FRANKFORT, Ky.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Today, Gov. Andy Beshear joined leadership from the city of Louisville and Consumer Cellular to officially break ground on the company’s new customer support center. The $15.5 million investment is Consumer Cellular’s first operation in Kentucky and will create 486 full-time jobs.
“This is an extremely exciting day for both Consumer Cellular and the commonwealth,” Gov. Beshear said. “Today’s groundbreaking is a testament to the company and their leaders’ commitment to our state’s talented workforce. Days like today are a reminder of why Kentucky is continuing its unprecedented economic momentum. I look forward to following the company’s growth here in the commonwealth.”
Consumer Cellular will open its first Kentucky operation in an existing building on Triton Boulevard in Louisville. The new customer support center will allow the company to better serve customers on a national scale. Jobs created through the project include management and call center support positions, with company leaders expecting to add more than 400 of the new roles in 2022.
“I appreciate Gov. Beshear and the leadership with the City of Louisville for their generous welcome and for their help in making this facility opening possible,” said Consumer Cellular Chairman and CEO Ed Evans. “We are excited to be part of this great community by bringing good, high-paying jobs to Kentuckians. We also look forward to being good community partners as well. Kentucky has a low cost of living and a talented workforce. We look forward to a bright future in the Bluegrass State.”
Founded in 1995, Oregon-based Consumer Cellular is a postpaid mobile virtual network operator that offers cellphones, low-cost, no-contract cellular plans and accessories focused on users over age 50. The company operates exclusively in the U.S. and employs more than 2,400 people across four locations in Arizona and Oregon.
“Louisville's economic momentum is full-speed ahead with nearly 1,600 new jobs and $470 million of investment since the start of 2022,” said Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer. “I’m excited to welcome Consumer Cellular to Louisville with an investment of more than $15.5 million and nearly 500 full-time jobs. Louisville’s strong reputation in business services and our internationally acclaimed health and aging innovation sector make us the ideal location for Consumer Cellular to serve their customers. Thank you, Consumer Cellular, for your investment in Louisville!”
Consumer Cellular’s investment and planned job creation furthers recent economic momentum in the commonwealth, as the state builds back stronger from the effects of the pandemic.
“Greater Louisville Inc. was proud to be part of this exciting project from the early stages and work closely with Consumer Cellular, Governor Beshear’s administration, and Louisville Forward to make this major investment a reality,” said Sarah Davasher-Wisdom, president and CEO of Greater Louisville Inc., the Metro Chamber of Commerce. “We are thrilled to continue our partnership with Consumer Cellular as we welcome them into the Greater Louisville region and help meet their workforce and business growth needs.”
Gov. Beshear recently announced that on Jan. 28, S&P Global Ratings revised Kentucky’s financial outlook to positive from stable and affirmed its “A-” credit rating. S&P cited a reduced reliance on one-time items to balance the budget and a higher balance in the state’s rainy-day fund as primary factors influencing the change.
That follows a 2021 during which the commonwealth shattered every economic development record in the books. Private-sector new-location and expansion announcements included a record $11.2 billion in total planned investment and commitments to create a record 18,000-plus full-time jobs across the coming years. Kentucky’s average incentivized hourly wage for projects statewide in 2021 was $24 before benefits, a 9.4% increase over the previous year.
In September, Gov. Beshear, Ford Motor Co. Executive Chair Bill Ford, CEO Jim Farley and Dong-Seob Jee, president of SK Innovation’s battery business, announced the single largest economic development project in the history of the commonwealth, celebrating a transformative $5.8 billion investment that will create 5,000 jobs and places Kentucky at the forefront of the automotive industry’s future.
Kentucky also saw an all-time, record-setting budget surplus in fiscal year 2021 and enters 2022 with an estimated $1.9 billion more than budgeted.
In addition, Kentucky recently placed seventh overall in Site Selection magazine’s annual Business Climate Rankings. The commonwealth ranked third nationally in the 2020 projects per capita ranking and fifth in the 2021 Prosperity Cup rankings, positioning the state among the national leaders for business climate.
To encourage investment and job growth in the community, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) in December 2021 preliminarily approved a performance-based incentive agreement with the company under the Kentucky Business Investment program.
By meeting its annual targets over the agreement term, the company can be eligible to keep a portion of the new tax revenue it generates. The company may claim eligible incentives against its income tax liability and/or wage assessments.
In addition, Consumer Cellular can receive resources from Kentucky’s workforce service providers. Those include no-cost recruitment and job placement services, reduced-cost customized training and job-training incentives.
For more information on Consumer Cellular, visit ConsumerCellular.com.
A detailed community profile for Jefferson County can be viewed here.
Information on Kentucky’s economic development efforts and programs is available at CED.ky.gov. Fans of the Cabinet for Economic Development can also join the discussion at facebook.com/CEDkygov, on Twitter @CEDkygov, Instagram @CEDkygov and LinkedIn.
Read about other key updates, actions and information from Gov. Beshear and his administration at governor.ky.gov, kycovid19.ky.gov and the Governor’s official social media accounts Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
For images, visit here.