Apple Deal Wins Economic Development Deal of the Year

Business-Facilities-AwardBusiness Facilities Magazine recently awarded their top prize, the Gold Award for Economic Development Deal of the Year, to Arizona’s team that brought Apple to the state. The winning team – including GPEC, the Arizona Commerce Authority, Salt River Project, DMB, Maricopa County and the City of Mesa – was selected for their collaborative efforts to attract Apple’s manufacturing operations at Eastmark in Mesa, Arizona.

Late last year in 2013, a coalition of governments, corporations and economic development leaders worked together to pave the way for Apple to start up manufacturing operations at Eastmark. Their successful efforts demonstrate Arizona’s commitment to solidifying the state’s employment base and growing our economy. The team worked together to address complex issues with locating manufacturing operations of this scale to Arizona and ultimately made the winning business case for the move to Eastmark.

Since the deal closed just a few months ago, Apple’s team has been hard at work transforming the building into a giant high-tech manufacturing facility. Their investment could total more than $1.5 billion, creating hundreds of new jobs.

Eastmark’s unique vision for a mixed use community centered on high wage employment, education, innovation, healthcare and lifestyle is becoming a reality with each new company that makes its home there. Grand Canyon University, BASIS, and Pathfinder Academy have already selected Eastmark for their schools. Its strategic location, near Phoenix Mesa Gateway Airport, ASU Polytechnic, and completed transportation links to the Phoenix Metro area and air access, make Eastmark an ideal location for major employers who need local and national access to markets.

Our work in business attraction, retention and expansion has been a priority for DMB and for Eastmark. We are continuing to collaborate with regional and local economic development leaders, and we are working directly with corporations to bring high quality employers to the East Valley to help fulfill our vision for a vibrant economic core at Eastmark.

Business Facilities Magazine has announced the winners of its 2013 Economic Development Deal of the Year competition.

A huge solar panel plant in Mesa, AZ that did not survive the slump in global panel prices will be transformed into an advanced manufacturing facility for tech giant Apple in a $1.5-billion project that has earned BF’s 2013 Economic Development Deal of the Year Gold Award.

The winner of our top award emerged from a collaborative effort between Greater Phoenix Economic Council (GPEC), the Arizona Commerce Authority (ACA), DMB , Salt River Project (SRP), Maricopa County and the City of Mesa.

This highly cooperative team worked with Apple on their purchase of the former First Solar facility, a 1.2-million-square-foot building located on 83 acres near Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport. The Apple manufacturing facility will create 700 jobs with average salaries of $45,000 as well as 1,300 construction jobs, creating an overall economic impact for the region of $1.33 billion.

“Our Deal of the Year Gold Award winner is a game-changer for Apple and Arizona,” said BF Editor in Chief Jack Rogers. “Arizona’s team moved quickly to put together an attractive package that put the Mesa site front and center as Apple considered locations for its renewed commitment to U.S. manufacturing.”
“This deal puts Greater Phoenix on the map as a leading high-tech hub,” Rogers added.

Jill Hegardt

Vice President

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