Nearly 40 companies expanded in the Valley in the past year. GPEC says even more in the pipeline
Nearly 40 businesses decided to expand in the Phoenix area in fiscal year 2023 through Greater Phoenix Economic Council and its partners, according to the economic development organization’s annual report.
These included major projects such as the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co.’s and LG Energy Solution’s expanded investments as well as traditional manufacturers, distribution and logistics companies and for new headquarters.
“Despite economic uncertainty around the nation, GPEC continues to be a leader in business attraction and execution against civic priorities that set the stage for the next chapter of economic growth,” Chris Camacho, CEO of GPEC, said in a statement to the Business Journal.
The 37 companies that announced or expanded in the region in FY 23 also added 7,731 new jobs with an overall average salary of $72,443.
Of those new jobs, more than 5,000 were considered high-wage, or equalling 130% of the Phoenix area’s median wage, according to GPEC. The average high-wage salary for the new jobs was nearly $85,000.
Camacho said that expansion activity has leaned heavily industrial because of renewed onshoring manufacturing trends driven by the semiconductor, electric vehicle, energy storage, climate tech and other advanced industries looking to the U.S.
“We expect this trend to continue adjacently to the increase of advanced manufacturing for which Greater Phoenix is becoming nationally and internationally recognized,” he added.
Several notable company expansions in the past fiscal year include:
- JA Solar: A China-based solar module manufacturer leased a 765,000-square-foot facility in Phoenix with plans to hire an initial 355 people.
- Xnrgy: This Canadian manufacturer will expand into an initial 250,000-square-foot facility with plans to hire an initial 350 in Mesa for data center climate systems.
- Tokyo Electron America: This semiconductor supplier will occupy a nearly 17,000-square-foot facility and hire 300 people in north Phoenix.
- Rehrig Pacific Co.: A manufacturer of recycling bins is moving its headquarters out of Los Angeles with plans to build a 250,000-square-foot facility in Buckeye and hire an initial 122 people.
- Tradefull: An e-commerce solution and third-party logistics company located in a 190,516 facility in Goodyear with plans to hire 178 people.
- Mediterranean Shipping Co.: The Swiss shipping company will hire 170 people for its first phase at a 28,302 square-foot facility in Tempe.
- Townsquare Interactive: The digital marketing firm moved into nearly 12,000 square feet of office space in downtown Phoenix with plans to hire 100 people in its first phase.
Working to expand international presence
Roughly 246 companies were also considering the Valley as a potential home, including 61 international businesses, or 25% of prospects — the highest amount of international prospects GPEC has tracked on record.
“A large reason of that is due to TSMC and Intel’s supply chain expansions, but we have increased relationships with other foreign direct investment, embassies and organizations representing countries around the world,” Camacho said.
GPEC, as well as the state, have been working to expand their international presence in recent years. The organization participated in eight international conferences and hosted eight market visits in the past fiscal year, which generated nearly 60 prospective companies, according to GPEC.
Overall, GPEC hosted 13 events that saw 3,700 people attend such as Taiwan Tech Day, which was hosted in partnership with Taiwan External Trade Development Council in June. GPEC also hosted its largest delegation ever in the spring with auto and microchip companies mostly from Asia.
The new company expansion and job numbers for GPEC have stayed mostly consistent in the past several years, even before the Covid-19 pandemic.
From fiscal years 2018 through 2022, GPEC reports show that 42 to 55 companies expanded per year and a range of 240 to 279 companies were interested in moving to the Valley.
Fiscal year 2022 had the highest number of new jobs and expansions at 10,859 new jobs and 55 new businesses through GPEC. More than 4,700 of these jobs were considered high wage with an average $75,857 high-wage salary.
Overall, the Arizona Commerce Authority said it worked with companies that committed to creating more than 24,000 jobs in Arizona with an average wage of $71,893 and a record $40.7 billion in investment commitments in fiscal year 2023. These numbers also included TSMC and LG Energy Solution’s major investments.
Other big expansions planned in Arizona include Discount Tire, which is working to build a new headquarters in north Phoenix with 1,100 employees, and Procter & Gamble’s $500 million manufacturing plant in Coolidge with 500 new jobs.