OCT. 7, 2016
Governor Rauner and Jim Schultz, CEO of Intersect Illinois, announced Thursday on Facebook Live that a statewide coalition of economic development organizations are partnering to establish a comprehensive business expansion and retention program, CORE.
State touts new business marketing program
Oct. 6, 2016
The Rauner administration today announced a new data-driven push to encourage businesses to stay and expand here,
and while it looks like the main focus will be downstate, it could bring jobs to a state that needs them everywhere.
Likening the effort to "a modern-age concierge service" for business, the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity and Intersect Illinois, Gov. Bruce Rauner's new public-private economic development corporation, announced a new program called Core, which stands for Creating Opportunities for Retention and Expansion.
Core will use data analytics—specifically proprietary software Synchronist—to provide businesses with information on Illinois resources and trends.
For instance, for an automaker in search of cheaper ways to get its vehicles to market, Core could provide data pointing up Illinois' intermodal strengths, Intersect Illinois CEO Jim Schultz told me. "It's taking data analytics and trying to make them more predictive."
Beyond that, the move "is as much about building relationships as recruiting," he added. Companies "need to know" that the state is aware of their concerns and may be in a position to help. "I have made a push for this state to become the red carpet state as opposed to the red tape state."
So far, Core involves more than 40 companies and local units of government, including Commonwealth Edison and Nicor Gas, the Greater Sterling Economic Development Corp. and the Grundy County Economic Development Council.
World Business Chicago, the city's economic development unit, has not been involved, officials said. But Choose DuPage is participating, and Cook County has expressed interest.
The formal announcement came in a Facebook Live appearance by Rauner and Schultz.