While cities across the Triad do compete to attract new businesses and corporations, economic developers say they are pushing a concept of regional promotion more than ever before.
Loren Hill, president of the High Point Economic Development Corporation explained, “The city boundaries matter to us who are in the local jurisdictions, but they don’t matter to a company. They’re looking for a regional workforce. They’re looking for the regional assets that will make their company do well here.”
Greensboro, Winston-Salem and High Point leaders created an extensive brochure in a variety of languages that highlights the regional assets the three cities offer. The numbers are much more impressive as a total, they said.
“We had a company in from California last week. I invited Loren Hill from High Point and Bob Leak from Winston-Salem. We talk about our population at 1.7 million total. We talk about our 16 colleges and universities across the region. More than 60,000 college students,” said Dan Lynch, President of the Greensboro Economic Development Alliance.
“Companies aren’t interested in geopolitical boundaries. They want the best workforce, the best site or the best building,” Lynch insisted.
Bob Leak with Winston Salem Business, Inc. agreed. “I think what’s new is that we are taking a much more active role in marketing ourselves. We’ve all been part of the Piedmont Triad 12-county region for a long time, but now we’re focusing on the urban core,” he said.
The three sometimes travel together to represent the region and often talk to international companies about possible expansion.
They pointed out, wherever a company ends up within the region is good for the overall tax base and total number of employment opportunities.
“What we hope to do is just simply introduce people who aren’t familiar with our area to the benefits of doing business here,” said Leak.