Thomas & Betts planned expansion into East Memphis to add 75 jobs and over $20M in investment

With a move in the works from their old corporate headquarters in Southwind, Thomas & Betts is looking to invest $20.7 million and add 75 employees when they transfer to ServiceMaster’s former headquarters at 860 Ridge Lake Blvd. in East Memphis.

The investment and extra manpower hinges on the approval of a tax abatement incentive. The application calls for a 15-year payment in lieu of taxes (PILOT). If approved, it will defray $3,142,573 of the costs. The project will also help the company retain 523 current jobs.

“Thomas & Betts adding jobs to our community’s corporate landscape is significant. Thomas & Betts will have a signature presence in the east Memphis area. We so appreciate their investment to Memphis and Shelby County,” Shelby County Mayor Mark H. Luttrell, Jr. said.

The Economic Development Growth Engine (EDGE) of Memphis and Shelby Co. will consider the application on Wednesday, July 19.

“I want to thank ABB and Thomas & Betts for expanding in Memphis and for creating new jobs in Shelby County,” said Bob Rolfe, Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development Commissioner. “The manufacturing sector in Tennessee has gained over 46,000 jobs since 2011. I appreciate Thomas & Betts for continuing the momentum of the manufacturing sector for our state, and I look forward to our continued partnership.”

In 2012, ABB purchased the components manufacturer. Thomas & Betts is a division of ABB’s Electrification Products Division.

“Memphis and Thomas & Betts have been partners for over a quarter century,” Franklin Sullivan, lead division manager, United States, ABB Electrification Products Division, said in a release. “We have found it to be a perfect place to do business, with a hard-working, highly educated workforce. We’re pleased to be beginning a new chapter in our history here.”

When the expansion is complete, the manufacturer of electrical components will have 598 employees on its payroll.

According to the company, the base salary for its employees will be average to $86,788, excluding benefits.

The PILOT expansion will allow the company to merge research and development from around the country into the Ridge Lake address. It will also permit them to consolidate parts of their transportation and logistics operations in the area.

Investment in the project includes $12.9 million for new furniture, fixtures and computer equipment for the new facility. There will also be $7.5 million devoted to renovating the Ridge Lake location.

EDGE officials have estimated $45 million in local tax revenues will flow in during the PILOT.

As a requirement of the PILOT, Thomas & Betts must spend at least $2.3 million on certified minority and women-owned businesses in Memphis and Shelby Co.

“By choosing the city of Memphis as the place it believes it can best grow, Thomas & Betts is adding to the momentum we’re experiencing of late,” Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland said. “With strong amenities and a great quality of life, Memphis is a great city for companies looking for a promising future.”

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