Kern EDC’s Successful Year is Good for Local Economy
Dear Kern EDC Partner,
Kern EDC’s 2018-2019 fiscal year was a tremendous success, and we’d like to share a few of the highlights with you!
New Incentive Program Attracts Interest from Major Companies
The year kicked off with great promise as Kern EDC, the County of Kern, and other stakeholders collaborated to develop Advance Kern, a business recruitment and job growth initiative. The program aims to bolster industries throughout the county, and its first year successes included L’Oréal and Amazon.
Increased Focus on Talent and Entrepreneurship
In an effort to promote and develop Kern County’s entrepreneurial ecosystem, Kern EDC has partnered with the Seedcore Foundation to create the Kern Initiative for Talent and Entrepreneurship (KITE). KITE’s mission is to increase the rate of new business formation and job creation. KITE explores key components of talent, mentoring & coaching, shared/co-work spaces, business accelerators and incubators, and funding. A formal launch of the initiative will take place later this year.
Nine Project Announcements Leads to Banner Year for Kern EDC
Recruiting a business to the area is typically a lengthy process (sometimes years in the making). Kern EDC had a banner year with nine project successes since last July. In addition to Amazon and L’Oréal, other companies calling Kern County home included Hadco Metal Trading (which provides aluminum and other alloys throughout the world), Joyride Coffee (which delivers cold brew coffee kegs and specialty coffee through the country), and Walmart Cold-Storage (a high-tech distribution center which will process grocery perishables like produce, eggs, and flowers). These projects bring 4,645 total jobs (induced and indirect) and over $400 million in capital investment to the region.
On the Horizon
Two exciting companies have recently announced their plans to expand into Kern County.
Bitwise Industries announced in June that the Fresno-based tech hub would be expanding its operations to Bakersfield, purchasing a building in the downtown area and offering coding classes, shared-office space, and other tech and business incubator-type opportunities. In September 2017, Kern EDC hosted a “best practices” tour of Bitwise’s Fresno facilities with the goal of creating a regional innovation center in Kern County. We are happy to join with a variety of local partners in welcoming Bitwise and helping to facilitate their expansion!
Additionally, Hard Rock International announced plans in June to develop a $600 million resort in Kern County. Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tejon will generate 2,000 permanent jobs and 1,000 construction jobs with an estimated $60 million annual payroll. Kern EDC is excited to welcome this globally-recognized establishment and we look forward to the economic diversity and impact it will have on the region.
If you’d like to learn how you can become more involved in Kern EDC’s efforts or are interested in becoming a member, contact Sophia Gligorevic at Sophia@kedc.com or call (661) 862-5156.
Click HERE to view all of Kern EDC’s Successes