Category Archives: Jobs/JAX Economy

Regency Centers to Acquire Equity One

Jacksonville based Regency Centers Corp. just announced a deal to acquire another major shopping center owner, Equity One, Inc. Regency currently owns 307 properties across the country, and the acquisition/merger with Equity One (122 properties) will result in a combined company with 429 properties across the US, with a total market value of $15.6 Billion.  The deal is expected to take place in the first to second quarter of 2017. The company will retain the Regency Centers name and the headquarters will remain in Jacksonville. The merger will be done through an exchange of stock.

Mark Basch with the Daily Record covered the story.

Topgolf and IKEA Updates

Topgolf opened for business on October 28th, after much anticipation and excitement. The venue is 65,000 SF and located near the St. Johns Town Center, just west (and visible) from I-295.

Ikea broke ground yesterday, with a planned opening in 2017. The store will be 290,000 SF and located on 25 acres, with 950 parking spaces. Ikea plans to hire 250 people once the store opens. This will be the 4th Ikea in Florida, and the first in Northeast Florida.

Both of these developments are great signs for the city, demonstrating that the city is now “on the radar” for major retailers who previously overlooked Jacksonville. Topgolf and Ikea chose sites close to the St. Johns Town Center, which is viewed by outsiders as the prime retail hub of the city.

Strong Job Growth Continues

Metro JAX’ 5-county employment has added some 24,900 jobs in the 12 months’ ended in August 2016.  That’s a 3.8% growth ranks 3rd amongst its peers in the Southeast, just behind Savannah at 4.0% and still well behind Orlando at 4.4%, but well ahead of Tampa, Atlanta, Charlotte, Charleston, and Miami – and substantially better than the nation at about 2.0%.  According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, every employment category had gains in JAX except one (Information, which lost 400 jobs or down 4.3%); increases were widely dispersed, with the biggest gains being in Construction (+12.1%), Leisure/Hospitality (+5.9%) and Education and Health Services (+5.2%).

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IKEA Development Details Released

IKEA plans to invest nearly $36M into the planned Jacksonville location. According to a recent article, the opening is expected to be in the fall of 2017 and the store plans on hiring 250 people to staff the location. The permits show a store size of 294,203 SF with 950 parking spaces and an expected development cost of $22.7M. IKEA paid $13M for the 25 acres back in May.

Karen Brune Mathis with the Daily Record covered the story.

Project Vero- Another Amazon DC?

An unnamed company is seeking incentives totaling some $8.3M from the state and city for the proposed construction of a 1 million square foot distribution center that could be built at city owned Cecil Commerce Center in Jacksonville’s Westside submarket.

The project sounds very similar to the Amazon distribution center that was announced earlier this year, which was being referred to as Project Rex when they were at this stage of the process. There is a strong possibility that the company behind Project Vero could be Amazon, who has built more than one distribution center in the same market before. In fact, it is somewhat common for Amazon to build one distribution center to pick, pack and ship smaller items, and another to process larger items, such as furniture, sporting equipment, TV’s and other larger consumer products.

The Cecil Commerce location would be about 23 miles south of the location that was already announced, which is at 12900 Pecan Park Road, right off I-295 and just south of the Airport.

Karen Brune Mathis with the Daily Record covered the story.

Another 1M SF Distribution Center in the Works

A 1M SF distribution center appears to be in the works at Cecil Commerce Center on Jacksonville’s Westside. Similar to the Amazon distribution center that was recently announced, at this point the company has not being identified. What we do know is that the proposed facility would serve as a packaging distribution center for a national company and would employ about 1,000 people. Some people are hypothesizing that the building could be an additional Amazon facility…. We will have to wait and see.

Karen Brune Mathis with the Daily Record covers the story.

EverBank Buyout Confirmed

EverBank Financial Corp. announced on Monday (8/8) that the Jacksonville HQ’d bank would be bought by TIAA for $2.5B, or $19.50 per share. For several weeks there has been much talk and speculation surrounding the potential sale. TIAA, a financial services firm that was formed in 1918 by the Carnegie Foundation, also has a banking arm, which will soon be combined with EverBank. The company has stated that Jacksonville will serve as the headquarters for the combined bank, however further details regarding the new operations are unknown, including the new name of the combined entities. Additionally, many locals wonder if the Jaguars stadium will remain EverBank Field, or if it will be re-branded.

Mark Basch with the Daily Record covered the story.

More Jobs, Jobs, Jobs

Citibank announced hiring of 800 new jobs in JAX; that’s after 500 announced last summer that they have already filled at their offices in South JAX.  Roger Bull has the announcement here for The Florida Times-Union.

It’s Official- Amazon DC Coming to Jax

After much speculation, Amazon has made it official- they will be opening a 800,000 SF + distribution/fulfillment center in Jacksonville, which will create more than 1,500 full time jobs. The site, which was sold by Colliers International, is at Duval and Pecan Park roads, visible from I-295. For several months, there has been speculation surrounding a project being referred to as “Project Rex” which was seeking city and state incentives, and described a company that sounded very much like Amazon, without actually naming them.

Karen Brune Mathis with The Daily Record covered the story.

Mercedes-Benz USA Expanding in Jax

Mercedes-Benz USA is relocating an engineering services division from a town in New Jersey to Jacksonville. Mercedes already has a presence in town- leasing around 500,000 SF at the International Trade Port near Jacksonville International Airport. The relocation will cost Mercedes a total capital investment of $2.1M; city and state incentives totaled $448,200, and the new division will result in 50 new jobs.

Derek Gilliam with the Jacksonville Business Journal covered the story.