NEWS RELEASE: Business Council
Business Councils wins data center economic development award
CHEYENNE, WYO. – The Wyoming Business Council recently received a "Top 5 Award of Excellence" in the data center category from national site selection magazine Expansion Solutions, punctuating an already successful year in terms of the state's emerging presence on digital industry landscape.
These awards recognize economic development organizations that have shown exceptional progress in the area of development with respect to business recruitment and retention efforts related to data centers.
The Business Council was recognized as an award winner because of its aggressive approach to recruiting data centers and others in the technology sector to the state, and the incentives that help the state's economic development agency attract them here.
"Expansion Solutions was pleased to announce that the Wyoming Business Council has received a Top Five Award of Excellence in the Data Center category for 2012," said Expansion Solutions Chief Executive Officer Jeff Cornett. "Wyoming's abundant energy supply and its cool, dry climate make it a perfect fit for technology companies seeking expansion opportunities."
Winning locations for this award were chosen because of the support system offered to businesses, as well as recent activity and potential growth that can be created in each area. Strategic locations, pro-business climates, investments made improving infrastructure and the availability of buildings and sites were among the top deciding factors in choosing these locations, according to Cornett. The awards will be listed in the magazine's January 2013 issue.
"The Business Council's data center incentive grant package has accelerated the growth of existing companies in the state, as well as established Wyoming as one of the nation's premier locations for explosive growth potential in the high-tech sector for data centers and other computing centers," said Expansion Solutions Editor and Chief Executive Officer Jeff Cornett.
Behind the lead of Governor Matt Mead who first stated his goal to recruit data centers during his campaign, Wyoming has aggressively pursued technology as a target industry that someday may be mentioned in the same breath as energy, agriculture, and tourism when talking about the state's signature industries – and it's paying off.
State incentives such as the Managed Data Center Cost Reduction Program, the data center permit exemption, the data center sales tax exemption, and data center infrastructure grant funds – used at the discretion of Governor Mead to incent data centers to Wyoming – have helped Wyoming land major economic development projects such as the $112 million Microsoft data center scheduled for construction next year.
"The incentives we've created for this industry are built by careful design," said Bob Jensen, Chief Executive Officer of the Wyoming Business Council. "These successes are only possible because of the close working partnerships developed during the past six years with the Wyoming State Legislature, the governor and local economic development organizations throughout the state, as well as our relationship building efforts with technology companies and site selectors."
However, it's not just incentives that are raising Wyoming's flag within the digital, technology and data center industries, it's the state's assets such as cool climate, robust fiber, low-cost and redundant electricity and access to available shovel-ready sites that lower the total cost of operation for digital business that set Wyoming apart in this highly competitive market.
"This is great to know we are being recognized by a well respected national site selection magazine for our work to bring data centers to Wyoming," said Jensen. "The special part about this is we are just getting started."
In addition to the full-scale data center Microsoft announced in April, the global technology company has again made headlines in Wyoming with its recent commitment to build locate an $8 million research and development pilot project in Cheyenne termed the Data Plant, also scheduled for construction in 2013.
Other homegrown data centers also are thriving in Wyoming, including Echo Star, Green House Data and T3Media in Cheyenne, Ptolemy Data Systems in Sheridan, and Mountain West Telephone in Casper, among others throughout the state.
The mission of the Business Council is to facilitate the economic growth of Wyoming. The Business Council, a state government agency, concentrates its efforts on providing assistance for existing Wyoming companies and start-ups, helping communities meet their development and diversification needs, and recruiting new firms and industries targeted to complement the state's assets. For more information, please visit www.wyomingbusiness.org.