A state incentive package valued at $6.3 million over 10 years, coupled with skilled-workforce availability and the prospect of closer proximity to a larger portion of its customers, has compelled Lafarge North America to move its northern Virginia headquarters to a location near Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport.
Joining Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn in mid-April to announce the move, Lafarge NA’s John Stull, CEO for U.S. Cement and Aggregate & Concrete operations, noted, “As a leader in the building materials industry, it is important to us to be close to our operations and customers to help provide them with sustainable construction solutions.
“The location around O’Hare and along the Interstate 294 corridor is ideal because it is central to our U.S. footprint. We also appreciate Illinois’ commitment to sustainable infrastructure projects, which will bring long-lasting value to your citizens.”
Of Lafarge NA’s approximately 4,500 U.S. employees, 300 are in Illinois facilities, including the Joppa cement and South Chicago slag mills. Gov. Quinn personally recruited company officials to Illinois and met with senior leadership of Paris-based Lafarge Group during a March economic trade mission to Europe.
Lafarge NA will invest about $10 million to move from a Reston, Va., office near Dulles International Airport, opening its new headquarters in fall 2012 with a staff of about 90—projected to climb above 100 over the next few years. Illinois’ targeted business investment package will support job training for workers and economic development. The $6.3 million state money hinges on the company meeting investment and jobs numbers.