Hoekstra Transportation is growing. After 25 years at its current location in St. Anne, Illinois, the company is moving to Kankakee’s Eastgate Industrial Park. “We’re going from 15,000 square feet to about 32,000 square feet,” said company President Steve Hoekstra. The move will allow the company to better serve its employees and customer and position for future expansion.
The Economic Alliance works dilligently to report in a timely manner on things like local business expansion, new business development, new and enhanced development incentives, economic news and other items of interest to our community investors and investor prospects.
CSL Behring has purchased the neighboring 74-acre shuttered Bunge Edible Oil property along Illinois Route 50 in Bourbonnais Township. The acquisition, a move made to build capacity for future expansion of the global bioscience firm in Illinois, means the company will own 138 prime acres at the southwest section of Armour Road and Illinois Route 50. Bunge ceased edible oil production at the end of 2016.
Established in 2013, Manteno-based gluten-free, non-GMO and organic pizza maker Urban Farmer has 50 employees and has expanded to two shifts, five days a week. It also plans another expansion at the 10-acre site within the next year. And, in December, the company purchased the Peotone-based Teresa’s Pizza, a low-cost frozen pizza found in many Midwest grocery store.
For the first time, Kankakee County will be represented at the premier U.S. foreign direct investment summit SelectUSA in Washington, D.C. Hosted by the U.S. Department of Commerce International Trade Administration from June 18 to 20, the event is expected to draw more than 2,600 attendees and 1,100 vetted global investors.
With steady corporate expansion, Kankakee County consistently led Illinois metropolitan areas in associated job growth in the first quarter of this year. Among small Illinois metros, the community has led three of the past four years in job as well as technology growth, according to Milken Institute. To better connect the Greater Chicago region with the wealth of employment and training opportunities throughout Kankakee County, the community has relaunched WorkKankakee.org with improved content and navigation for students, parents and educators as well as current job seekers.
IKO Industries Kankakee is expanding as the groundwork for a 15,000 square foot addition has begun. The space will accommodate a new production line, requiring the hire of 10 to 15 new employees.
Nucor Corporation has purchased the Alabama Metal Industries plant in Bourbonnais and hired back between 65 and 70 of the employees who were slated to be laid off.
A report issued January 23 by leading location advisory, economic incentive and corporate real estate services firm Site Selection Group places the Kankakee Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) – which shares boundaries with Kankakee County – among the nation’s top 10 metros positioned for growth of the millennial demographic. Using data provided by Claritas, Dallas-based SSG’s “The Best Metro Areas for a Talent Pipeline” forecasts that the Kankakee MSA will experience 6.1% growth of the millennial population – classified by the firm as the post-college population under 35 – from 2016 to 2021.
Leading food innovator FutureCeuticals Inc. announced last week a $2 million, 14,700 square foot expansion of its headquarters operation in the Greater Chicago community of Momence, Illinois. According to the company, which holds more than 50 patents for functional food ingredients, the additional space will house its 50 to 60 member sales, customer service and marketing force. Another 20 to 30 employees are expected to be hired within the next 12 to 24 months.
In terms of growth in the local industrial, institutional, military, utility, multifamily residential, infrastructure and commercial markets, 2016 projects announcements in Kankakee County in 2016 are projected to yield $120,700,000 in capital investment, 699,290 square feel of new space and 904 new jobs.