By Dan Sewell
CINCINNATI: The General Electric Co. plans to build a new U.S. global operations center in the Cincinnati area, bringing an expected 1,400 jobs to Southwest Ohio.
The announcement was made Thursday by JobsOhio, the state’s private job-creation agency.
Fairfield, Conn.-based GE describes the center as a “shared services” site that’s part of the sprawling company’s efforts to streamline operations. The Cincinnati area center will be one of five such centers around the world that will combine functions such as finance and information technology in the same place, GE said.
The jobs for the center are described by officials as well-paid, white-collar professional positions.
JobsOhio spokesman Matt Englehart said the size and expected impact of the center is comparable to landing a big corporation’s headquarters.
“Our long and successful history with the state will be mutually beneficial,” Shane Fitzsimons, senior vice president for GE global operations, said in a statement.
JobsOhio officials said the state was competing with a number of other potential locations. It has offered economic development assistance to GE and will recommend state incentives, with details to be made public later, Englehart said.
“We’re thrilled with the confidence this move shows in the people of Ohio,” Gov. John Kasich said in a statement.
GE expects to break ground this summer and have the site fully running by 2017. The Cincinnati Enquirer reported Thursday that three sites, one in the northern Cincinnati suburb of Mason in Warren County, are considered front-runners for the location. GE could use a temporary site until the new center is ready.
GE makes a variety of products, such as aircraft engines, household appliances and CT scanners. It also offers financial services, employing some 307,000 people globally, with annual revenue of $146 billion. GE’s aviation division is based in the northern Cincinnati suburb of Evendale. GE already has some 15,000 employees total at various sites in Ohio.
GE last year opened a new Electrical Power Integrated Systems Center in Dayton it said would employ 150 to 200 researchers over the next few years.
GE’s CEO, Jeff Immelt, is a Cincinnati native.
GE shares were trading Thursday morning at $26.07, up 12 cents.
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