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Rutherford County, TN Welcomes New Industries, Investment

Recent industry expansions, job creation and population growth make Rutherford County one of the top spots in Tennessee for business investment.

By Pamela Coyle on May 29, 2014

A wave of investment across a range of industries is bringing a surge of jobs to Rutherford County, making its business climate more inviting than ever.

Recent relocations and expansions by companies have created “a great opportunity for our community to work for new businesses in industries representing innovative technology and products,” says Brian Hercules, vice president of economic development for the Rutherford County Chamber of Commerce.

The influx of jobs in the area is fueling population growth. Since 2008, Rutherford County has experienced a 3.8 percent increase in employment and 7 percent growth in population. It ranks as the third fastest growing county in Tennessee and among the top 30 fastest growing counties in the U.S., according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Forbes magazine also named the Nashville-Davidson-Murfreesboro-Franklin, Tenn. MSA No. 2 in the nation for jobs.

Logistical Advantages

Rutherford County’s central location, mild climate and natural beauty make it a popular destination for businesses, job seekers and visitors. Its low cost of living at nearly 11 percent below the national average enables residents to maintain a high quality of life, while its Old South charm and progressive mindset offers them the best of both worlds.

From a distribution standpoint, the area is ideal, providing businesses with the infrastructure and convenient interstate access they need to easily move products to and from company facilities. Interstates 40, 24 and 65 intersect in nearby Nashville to provide access in all directions.

“This community has provided us with a central geographic location for our global headquarters, and we’re proud to employ about 1,700 associates in La Vergne,“ says John Ingram, chairman and CEO of Ingram Content Group.

Pro-business policies locally create a welcoming environment for industries to succeed, with a low tax burden and incentives that provide companies with the framework to relocate or expand. The economic diversity prevalent throughout Rutherford County has attracted businesses from a variety of industries, including automotive manufacturing, health care, transportation, logistics and education services.

Online retail giant Amazon.com moved into the area in 2012, locating a 1.25-million-square-foot fulfillment center in Murfreesboro. Equivalent to the size of 25 football fields, the facility is thriving with 1,100 workers currently employed.

“We are grateful to the community for welcoming our new fulfillment center to Rutherford County, where we are creating full-time jobs with competitive wages and comprehensive benefits,” says Nina Lindsey, Amazon spokeswoman.

A new 540,000-square-foot distribution center in La Vergne for Saks Incorporated has also sparked job growth.

Magnet for Investment

Schwan Cosmetics USA, a leading private manufacturing label of cosmetics pencils and products, is the most recent firm to invest in the area. The company is spending $38 million to establish a new manufacturing facility in Murfreesboro that is expected to generate a total of 450 jobs over the next five years.

Also accelerating economic growth in the region are Rutherford County’s Tier 1 and Tier 2 automotive suppliers, and the Smyrna plant for Nissan North America, Inc. is catalyst for ongoing investment. The auto giant added 900 new jobs to the plant in 2013 to support production of the Nissan Rogue.

“Nissan is a tremendous partner for our growing community over the past 30-plus years in Rutherford County,” Hercules says. “Not only has Nissan grown internally with new model platforms, but the addition of its suppliers has made the most significant change in the landscape of our employment picture.”

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