Productive year

Wednesday, we held our Annual Meeting which includes the Plus One Awards, and for the first time, a keynote speaker: Kristen Fish, Redevelopment Resources, LLC. We encourage our partners to attend this Annual Meeting as we think it is important to share our year-end results and show them the value of their investment. We also got to celebrate those local businesses who have added at least one new job in the past year. If you missed the meeting, below are the highlights.

Through the efforts of our strategic plan we have put in place internal and external metrics that keep the organization on track and accountable to our investors. Our economic development activities supported projects in all stages of development that impacted 10,639 jobs, retained 323 jobs and projected 856 jobs. We provided general business development, retention of existing business, business financing, business plan development, site location services, marketing and advocacy assistance to 306 clients, a 15.5 percent increase over 2012 and 5 percent above our goal. Our Economic Development Corporation loan portfolio served nine clients with over $670,000 in loan proceeds supporting 132 jobs across Marquette County.

In 2013, we welcomed 37 new partners, up 12 percent from 2012. We saw $14,845 in new partner revenue and a 91 percent retention rate.

Our Foundation continued to support the Great Start Collaborative, Lake Superior Partners in Education, the Lake Superior Leadership Academy, Geometry in Construction and the Electrical Line Technician Program.

Through our partnership with Michigan Works! and our Plus One program, we recognized 48 Marquette County businesses that all added at least one new futilize position in 2013. Together, they represent 241 new jobs in the county. Since we began the Plus One program seven years ago, 2,022 new jobs have been added. The companies responsible for these additions are: 906 Technologies, Bald Eagle Harley Davidson, Biogenic Reagents, Boomerang Retro & Relics, Checker Bus, Das Steinhaus, Dia de los Tacos, Discovery Central, Elegant Seagulls, Frei Chevrolet, Frontier Medical, Global Response, Great Lakes Center for Youth Development, Great Lakes Radio, Great Lakes Recovery Center, Integrated Designs, Inc. Marquette, Integrated Wellness, J.M. Longyear, LLC, Lakestate Industries, LASCO, Marquette County Road Commission, Negaunee Public Schools, Northern Initiatives, No-Shank, Inc, Outlanders Dinner To-Go, Panache: Events, Decor, Boutique L.L.C., Range Bank, River Valley Bank, Ron’s Taco Shop, Schramm’s Superior Properties, Select Realty, Spotless Results Cleaning, Superior Contact, Superior Design, Superior Rehabilitation & Professional Services, Superior Title Insurance, Theresa M. Sell FIC, Thrivent Financial, Tractor Supply Company, U.P. Sportsplex, Ulta Beauty, U.P. Catholic Credit Union, U.P. Home Health, Hospice & Private Duty, Upper Peninsula Health Plan, VAST, WBUP/WBKP-TV ABC 10/CW 5, Wealth Strategy Group, Window Outfitters and Yooper Shirts.

We want to thank Kristen Fish for taking the time to speak at our Annual Meeting. She discussed the importance of business retention and attraction and provided an outsiders perspective on our work in the county.

As you can see, we had a very busy 2013 and are proud of the results. We hope you’ll contact us if we can assist you in the New Year. And as always, please let us know if you add any new jobs, we’d love to recognize your company through the Plus One program at next year’s meeting. We’re looking forward to a very productive 2014.