Stories of Technology, Innovation, & Entrepreneurship in the Southeast

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November 07, 2023 | Tom Ballard

Southeast Shoutouts | Alabama invests in its timber industry

Two North Carolina communities see investments that will add jobs.

From Huntsville, AL:

Alabama Governor Kay Ivey has awarded the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology $383,268 through the Alabama Department of Economic & Community Affairs to provide those working in Alabama’s timber industry a low-cost genomic tool to identify and verify the type of tree planted and growing in stands throughout the state.

Alabama’s forestry sector accounts for more than $27 billion a year and more than 120,000 jobs, according to the Economic Development Partnership of Alabama. The state has more than 23 million acres of timberland, the third largest commercial forestland base in the lower 48 states, and adds around two percent of tree volume year-over-year.

From Asheboro, NC:

Toyota has announced plans to invest an additional $8 billion in its electric battery manufacturing site in Randolph County, bringing 3,000 more jobs to North Carolina.

According to an article in WRAL TechWire, Toyota’s announcement is the biggest investment by a foreign-owned company in state history. Toyota announced in 2021 that the company would build an electric vehicle battery plant at the Greensboro-Randolph Megasite, an 1,825 acre property in Randolph County — a $1.3 billion commitment with more than 1,700 jobs. With the latest announcement, Toyota’s facility will now employ 5,000 people with a total estimated investment of nearly $14 billion.

From Orlando, FL:

Innventure LLC, an enterprise growth engine, and Learn CW Investment Corporation, a publicly traded special purpose acquisition company, have announced that they have entered into a binding business combination agreement that will result in Innventure becoming a public company.

Innventure creates companies that transform the future. It founds, funds, operates, and rapidly scales companies in strategic collaboration with multinational corporations to commercialize breakthrough technology solutions. Innventure comprises experienced entrepreneur-operators who leverage a systematic, quantitative company-building approach to help mitigate many of the risks inherent in building and scaling high-growth ventures.

From Wilson, NC:

Life sciences manufacturing is getting a $30 million boost in Eastern North Carolina, thanks to a state budget appropriation to develop a biologics training center in Wilson.

The center will provide customized training and education for life sciences manufacturing across the region. Wilson is home to a large manufacturing presence, including global companies Merck, Fresenius Kabi and ABEC. The center will be housed at Wilson Community College.


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