announced commitments from more than 300 private-sector companies to give long-term unemployed job candidates a fair shot. He also signed an executive order instructing federal agencies to act in the same spirit and not discriminate against candidates who are unemployed or facing financial difficulties. Unveiling a new Ready to Work Partnership grant competition from the department that will fund innovative, public-private re-employment and job training programs, the president stated that the goal of these efforts is "connecting more ready-to-work Americans with ready-to-be-filled jobs." Following the president's remarks on Jan. 31, Secretary Perez moderated a panel with formerly long-term unemployed workers who are now succeeding in good jobs thanks to local, department-funded workforce development programs. Some of the companies signing on with Missouri ties or presence include AT&T, Boeing, Ford Motor Company, General Motors Company, Monsanto and State Farm Insurance. Read more...

Construction Industry Pledges to Hire More Than 100,000 Veterans in Announcement with Joining Forces and U.S. Labor Department
In a recent announcement at A National Symposium: Veterans' Employment in Construction, hosted by the U.S. Department of Labor and Joining Forces, First Lady Michelle Obama and U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez celebrated a broad coalition of construction employers and associations that have collectively pledged to hire 100,000 veterans over the next five years. Also at the announcement were representatives of the construction companies making these hiring commitments, veterans who have completed apprenticeships in the construction industry, and other leaders in the field. In an op-ed that ran in the Wall Street Journal, the First Lady wrote: "Today, more than 100 American construction companies came together to announce that they plan to hire more than 100,000 veterans within the next five years. They made this commitment not just because it's the patriotic thing to do, and not just because they want to repay our veterans for their service to our country, but because they know that it's the smart thing to do for their business." Read more...

Nanopore Diagnostics Wins 2013 Olin Cup
St. Louis-based startup Nanopore Diagnostics was recently named the winner of the 2013 Olin Cup business plan competition, securing the company a $50,000 investment from Washington University. The Olin Cup is organized by Washington University’s Skandalaris Center for Entrepreneurial Studies, and typically offers investment money to three winning companies. Founded by Washington University student Tom Cohen in October 2012, Nanopore is a startup developing a test that physicians can use to more quickly detect bacterial infections. According to Cohen, the test will allow physicians, within 20 minutes of an initial examination, to determine with 100 percent confidence if a patient has a bacterial infection. In addition to this investment, Nanopore was also one of two companies to win the $2,500 BioSTL award during the 2013 Startup Challenge, and a $50,000 i6 grant from the BioGenerator in December. Genetix Fusion, a biotechnology company introducing next-generation transfection kits for biomedical researchers, and SynerZ Medical, which is developing an outpatient device that mimics the actions of gastric bypass surgery, were each offered $20,000 investments for finishing second and third in the competition. Read more...

Lighthouse for the Blind-Saint Louis’ Acquisition to Boost Employment, Revenue
Lighthouse for the Blind-Saint Louis (LHB), a not-for-profit manufacturing and packaging organization with a dedicated social service mission, recently acquired California-based Quake Kare, Inc., a leading supplier of emergency preparedness kits, emergency supplies and survival kits. Quake Kare’s current customer base includes clients such as Google, Chevron, Verizon, Pfizer, Intel, American Express-Japan, Time Warner Cable and more. The deal, which closed on February 4, is expected to increase LHB revenues and employment at its two manufacturing and shipping plants in St. Louis County. The company’s expanding operations will provide more employment for people who are blind or legally blind, as well as increase income to supply outreach programs for visually impaired people in Missouri. John Thompson, president of Lighthouse for the Blind-Saint Louis, noted that he hopes the acquisition will add $2 to $3 million to LHB’s revenues in 2014.  Read more...

Kansas City Reports Increased Convention Bookings
The Kansas City Convention & Visitors Association recently reported that during 2013, the organization booked 232 conventions for future years. In all, the bookings will generate a total of 305,000 room nights – a 29 percent increase from the room nights associated with bookings made during 2012. Additionally, the total estimated economic impact on the local economy from 2013 bookings is currently $254 million, a 40 percent increase over 2012. “Kansas City is on the rise,” said KCCVA Interim CEO Jon Stephens. He also attributed the increase in convention bookings to $9 billion worth of downtown improvements made during the past several years. Some of the largest Kansas City convention deals booked in 2013 include: an extension of USA Volleyball’s Show Me National Qualifier through 2018, which attracts 13,000 attendees and generates more than $13.8 million in economic impact each year, Cerner Corp.’s annual health conference in November, which attracts 10,000 attendees and generates an $11.2 million economic impact, and the Church of the Nazarene annual convention in February 2015, which attracts 5,000 attendees and generates $6 million in economic impact. Read more...      

Home Depot to Hire 975 in St. Louis
The Home Depot is planning to hire 975 seasonal workers in St. Louis in preparation for spring, its busiest selling season. This figure is unchanged from the number that the retailer had targeted for seasonal hiring last year. Nationwide, it expects to add approximately 80,000 associates for spring sales. Currently, Home Depot has more than 20 stores in the St. Louis area. Read more...

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Upcoming Seminar: Canada and the U.S.: Friends, Partners, Allies
The 2014 Boeing Distinguished Guest Lecture in International Business will welcome His Excellency Gary Doer, Ambassador of Canada to the United States, to Missouri on March 5 for a seminar entitled, “Canada and the U.S.: Friends, Partners, Allies.” The seminar, which is sponsored by Saint Louis University John Cook School of Business and the Boeing Institute of International Business, which take place at 5 p.m. at the Anheuser-Busch Auditorium in the John Cook School of Business. Currently, Canada is the largest trading partner of the United States as well as Missouri’s largest export market. Ambassador Doer, who has served as Canada’s representative to the United States of America since 2009, will expound upon this relationship, drawing upon his extensive work to enhance Canada-U.S. cooperation on trade, agriculture, water protection, climate change, and renewable energy. This event is complimentary, but reservations are required. Please click here to make reservations to attend. Read more...

How to Do Business and Invest in Brazil: Agribusiness Opportunities
On Tuesday, February 25, the World Trade Center St. Louis will be hosting an event entitled, “How to do Business and Invest in Brazil: Agribusiness Opportunities – The Strength of the Brazil Central Region.” Attendees are invited to meet with agribusiness players and get first-hand information about trade, investment, and business opportunities in Brazil’s central region. The event will take place from 9:30 – 11:30 a.m. on February 25th, and will feature speakers Rafael Lousa – Secretary of Industry and Commerce of the State of Goias, and Camila Moura – International Affairs Manager, AmCham Brasil. The session is complimentary and includes a continental breakfast, but registration is required. Please click here to register for this event. Read more...

Global News
Missouri Partnership Marketing Events
Schedule of Missouri Partnership Marketing Events 
February 24, 2014
Deadline for FY2015 Missouri Arts Council Grants
February 25, 2014
How to do Business and Invest in Brazil: Agribusiness Opportunities
St. Louis, MO 
March 3, 2014
2014 Missouri Community Service Commission Annual Celebration of Volunteerism and Service Nominations Deadline
March 3-6, 2014
Governor's Trade Mission to Montreal and Toronto
Montreal & Toronto, Canada 
March 5, 2014
Canada and the U.S.: Friends, Partners, Allies
St. Louis, MO 
March 8-14, 2014
Infrastructure Business Development Mission to the Gulf Cooperation Countries
Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Qatar 
March 26-27, 2014
InvestMidwest Venture Capital Forum
St. Louis, MO 
April 7-11, 2014

Grantsmanship Training Program
Nevada, MO 

April 8-11, 2014
Food & Hotel Asia Trade Show
Singapore, Singapore
April 24-26, 2014
BioTech China 2014 Trade Show
Shanghai, China 
May 13-16, 2014
Seoul Food & Hotel Trade Show
Seoul, Republic of Korea 
May 20-22, 2014
CPhI Southeast Asia Trade Show
Jakarta, Indonesia
June 2-6, 2014
Missouri Agribusiness Academy
Northwestern and Jefferson City, MO 
July 14-18, 2014
2014 Farnborough Air & Trade Show
London, England 
Missouri Focus
February 7, 2014
Missouri Focus
January 31, 2014
Missouri Focus
January 24, 2014
Missouri Focus
January 17, 2014

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