Why are advanced manufacturing companies choosing the Greater Chattanooga Region?
Location, Location, Location
Located at the cross section of three major interstates—I-75, I-59, and I-24—the Chattanooga region is considered a logistical sweet spot. Excellent north/south and east/west connectivity means manufacturers located here are an easy drive from all southern automotive assembly facilities and can take advantage of one-day shipping to one-third of U.S. consumer markets. Less than a two-hour drive from metro Atlanta, Birmingham, Nashville and Huntsville, the area enjoys easy access to some of the Southeast’s most flourishing markets and more than 150 transportation carriers. It’s no wonder the region is consistently named one of the top 10 distribution locations in the U.S.
World-Class Workforce and Training
Companies in the region benefit from a large pool of non-union workers with manufacturing expertise. A boon to the continuous development of manufacturing talent, local community colleges and 12 accredited higher education institutions offer customized technical training programs that have served more than 200 businesses and trained more than 12,000 workers in a variety of sectors, including energy, chemicals, heavy equipment, and automotive. Programs offered in the region include:
- Automated Controls
- Chemical Engineering Technology
- Computer Systems
- Design/Drafting Engineering Technology
- Electrical & Instrumentation Systems
- Engineering Systems Management
- Industrial Technology
- Mechanical Engineering Technology
- Nuclear Power Engineering Technology
- Quality Assurance/Quality Control Technology
- Welding Engineering Technology
One-Year Technical Diplomas
- Industrial Electronics
- Industrial Maintenance Technician
- Machine Tool Technology
- Tool and Die Maintenance
In addition, the region’s proximity to universities such as Georgia Tech, Emory, Vanderbilt, Middle Tennessee State University, the University of Tennessee Knoxville, and the University of Alabama in Huntsville allows for an expansive approach to recruitment.
The collaborative spirit of the region helps startups like Branch Technology grow from an idea to a thriving advanced manufacturing business with international recognition.
Branch Technology revolutionized the construction industry with the world’s largest freeform 3-D printing robot designed to construct internal structures for buildings, and has joined several of the region’s other 3-D printing enterprises in what has developed into an emerging hub of additive manufacturing innovators.
Sites and Infrastructure
When it comes to site selection, the Chattanooga region boasts numerous low-cost utilities—including one of the country’s foremost smart grids—and an abundant water supply from the Tennessee River. And with the availability of electric power that meets the needs of any size manufacturer, selecting one of the region’s numerous sites, many of which are certified, is easier than ever.
Tax Advantages and Incentives
Manufacturing companies that choose the Chattanooga region benefit from not only a wide selection of strategically located sites and a well-prepared labor force but also tremendous potential cost savings. Property taxes are not collected on goods-in-process, inventoried finished goods, inventoried for-sale merchandise, goods in transit, or government-required pollution control equipment. As further incentive, tax abatements allow qualified businesses to substantially reduce their property tax burden. Foreign Trade Zone opportunities, state training, and infrastructure grants are also available throughout the region.
Medical device manufacturers are thriving in the Greater Chattanooga Region. Lake Region Medical recently invested millions to expand its Trenton, Georgia facility, which manufactures polymer components and assembles medical devices. The company has grown from 140 employees in 2009 to 360 employees today.
Top Employers in the Industry
|Shaw Industries||8,871||Carpet & flooring||Locations throughout region|
|Mohawk||5,800||Carpet & rugs||Locations throughout region|
|Whirlpool Corp.||2,000||Appliances||Cleveland, TN|
|Roper Corp.||1,800||Cooking products||LaFayette, GA|
|Astec Industries, Inc.||1,528||Asphalt & const. equip.||Chattanooga, TN|
|Wacker Polysilicon||600||Polysilicon||Charleston, TN|
|Miller Industries||560||Towing equipment||Ooltewah, TN|
|Schering-Plough Health Care||500||Pharmaceutical preparations||Cleveland, TN|
|Lake Region Medical||360||Machine tools||Trenton, GA|
|Duracell||350||Alkaline batteries||Cleveland, TN|
|Komatsu America Corp.||327||Construction machinery||Chattanooga, TN|
|Siemens Energy Services||275||Electrical parts||Fort Payne, AL|
|Tennessee Rand||229||Custom machinery||Chattanooga, TN|
|D&F Equipment Sales Inc.||175||Farm machinery & equip.||Crossville, AL|
|Valmont Industries||120||Iron & steel pipe||Jasper, TN|
|Fillauer Companies, Inc.||115||Prosthetic devices||Chattanooga, TN|
|Sherman & Reilly, Inc.||110||Fiber optic cable||Chattanooga, TN|
|Sofix Corp.||50||Chemicals/synthetic resins||Chattanooga, TN|
|Preferred Medical Products||40||Surgical instruments||Ducktown, TN|