"New Jersey is Changing," Lt. Gov. Guadagno Tells I.con-The Industrial Conference

Top Quote Annual National Event Attracts Nearly 400 Industrial Real Estate Professionals to the State. End Quote
  • Jersey City, NJ (1888PressRelease) June 22, 2012 - "New Jersey is changing. What we have done in the past two years is change the perceptions of New Jersey as a place to do business," Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno told close to 400 industrial real estate professionals from all over North America at I.con: The Industrial Conference. Presented by NAIOP, the commercial real estate development association, in partnership with NAIOP New Jersey and the Society of Industrial and Office Realtors (SIOR), the annual two-day event took place at the Hyatt Regency Jersey City.

    In his opening remarks, Thomas J. Bisacquino, president and CEO of NAIOP, noted the event's proximity to and "extraordinary view" of Lower Manhattan. "We will take advantage of this opportunity with an outstanding program that will discuss the important trends facing all of us," he said.

    Guadagno, whose responsibilities include heading New Jersey's economic development efforts, seconded the motion on "the outstanding view," quickly mentioning, however, that "the commercial rents on the New Jersey side of the river are one-third of those on the other side of the river."

    The bottom line, Guadagno said, is that "states aren't innovators - people are innovators, and it is worth noting that what we have done in the past two years in terms of new programs, incentive and initiatives has resulted in the fact that in the past month, New Jersey created more new jobs than any other state."

    Prior to her signature finale of giving out her cell phone number and promising to return every call - this time to a national rather than a state or regional audience - Guadagno discussed New Jersey's advantages, ranging from its transportation infrastructure, to its port facilities, state-of-the-art warehouse space and its strength in such innovative industries as biotech.

    "Transportation/logistics/warehouse and distribution facilities continue to be targeted as a priority growth sector in Governor Chris Christie's state strategic plan," she concluded. "There is considerable potential for growth here."

    "Fuel, labor, and logistics costs and speed to market are driving factors in New Jersey's effort to attract business," according to Michael G. McGuinness, CEO of NAIOP New Jersey. "For costs in general, especially fuel costs, the logistics industry has become more collaborative, with competitors now using the same warehouses, and even the same trucks.

    "Other trends impacting New Jersey include 're-shoring' - the return of manufacturing to our shores as markets and economic conditions abroad change," McGuinness said. "Suppliers have also become more specific on their building requirements, regarding building features and the duration and size of the spaces they occupy."

    Other topics on the two-day agenda included "The Intersection of Trade and Real Estate," "Industrial to Data Centers - A Hot Trend," "Understanding and Navigating State Incentives," "What are the Channel Masters Thinking About the Supply Chain," "Investment Strategies: Public vs. Private," "The Art of the Deal," and a Panama Canal presentation offered by Bisacquino. Events included port and data center tours.

    "We would like to offer a special thanks to the I.con Planning Committee and its Chair, Anne Strauss-Wieder, for this program," Bisacquino said.

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