MindTree Limited, a global IT and product engineering company, has selected Gainesville as the site for its United States expansion, bringing 400 new jobs over the next five years and making a $2.925 million capital investment in the heart of Gainesville.
The Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce and Council for Economic Outreach have been working to recruit MindTree since December 2011 when the company first made contact with the University of Florida College of Engineering.
"We were looking for a location that could offer our clients a pool of enthusiastic people in a community and State that would be supportive of our efforts to grow the company," said Scott Staples, president, Americas, MindTree Limited. "Gainesville and the state of Florida offered us the perfect combination of business climate and resources and close proximity to one of the region's leading engineering schools. We are thrilled to bring MindTree's high-tech expertise and unique corporate culture to Florida, and we are looking forward to opening our facility later this year."
MindTree is co-headquartered in Warren, New Jersey and in Bangalore, India.
"This expansion is great news for both Gainesville and for the entire state of Florida," said Governor Rick Scott. "MindTree's choice to expand in our state confirms that our state is doing the right things to attract innovative businesses like those in the IT sector. I look forward to signing the legislation that will put my Job Creation and Economic Development Agenda in place and make Florida even more attractive to companies looking to expand in a business-friendly state like ours."
The Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce and the Council for Economic Outreach worked with local and state partners including representatives from the University of Florida, Santa Fe College, the Alachua County School Board and Enterprise Florida, Inc. to show MindTree leaders that Gainesville fits MindTree's culture.
"Gainesville is home to the Florida's top research university, the University of Florida, which fosters the development of innovative businesses seeking to change the world," said Michael Gallagher, chairman of the Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce. "MindTree is that kind of company, and we are thrilled to welcome its U.S. Development Center to our community. I believe the ecosystem formed between MindTree, the University of Florida and the Gainesville community will be a successful model others will follow."
After renovations by Gainesville architects Ponikvar and Associates, MindTree will breathe new life into the Ayers Building at Innovation Square, placing the company at the creative heart of the "Live, Work, Play" community growing along SW 2nd Ave., and giving it close access to the University of Florida's engineering and computer science students.
"The University of Florida and our College of Engineering were key factors in MindTree's decision to locate in Gainesville, and we look forward to making significant contributions to this endeavor as it moves ahead," said UF President Bernie Machen. "This shows the importance of having a leading national research university in the mix when it comes to economic development. We have the expertise, resources and talent to provide businesses like MindTree with qualified employees and access to cutting-edge research."
Located between the university and downtown, the 2nd Avenue corridor is one of the Gainesville Community Redevelopment Agency's designated enterprise zones, making it the perfect area for the high-tech jobs that MindTree will bring.
"MindTree recognized that Gainesville is a leader in innovation-based industry and an emerging epicenter of Creative Class job growth," said Mayor Craig Lowe. "They rightly saw the Innovation District, with its proximity to both the University of Florida and downtown Gainesville, as the perfect place to locate their business. I am proud to welcome them to our community."
MindTree officials considered site locations in South Carolina and Alabama but ultimately selected Gainesville for the area's innovative workforce talent, community spirit and unparalleled quality of life. Staples said that the company will depend on Gainesville's sense of community for the project to succeed, adding that the world would be watching.
"On behalf of Alachua County and the Board of County Commissioners, I'd like to welcome MindTree to our community," said Paula DeLaney, Alachua County Board of County Commissioners chair. "This type of industry will greatly benefit from our abundant talent and high quality of life in Alachua County. We stand ready to assist MindTree and look forward to helping them grow and thrive."