The Southeast Compass Spring 2012

From the President... State Affirms Southeast as a Key Logistics Portal

Logistics – the movement of goods from their production site into the eager hands of end-users – constitutes from 15% to 20% of the total cost of a finished product, according to the World Trade Organization. As energy costs continue rising, businesses are seeking solutions for constraining logistics costs while still reliably meeting demand and maintaining profit margins. The trend is good news for Southeastern North Carolina, whose accessible geography, multi-modal transportation assets and affordable business costs make it a natural choice for global logistics operations.  Read More>>

Location Consultant: Southeast Well Positioned for FDI

Over $1.1 trillion in foreign direct investment (FDI) flowed through the global economy in 2010 according to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development. Much of that came into U.S. regions from around the world. Given the presence of a deepwater port, along with large chemical and consumer-foods industry clusters, Southeastern North Carolina is well-positioned to draw a healthy share of FDI. Such is the conclusion drawn by a major site selection consultant.  Read More>>

Planning Session Draws Local Developers, Allies and Partners to Wilmington

Some 32 economic developers, educational partners and business allies participated in North Carolina’s Southeast’s annual Technical Advisory Group (TAG) planning session on February 8-9, 2012. This year’s event was held at the Port of Wilmington and the new Wilmington Convention Center. Guest presenters covered a broad array of topic areas, including marketing tools, workforce development and transportation.  Read More>>

North Carolina’s Southeast Hosts Commerce B&I Team

Top personnel from the N.C. Department of Commerce (DOC) joined local and regional economic developers in the Southeast for a half-day briefing and discussion of job creation programs, available locations and business recruitment strategies. The meeting took place on January 30, 2012, at North Carolina’s Southeast’s offices in Elizabethtown. Dale Carroll, DOC deputy secretary and COO, and Susan Fleetwood, director of DOC’s Business & Industry Division, led the state’s delegation.  Read More>>

Yost Chairs Regional Biotech Center Advisory Panel

NCSE President Steve Yost was recently selected to chair the Advisory Committee of the North Carolina Biotechnology Center’s Southeastern Office. The 18-member panel helps guide the activities of the Biotech Center across the Southeast Region’s 11 counties, programs that embrace job growth and business development opportunities in marine-based life sciences, agricultural biotechnology, contract pharmaceutical research and next-generation bio-fuels.  Read More>>

Workforce Analysis Moves Toward Implementation Phase

Analysts at Regional Technology Strategies, Inc., (RTS) are nearing completion of an unprecedented regional assessment of the Southeast’s workforce needs and assets. The RTS research team has interviewed educators, company HR officials, economic developers and others during a process that began in 2011. “We’ve effectively finished our analysis, reviews and surveys,” says Chris Beacham, principal at the Carrboro-based firm. Mr. Beacham’s team will hold public meetings in Fayetteville and Brunswick County in April and May to solicite additional input before finalizing their conclusions and issuing recommendations.  Read More>>

NCSE Website Re-designs are a Hit with Location Hunters

Last fall, North Carolina’s Southeast unveiled a newly designed website that includes links to extensive regional economic and workforce data, county and industry “cluster” profiles, mapping images, testimonials and an innovative “report builder” that allows users to array, store and print information relevant to their unique needs. The site has quickly demonstrated its value as an initial point-of-contact for site seekers interested in the Southeast Region.  Read More>>

Southeast Developers Attend Site Selectors Guild Gathering

Orlando’s Hilton Hotel was the scene for a unique meeting of national location consultants and economic development leaders in January. Included among the first-ever Site Selectors Guild Conference’s 150 attendees were five county and regional economic developers from Southeastern North Carolina.  Read More>>

Regional Profile to be Presented April 18th

On April 18th, business leaders and elected officials will be on hand when academic researchers from three universities formally present North Carolina’s Southeast’s Regional Profile for 2012. Fayetteville State University, UNC Pembroke and UNC Wilmington collaboratively produce the annual publication. This year’s presentation luncheon will take place at the Madeline Suite on the campus of UNC Wilmington.  Read More>>

Woody Biomass Project Moves into Final Phase

A first-of-its-kind regional assessment for woody biomass in Southeastern North Carolina is moving into its third and final phase. Conducted in partnership with the Biofuels Center of North Carolina, the study has focused attention on promising woody biomass production sites in Robeson and Sampson counties. The recently completed second phase of the project considered biomass-specific infrastructure needs of the sites. “Phase III will consider transportation assets within 50-mile radii of the two sites,” says Joe Melvin.  Read More>>