JCB Labs chooses Wichita for production expansion
(Wichita, KS - September, 2011) -- JCB Laboratories, a sterile products compounding pharmacy, plans to more than triple production and double employment at its Wichita location. According to Brian Williamson, PharmD, President and CEO of JCB Labs, the company has had aggressive growth the last few years and was looking at where to expand its production facility.
“We feel as if Kansas is becoming a national player in the biomedical industry,” Williamson said. “Having a centrally located company is important due to our national reach. Even though we had options to move our location out of Wichita, we felt like staying put was the right choice. We are excited about our growth and bringing new jobs and opportunities to Wichita. The GWEDC has been a great resource and we are thankful for their help.”
The company currently employs nine people and has plans to add 15 new jobs over three years at an average wage of more than $50,000. JCB Labs also plans to invest $700,000 in new equipment and renovation of their production facility located at 7335 W 33rd Street in Wichita.
As a custom compounding pharmaceutical company, JCB prepares sterile products for individual patients, physicians, veterinarians, surgery centers, hospitals and clinics throughout the nation. The lab specializes in preparing individualized products not available from a manufacturer. The company also prepares products for clinical research trials. Founded in Wichita in 2003, JCB Labs provides overnight service of its customized products to anywhere in the nation.
“We are so pleased to be able to support a local business that began here and is choosing to grow here,” said Dave Unruh, Chairman of the Sedgwick County Commission. “We hear all the time that it’s small business generating jobs, and this is great story of one of our own proving that point.”
Mayor Carl Brewer, said, “Small companies have the same decisions and choices that large companies do, and I applaud our focus on helping all of our existing businesses. As JCB Labs chooses to more than double its workforce here, we reap the benefits, especially in the biotech industry.”
The Greater Wichita Economic Development Coalition (GWEDC) worked with Sedgwick County and the City of Wichita to offer forgivable loans to secure the investment and jobs for Wichita. The Wichita City Council and Board of County Commissioners will be voting on the incentive package in coming weeks.
GWEDC Interim President Suzie Ahlstrand said, “Our Coalition and staff work closely with existing companies that sell products outside the community therefore bringing money into our community. JCB Labs has a great story to tell, and we hope to help them choose to continue growing here.”
FlightSafety Launches Major Wichita Expansion
Orlando – The world’s premier aviation training organization, FlightSafety International, will significantly expand its Wichita presence. The company announced plans for new buildings and expanded existing facilities at the National Business Aviation Association Annual Meeting and Convention in Orlando.
FlightSafety International expects to add up to 250 additional jobs in the area and expand its five facilities by at least 200,000 square feet. Current employment for FlightSafety International in the Wichita area is more than 450 employees.
“This significant investment in people and facilities is based on the needs and requirements of our customers,” said Bruce Whitman, President & CEO, FlightSafety International. “We appreciate the support of the State of Kansas and the Greater Wichita Economic Development Coalition, and are proud to be an integral part of the Wichita aviation community since 1971.”
Kansas Department of Commerce Secretary David Kerr said, “It’s always exciting when a leading aviation company like FlightSafety International chooses to expand its operations in Kansas. We appreciate FlightSafety International’s continued commitment to our state and our workers, and we look forward to working with the company for years to come.”
The expansion will include a new 85,000 square foot facility on Hoover Road to increase the company’s existing support of Cessna currently offered at 1951 Airport Road and 1851 Airport Road. FlightSafety’s Cessna Maintenance Training Center located at 1962 Midfield Road will be replaced by a new facility. FlightSafety will also build a new Hawker Beechcraft Aircraft Maintenance Training Center on Greenwich Road in addition to expanding the Hawker Beechcraft Pilot Center at 9720 East Central Avenue. The company’s Learjet Training Center located at Two Learjet Way will also be expanded.
“FlightSafety is a world leader in the aviation industry and this announcement shows its commitment to its customers and long-term growth in Wichita,” said Sedgwick County Chairman Tom Winters. “In this case, FlightSafety chose to expand in Wichita since many pilots and technicians recognize and appreciate the advantages of training in proximity to our world class business jet manufacturers.”
More than 75,000 pilots, technicians and other aviation professionals train at FlightSafety facilities throughout the world each year. The company also designs and manufactures full flight simulators for civil and military aircraft programs and operates the world’s largest fleet of advanced full flight simulators at 40 training locations worldwide.
“We thank this great aviation company for their investment in our community,” said Mayor Carl Brewer. “Wichita is the ‘Air Capital of the World’ and FlightSafety trains today’s aviation professionals. The economic impact of this announcement has an added bonus beyond the significant capital growth and jobs because of the number of visiting pilots who train here in Wichita.”
Last year more than 12,000 pilots and other professionals trained in Wichita at FlightSafety facilities, for an average of 230 people per week. According to company officials, that number could double with this expansion. When pilots come to Wichita to train at FlightSafety facilities, a typical stay of one to two weeks per training session has a significant economic impact on the hotel and restaurant industry.
Bruce Whitman, President & CEO of FlightSafety International and representatives from the Kansas Department of Commerce and the Greater Wichita Economic Development Coalition (GWEDC) made the joint announcement at NBAA.
The Department of Commerce and GWEDC, working closely with the City of Wichita and Sedgwick County, negotiated a package of incentives to secure the capital investment and additional jobs for Wichita and Kansas. State incentives include IMPACT funds and tax credits.
The Greater Wichita Economic Development Coalition is the regional public/private partnership managed by the Wichita Metro Chamber of Commerce and charged with creating and executing the region’s business recruitment, retention and expansion plans.
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Greater Wichita Economic Development Coalition
350 W. Douglas
Wichita, KS 67202-2970
P: (316) 268-1133