[VIDEO] The Amazing Amazon Story: From dead malls to vibrant worksites WHACC Networking Luncheon Jan 2018

The Amazing Amazon Story: Sold-out Crowd learns what Amazon will mean for the tri-cities

At our January 17 luncheon, WHACC members and guests learned about the phenomenal public and private collaboration that resulting in snagging 3,000 jobs and the prestige of a great brand for our region.

First and foremost on everyone’s mind was what the two Amazon distribution centers (in the former Euclid Square and Randall Malls) will mean in terms of overall economic impact for the region.

Guest Speakers included:
Bill Koehler, Chief Executive Officer, Team NEO
Ted Carter, Chief Economic Development and Business Officer, Cuyahoga County

Following their presentations, the speakers were joined by North Randall Mayor David Smith and Euclid Mayor Kirsten Holzheimer Gail, to respond to questions.

Here a very notable quotes from our speakers.

Bill Koehler, Chief Executive Officer, Team NEO
“It takes a village … and we all had a place in it”
“In northeast Ohio, we have the ability to connect groups, and leverage the best – so companies looking at our region have a great experience.”
“This was the largest northeast Ohio project in 15 years!  And conservatively, it will have a $82 million payroll.”
“We made this happen in an extremely compressed time line – only 3 months from start to finish!”
“Abatements … and site negotiations were very complicated … but everyone was committed to making it happen.”
“We actually showed Amazon we wanted them here…. all the mayors and councils were committed that they would not be an obstacle.”
“Amazon wants to be a good long-term financial partner in the formerly under-utilized assets “

Theodore “Ted” Carter, Chief Economic Development and Business Officer, Cuyahoga County
“I’ve been doing this for 20 years, but this project represents the best community, public sector leadership, teamwork and indomitable spirit I’ve ever seen.”
“The hard work is only just beginning.”
“Our city compares with any city in America  – opportunity is enormous.  Amazon is hopefully just the first big example.”
“We’re repositioning Cuyahoga County as an economic hub.  Other great activities last year changing the narrative are IBM Watson Healthcare HQ, ABB and Plug and Play – a Silicon Valley accelerator.”
“We’re excited about ‘SkillUp’ – where we’ll reimburse companies to help your employees get new skills that lead to wage increases.  Check it out!”
“We’re working now with the mayors and following up with Amazon to understand their supply chain , get them the talent and find out what they need.  More to Come!!”

Mayors David Smith (North Randall)  and  Kirsten Holzheimer Gail (Euclid) joined a very lively q&a session and added:
“In 2005, everyone counted us out – said we should cease to exist.  But Adversity builds character, and we were the sleeping giant.  I love coming to work now!”  David Smith
“We got rid of blight, and now are ready for new jobs and investment as the city of Euclid redefines itself.  Couldn’t be a better New Year’s present.”  Kirsten Holzheimer Gail.

Registration is now open here for our March 21 meeting “The New Altered Reality:  Medical Marijuana Opportunities and Insights.”


About WHACC Publisher

The Warrensville Heights Area Chamber of Commerce works to promote, enhance, and foster the growth of business in the area communities of Highland Hills, North Randall and Warrensville Heights, Ohio. Visit whacc.org to subscribe, get involved, or join. Do you have news, updates, or opportunities you would like to share? We’re looking to our members to submit world-class content for our print newsletters, email newsletters, and social media channels. Please submit your business articles, tips, and resources to news@whacc.org