The Colorado Springs Regional Economic Development Corp. on Thursday recognized nine companies that through expansion or relocation will add nearly 1,300 jobs to the region.
More than 200 people attended the event including city officials, mayoral candidates and business leaders.
EDC CEO and President Mike Kazmierski began his presentation by reminding everyone that unemployment in the Pikes Peak region is at the highest level it has ever been, and that the EDC still has a lot of work to do reverse this course.
“But the pipeline (of jobs coming into the community) is looking much better,” he said.
According to Kazmierski, the region was able to recruit every company that visited the area to investigate the possibility of moving, and that the EDC has brought in 70 percent of those companies historically.
Without divulging details, Kazmierski said that there have been 16 company visits recently, and he expects to announce 11 companies that will be moving to Colorado Springs in the next 90 days. This will result in an additional 600 jobs, he said.
Today’s luncheon was held to celebrate those companies that have already made the move, which Kazmierski said would add $35 million to the local economy based on an average salary of more than $37,000 for the newly created jobs.
The companies include Texas-based Fortune 500 Affiliated Computer Services Inc., which will hire 450 employees over the next year; Denver-based ARES Corp., which is expected to attract some intellectual talent to the area; Auxsol Inc. and Visual Network Systems, which will both be moving their headquarters to the Springs; and Everest University Online, which plans to add 600 jobs over the next four years.
The list is rounded out by NCT Technologies Group Inc., USAA, which is adding financial advice and banking service jobs in the Spings, Intelligent Software Solutions Inc., and the International Relations division of the U.S. Olympic Committee.
The luncheon ended with a standing ovation for the outgoing CEO of the Convention and Visitors Bureau, Terry Sullivan. Sullivan served in the position for 20 years, and will be the first Colorado Springs citizen inducted into the Colorado Tourism Hall of Fame next year.