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The purpose of this study is to provide an analytical look at Auglaize County to determine its strengths and better guide the County’s business attraction and recruiting efforts.
This Cluster Study and Economic Base Analysis of Auglaize County and its neighboring counties (Study Region) indicates that the County/Region is well positioned to take advantage of an economic recovery that is predicted to occur in 2011. This analysis would also indicate that the County/Region is positioned to economically hold its own even if no discernible recovery takes place.
The strengths of the County/Region include:
The County/Region has a significant quality workforce. This factor is statistically supported by a high percentage of the population that has attained at least a high school diploma – twice the national average, a wide range of skill types, and a more than adequate number of people in the workforce pool
There exists a highly skilled workforce within the industries that are considered growth sectors for the County/Region.
The County/Region and State of Ohio are well positioned geographically and enjoy excellent transportation and infrastructure advantages. Auglaize County is located at the intersection of Interstate 75 and US 33 and also has significant rail resources.
Many of the growth sectors and supply chain relationship already exist. There is a strong base of existing firms within the County/Region with significant growth potential.
In particular, the automotive and related industries which many predict to rebound in the next few years, is dependent on the region for workforce, facilities and access to markets.
These and other factors leads us to believe that the County/Region does not need to reinvent itself as many other communities will that do not have the characteristics of Auglaize County and the Study Region. This is a distinct advantage when competing in the business attraction process.
The Study identifies 30 industries in the Study Region (by NAICS) that have favorable index rating of 4 and 5 (5 being the most favorable index and -5 being the least favorable).
Although all of the 30 industries should be considered “targets” for recruitment the Study would indicate that the most desirable targeted industry segments should include:
Motor Vehicle Manufacturing ( NAICS 3361)
Glass and Glass Product Manufacturing (3272)
Food Processing (NAICS 3114,3112,3115,3111) includes dairy, grain milling, fruit and vegetable
Another factor that must be considered as a positive for Auglaize in particular is the strong workforce whose skills are transferable to industries that might not yet have a strong presence in Auglaize.
Auglaize and the Study Region have a deep pool of talent in the Skilled Production areas that would appeal to many industries including alternative energy, food technology, high tech and skill sensitive industries.
Auglaize and the Study Region enjoys a certain regional brainpower which provides the basis for innovation which in turn will help attract those industries that understand the importance of a sophisticated workforce.
In short, Auglaize and the Study Region are competitively well positioned to retain its existing industry base and will be a compelling alternative to those companies who are considering new community to locate their business.