Frankfort, Ky. – As Governor Steve Beshear prepares to leave office, another state economic development record has just been broken.
For a second consecutive year, Kentucky will record an all-time high in new private capital investment by new and expanding companies, with more than $4.5 billion announced since January.
This surpasses last year’s record of $3.7 billion, with additional growth expected by the end of December.
Kentucky gained national attention earlier this year when it won the 2014 Governor’s Cup from Site Selection magazine as the state with the highest level of economic development investment per capita.
Site Selection magazine announced last month that Kentucky placed third nationally in its 2015 Business Climate Ranking for a succession of expanding businesses, new facility openings, thousands of jobs added and dedicated efforts by economic developers statewide. Kentucky leapt from eighth place last year – the largest increase of any state in the 2015 ranking – to achieve its highest position ever.
“Having endured the worst recession since the Great Depression, to have come back as strongly as Kentucky has is truly remarkable,” Gov. Beshear said. “I am grateful to all of the companies – nationally and globally – that have put their faith in Kentucky, and I look forward to watching their continued growth.”
Assisting existing industries expand was a particular area of emphasis for Gov. Beshear. As a result of his efforts, 84 percent of all new investment and 71 percent of new jobs came from expansions of existing industries.
This year’s growth caps off a phenomenal economic growth record during Gov. Beshear’s tenure, with nearly 2,400 announcements totaling nearly $21 billion in investments and more than 111,000 new or retained full-time jobs announced since January 2008. Much of the growth can be attributed to the Governor’s Incentives for a New Kentucky legislation, passed by the Kentucky General Assembly, which streamlined economic development incentive programs.
“By partnering with our local economic development teams and lawmakers, we not only sped Kentucky’s recovery from the recession, but also laid the foundation for strengthening our economic capacity long term,” Gov. Beshear said.