Home » Kentucky wins Site Selection Governors Cup for a second year in a row

Kentucky wins Site Selection Governors Cup for a second year in a row

Atlanta – Texas and Kentucky have won the 2015 Site Selection Governors Cups. This is the third year Site Selection recognizes the state with the most qualifying new and expanded facilities per capita, which Kentucky claims for its capital investment activity in 2015. Texas wins for having the most qualified projects of any state.

The 62-year-old Atlanta-based magazine has awarded the Governor’s Cup annually since 1988 to the U.S. state with the most new and expanded corporate facilities as tracked by the Conway Projects Database.

The Lone Star State’s 702-project finish for 2015 is up from its 689-project, first place finish last year but is comfortably ahead of the runners-up in the traditional Governor’s Cup facilities race: Ohio is second with 517, followed by Illinois (413), North Carolina (300) and Kentucky (285). In the per capita (per 1 million population) contest, Kentucky’s 285 projects won the day, followed by Nebraska (118), Ohio (517), Illinois (413) and Kansas (93).

“These are the same winning states in their respective categories as last year, and both are under new leadership in the governor’s office,” says Mark Arend, editor in chief of Site Selection. “Both governors tell me they are very proud of the economic development professionals in their states who do the hard work year in and year out of attracting new businesses and retaining existing ones. And both are committed to maintaining and building on the capital investment success they currently enjoy.”

Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin is bringing his business world experience to bear as he meets with existing and prospective capital investors. “That experience already has given me the ability to connect with some of our business community, and that has given me some hope and excitement that as sharp as we have been, we will be sharper still in the years to come.”

Site Selection’s Conway Projects Database focuses on new corporate facility projects with significant impact, including headquarters, manufacturing plants, R&D operations and logistics sites, among others. It does not track retail and government projects, or schools and hospitals. New facilities and expansions included in the analyses must meet at least one of three criteria: (a) involve a capital investment of at least US$1 million, (b) create at least 20 new jobs or (c) add at least 20,000 sq. ft. (1,858 sq. m.) of new floor area.

The March 2016 issue of Site Selection also features state rankings by region. For 2015, the regional leaders according to the traditional, total new projects measure are Pennsylvania (Northeast); Ohio (East North Central); Nebraska (West North Central); North Carolina (South Atlantic); Texas (South Central); Arizona (Mountain); and California (Pacific). Per capita regional leaders are Pennsylvania (Northeast); Ohio (East North Central); Nebraska (West North Central); North Carolina (South Atlantic); Kentucky (South Central); Nevada (Mountain) and Oregon (Pacific).

Overall Top 10 States 2015 Governor’s Cup Projects Overall Top 10 States 2015 Governor’s Cup Per Capita
Rank State Count Rank State Count
1 Texas 702 1 Kentucky 285
2 Ohio 517 2 Nebraska 118
3 Illinois 413 3 Ohio 517
4 North Carolina 300 4 Illinois 413
5 Kentucky 285 5 Kansas 93
6 Michigan 217 6 Louisiana 148
7 Georgia 211 7 North Carolina 300
8 Pennsylvania 202 8 Iowa 92
9 Virginia 167 9 South Dakota 24
10 Indiana 166 10 Alabama 127


Top U.S. Micropolitans New and Expanded Facilities in 2015 Top 10 Metro Areas: Tier One New and Expanded Facilities in 2015 (Metros with population over 1 million)
Rank Micropolitan Totals Rank Metro Totals
1 Findlay, Ohio 26 1 Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, Ill.-Ind.-Wis. 376
2 Cullman, Ala. 18 2 Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, Texas 284
3 Wooster, Ohio 14 3 Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, Texas 201
4 Tupelo, Miss. 13 4 Cincinnati, Ohio-Ky.-Ind. 169
T5 Shelby, N.C. 11 5 Columbus, Ohio 108
T5 Batavia, N.Y. 11 6 Detroit-Warren-Dearborn, Mich. 95
7 Frankfort, Ky. 9 7 Louisville/Jefferson Cnty., Ky.-Ind. 92
T8 Scottsboro, Ala. 8 8 Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell, Ga. 89
T8 Valley, Ala. 8 9 Charlotte-Concord-Gastonia, N.C.-S.C. 77
T10 Danville, Ky. 7 10 Kansas City, Mo.-Kan. 73
T10 Maryville, Mo. 7
T10 Somerset, Ky. 7


Top 10 Metro Areas: Tier Two New and Expanded Facilities in 2015 (Metros with population 200,000 to 1 million) Top 10 Metro Areas: Tier Three New and Expanded Facilities in 2015 (Metros with population less than 200,000)
Rank Metro Count Rank Metro Count
1 Omaha-Council Bluffs, Neb.-Iowa 55 1 Sioux City, Iowa-Neb.-S.D. 24
2 Dayton, Ohio 43 2 Bowling Green, Ky. 18
3 Tulsa, Okla. 39 T3 Gainesville, Ga. 15
4 Durham-Chapel Hill, N.C. 38 T3 Janesville-Beloit, Wis. 15
5 Baton Rouge, La. 36 5 Altoona, Pa. 12
6 Greensboro-High Point, N.C. 31 T6 Auburn-Opelika, Ala. 10
7 Lincoln, Neb. 28 T6 Lima, Ohio 10
8 Lexington-Fayette, Ky. 26 8 Decatur, Ill. 9
9 Akron, Ohio 23 T9 Burlington, N.C. 8
10 Hickory-Lenoir-Morganton, N.C. 22 T9 Decatur, Ala.