MACHESNEY PARK, Ill. - June 15, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn was joined by executives of Forte Automation Systems, Inc. today to announce the manufacturer’s plans to expand operations in Illinois. As part of Governor Quinn’s efforts to grow business, the company chose to expand in Illinois and expects to create more than 70 Illinois jobs in the coming years.
Despite being aggressively pursued by neighboring states, Forte decided to expand in the Rockford area. In addition to the new jobs, around 57 individuals will be retained. According to the Illinois Department of Employment Security, May was the ninth straight month of declining unemployment in Illinois.
“Tech leaders like Forte are choosing Illinois over other states because we have the infrastructure and skilled workforce to support their growth,” Governor Quinn said. “The high-tech industry is key to creating the jobs of tomorrow and boosting our economy.”
“We have built a strong workforce of skilled employees here in Illinois, and we are proud to call the Rockford area home,” said Toby Henderson, Forte Automation Systems CEO. “Expanding outside of Illinois and relocating our team was not something we wanted to do. We look forward to continuing our partnership with the state of Illinois as we work together to support this area’s economy.”
Forte will invest around $7.1 million over the next couple of years for the expansion, and the state will invest $2.15 million over 10 years to leverage the job creation. The state’s targeted investment package, administered by the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO), will consist of Economic Development for a Growing Economy (EDGE) corporate income tax credits, which are based on job creation, and Employer Training Investment Program (ETIP) job training funds that will help enhance the skills of its workforce. If the company does not meet its job creation targets and commitments, they will no longer be eligible for the tax credits.
Forte Automation Systems, Inc. provides the latest automation technology to manufacturing, pharmaceutical and consumer product companies, with a focus on medical devices. In 2011, Forte added 45 highly-skilled jobs and has already created 10 additional high-tech jobs so far this year.
Under Governor Quinn's leadership, DCEO has worked diligently to identify and aggressively court companies like Forte that are looking expand their reach. The Governor will continue to build on this success by playing a key role in marketing Illinois' world-class attributes abroad and personally meeting with companies to recruit them to Illinois.