In 2015, Waukesha County Executive Paul Farrow convened an Economic Development Strategy Workgroup, comprised of business representatives, workforce development organizations, education and local government. They worked together to determine the needs of businesses in the region and how an economic development organization would address those needs.
The Workgroup produced the Business Growth Strategy for Waukesha County, setting four strategic outcomes:
- To create a central point of contact for businesses looking to expand in or relocate to Waukesha County
- A business outreach strategy to identify the needs of businesses seeking to expand in or relocate to Waukesha County.
- A strategy to identify Waukesha County business workforce needs and connect to available workforce development resources.
- A strategy to develop a collaborative fund to increase financial tools to businesses in Waukesha County and sustain the Economic Development Organization.
In May of 2016, Waukesha County, the Waukesha County Business Alliance, the City of Waukesha and the University of Wisconsin-Small Business Development Center signed a partnership agreement. Under the Agreement, the Alliance created the Waukesha County Center for Growth, Inc. to serve as that central point of contact for businesses.
The services the Center for Growth provides for businesses include seeking building space, regulatory approvals, financing, labor force or other needs to accommodate growth. We are meeting with companies on a daily basis, conducting business retention and expansion visits and assisting these companies to address their needs.
We will be consulting with small businesses looking to grow, working with manufacturers and large service firms on expansion plans and further developing a strong relationship with Waukesha County’s municipalities.
The Center for Growth has already had some great success thus far. Immucor Inc., a medical manufacturer based out of Norcross, Ga., has agreed to expand its facility in Brookfield, adding 64 new employees. W.M. Sprinkman, a manufacturer that work with the food and beverage and brewing industry, has also relocated to Waukesha, and hopes to add up to 20 more employees to their workforce.
We’re looking forward to working with business, communities and municipalities to create a vibrant economy where businesses and citizens thrive.
By: Tim Casey, Director of Economic Development, Waukesha County Center for Growth, Inc.
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