Challenge

Alcan Packaging, a multi-plant manufacturing firm that supplies cigarette hard packs, was awarded the print and paper converting portion shed by RJ Reynolds Tobacco located in the Winston-Salem area. Alcan, headquartered in Peachtree, GA, needed to locate its new manufacturing operation in an area where most of the former RJ Reynolds’ packaging employees would be willing to work.

Strategy

Alcan decided to focus on built-to-suit options in industrial areas or industrial parks for “shovel ready sites.” Don Moss and his colleagues were brought on the project to conduct the ground search and negotiate state and local incentives. Moss and his colleagues advised Alcan to expand the geography to a 1.5-hour radius of Winston-Salem to include many of the rural counties just outside of the immediate Winston-Salem area, Southside, VA, and Northern Piedmont Triad Counties, as most state incentives encourage job creation in less developed rural communities. In addition, these communities normally have more aggressive local incentive packages.

Services

All counties within this radius were requested to submit their best 20-30 acre site, preferably within available industrial parks, to construct a 240,000 square foot facility with expansion to 280,000 square feet. The team then presented the best sites from these communities to Alcan. There were seven counties in both North Carolina and Virginia selected for a tour within the 1.5-hour radius surrounding Winston-Salem. Don Moss and his colleagues and Alcan officials visited all seven in order to understand the physical aspects of each site as well as any unique attributes about the site and support services available from each community. The team provided an analysis to narrow the search to two finalist communities (Reidsville, North Carolina and Martinsville, Virginia). The site in Reidsville ended up being superior in terms of lot configuration, topography, highway access, grading expense, and long-term expansion. In addition, Reidsville offered a closer proximity to the RJ Reynolds’ packaging facility.

Results

Alcan officials located their plant in Reidsville, North Carolina. The team successfully negotiated an incentive package which included a 27 acre donated site, a grading allowance, cash from each the state’s discretionary funds plus a job training allowance.