Wednesday March 3, 2004
This morning, officials from Citi Cards, part of Citigroup, Inc., announced they have chosen Louisville as a site for expansion of its credit cards operations which would add up to 1,600 new jobs to the community, making it one of the region's largest job-creation announcements in the past five years.
These new jobs are in addition to the existing 500 full-time and part-time employees, who currently work at Citi Card's facility off Blankenbaker Parkway in Eastern Louisville. These operations became part of Citi Cards as a result of its acquisition of the Sears credit card business last fall.
The announcement came during a news conference at its current facility. To accommodate the expansion, Citi Cards will build a new 170,000-square-foot facility on 27 acres at Blankenbaker Station Business Park. Construction is expected to start within the next 30 days.
Kentucky Governor Ernie Fletcher made the announcement. He was joined by Gregg Morton, senior vice president, senior corporate officer for the Commonwealth of Kentucky and site president of the Citigroup Florence, Ky. location, Louisville Mayor Jerry Abramson, Jeffersontown Mayor Clay Foreman and Joe Reagan, COO of Greater Louisville Inc., the Metro Chamber of Commerce.
"Economic development in the Commonwealth is vital to the well-being of all Kentuckians, and I am pleased that Citigroup has decided to expand its facility in Louisville," Fletcher said. "This expansion will deliver much-needed jobs to the state and our administration will continue to promote economic opportunity and prosperity in Kentucky.
Since October, GLI, Louisville Metro Government and the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development have worked closely with Citigroup officials to encourage expansion in Louisville.
"Our company has been extremely pleased with our accomplishments in recruiting talented, dedicated employees in Kentucky," Morton said. "We have seen huge business growth and development in our Northern Kentucky operations site, which led us to search for the same success in the Louisville community. We look forward to partnering with Metro Louisville in job creation, employee development and community investment. Both state and local officials have been most accommodating through this process. We look forward to becoming a premier employer in the Louisville region and across the state."
Under the plan, the company would invest more than $35.8 million in the project, which would create more than $46.8 million in new payroll. The company will announce information on new employment opportunities in May.
"Louisville is the economic engine of Kentucky and Citigroup just revved it up a notch or two," Abramson said. "Citigroup's selection shows that Louisville has what it takes to compete nationally for jobs and economic expansion."
The economic impact of this project will reverberate across the region, according to a report from the University of Louisville. It is estimated that the 2,100 new and retained jobs will lead to more than 4,300 other indirect new jobs with $133 million in new annual payroll in the 23-county region.
"This is great economic development news for the region," said GLI President and CEO Steve Higdon. "It is further proof that the strong partnership that exists between the business community, Louisville Metro and state government is paying off for everyone."