Main St. downtown Benton Harbor
Aerial View of St. Joseph
During 2014 businesses in the far southwest corner of Michigan invested $28 million in the region, reports Cornerstone Alliance.
The Cornerstone Alliance team says it met with more than 100 current businesses in 2014 to identify opportunities for growth. As a result, nine local businesses made a commitment to invest $28.4 million in the region, affecting 308 jobs.
Of those 308 jobs, 162 are new and the commitment to invest in the region helps retain 146 jobs.
Cornerstone Alliance’s work to attract new business investment to the community included one-on-one visits with site selectors, location advisors, business decision-makers and influencers. The meetings took place around the country and in Benton Harbor, St. Joseph and other communities in the region.
The team visited Atlanta, Orlando, Chicago, New York City and Dallas to meet with those who might be interested in locating in Southwest Michigan.
Further, Cornerstone Alliance’s Small Business Services and Women’s Business Center team announced the launch of 20 new start-up businesses in 2014 throughout Berrien, Cass, and Van Buren counties. That represents Investments of $646,000 in 2014 and 47 jobs in the tri-county area.
The economic development organization also made it easier for those making decision on where to locate their business to find out about Berrien, Cass, and Van Buren counties by launching a new website. It features a searchable database of commercial and industrial properties for sale or lease in Berrien County, and a wealth of information supporting business investment in the region.
Cornerstone Alliance President Vicki Pratt says, "We thought we could get 10 businesses launched in 2014. We thought that was a fairly lofty goal, but guess what? We launched 20."
As they were expecting to have $500,000 in investment in the area, the first year of their three-year strategic plan was a success,
Source: Cornerstone Alliance
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