Here is today's summary of economic development news, a free service of the Economic Development Partnership of Alabama, representing Alabama's private sector investment in economic development. If you enjoy NewsFlash, thank an
Startups can apply for updated Alabama Launchpad through Sept. 14
Now in its 11th year, Alabama Launchpad allows early-stage companies to pitch their concepts to judges, compete for funding and receive mentoring while staying in-state.
How will it be different? Organizers said Alabama Launchpad will move from a five-month to a two-month schedule. In addition, entrants will be judged along two tracks - concept stage entrepreneurs launching businesses and seed stage businesses accelerating growth.
Study: HudsonAlpha biotech campus worth $1.85B to Alabama economy
Huntsville's HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology has meant more than $1.85 billion to Alabama's economy in the past decade, according to an economic study released today. In the past two years alone, the study says, the economic impact has topped $500 million.
HudsonAlpha is a life sciences campus
housing genetic researchers, educators and associated companies. It employs more than 750 people and indirectly supports another 600 jobs. It direct and indirect payroll impact has been estimated at $634 million.
The study was prepared by the Center for Management & Economic Research at the University of Alabama in Huntsville and includes data from 2006-2016. It researched the impact of the nonprofit HudsonAlpha institute and its more than 30 resident associate companies. Employment at the institute and its associate companies increased 19 percent last year.
Sylacauga's Fleetwood Metal expanding by 70 jobs over the next year
Fleetwood Metal Industries has begun another expansion and will be hiring up to 70 more employees through the end of next year.
Talladega County Economic Development Authority Executive Director Calvin Miller said the company, a Honda supplier, is planning a new 60,000 square foot plant in the city's industrial district. This building is within sight of the existing plant.
"This is a lot of opportunities for people in Sylacauga to go to work," Miller said.
HealthSouth announces new name, logo
HealthSouth Corp. will have a new name next year.
The health care provider announced Monday it will change its name to Encompass Health Corp. effective Jan. 2. The corporate name change also will include a change to the ticker on the
New York Stock Exchange
from HLS to EHC.
Beginning in the first quarter of 2018, all business segments will begin transitioning to the Encompass Health name. The full rollout is expected to be completed by 2019. During this time, the company will work with its joint venture partners to determine the timing and nature of name and logo updates for jointly owned assets.
Inland Seafood to expand in Ensley, hire 100
Atlanta-based Inland Seafood is expanding its operation in Ensley and will create more than 100 new jobs.
The company plans to hire nearly 50 people in phase one of the expansion, according to the Birmingham mayor's office, and hire 50 more once the expansion is complete.
Inland Seafood provides various value-added fish, seafood, meat and poultry products for sale to restaurants, grocery stores and other customers.
Don't Miss Alabama's Premier Innovation Event on Aug. 23!
The keynote speaker is Thomas L. Friedman, whose books, columns and speeches have established him as one of the true thought leaders on innovation and its impact on the global economy. His presentation is guaranteed to be insightful and provocative.
Following his address, there will be networking events that will include live entertainment, food and drink. This year's Innovation Awards winners will be celebrated in a fresh, new format.
MORE ABOUT THE EVENT AND BUY TICKETS!
SAC'S "INNOVATION ZONE" SHOWCASES THE FUTURE OF AUTOMOTIVE MANUFACTURING
BIRMINGHAM, AL - The future of the automotive industry factory floor comes into focus at the inaugural "Innovation Zone" at this year's Southern Automotive Conference (SAC), to be held in Birmingham October 4-6. The SAC has arguably become the most important conference in the North American automotive manufacturing industry, attracting more than 1,000 attendees, including the South's leading automakers, their suppliers and exhibitors from around the globe.
This year's conference theme of "Driving Progress" is a commitment by the SAC to explore the future of the fast-changing auto industry and what it means to manufacturers, their suppliers and their human resources. The Innovation Zone (IZ) is an exhibit area dedicated to the exploration of current and future technologies shaping the manufacturing world. This experiential exhibit features early-stage as well as commercialized technologies that are the new potential disruptors in the automotive industry. It will include hi-tech developments in vehicle intelligence, robotics, virtual reality, 3-D printing, GPS tracking, sensor technology, and many others.
"We believe the Innovation Zone is a key component of the Southern Automotive Conference this year," said Ron Davis, president of the Alabama Automotive Manufacturers Association (AAMA), the host organization for the 2017 SAC. "The Southern automotive sector has become the fastest growing in the United States - with billions of dollars in plant investment from automakers and their suppliers. It's critical that our attendees understand where the future of the industry is going in terms of innovation and technology, because that's where their businesses have to go. We invite any and all innovative automotive tech vendors and suppliers to be a part of the Innovation Zone experience."
"The automotive industry is marching toward 'Industry 4.0,' which entails all kinds of new technology ranging from intelligent and connected controls, to asset tracking and knowledge, robotics, cobots, 3-D manufacturing, and real-time advanced data analytics," said William Wappler, president and CEO of Surgere, an industry-leading Ohio-based exhibitor and sponsor of the Innovation Zone. "Creating the Innovation Zone was a way for us to collect the 'i4.0' tools, people and latest ideas together in the same place. It's going to be powerful."
Davis said interested exhibitors can apply to be part of the Innovation Zone on the
About the SAC:
Southern Automotive Conference
is presented jointly each year by the automotive manufacturing associations of Alabama (AAMA), Georgia (GAMA), Mississippi (MAMA) and Tennessee (TAMA). The South Carolina Automotive Council (SCAC) and Southern Automotive Women's Forum (SAWF) are affiliate members of SAC. The Alabama Automotive Manufacturing Association is this year's SAC host organization.