New Braunfels (TX) – Automotive-Supplier Recruitment Strategy
ChallengeToyota’s decision to locate its new truck plant in San Antonio is the most significant economic development project in Texas in several years. The fact that no automotive cluster exists in central Texas means that the opportunity for attracting new supplier companies to serve Toyota will be great. While the opportunity is great, the lagging economy means that the level of competition among central Texas communities for new investment and jobs will be higher than ever. TIP was hired to identify the actions that New Braunfels must take in order to attract Toyota and other automotive suppliers.
ApproachThe consulting team took site visits to the Toyota facility in Princeton, Indiana and surrounding automotive suppliers. TIP conducted interviews with automotive suppliers and economic development professionals in the Indiana area who have been successful in attracting suppliers to their communities. The consulting team also utilized its experience in working with the Japanese industry over the past 20 years to guide their findings.
OutcomeThe consulting team determined that New Braunfels is at a competitive advantage relative to many communities in Central Texas based on its location on IH35, proximity to San Antonio, ability to draw upon a regional labor force, new training facility, variety of real estate options (existing buildings and available greenfield sites), and economic development tools. TIP provided city leaders with a profile of Toyota’s proposed operations, an assessment of the community’s competitive position, as well as targets, strategies, and best practices for marketing. Primary strategies included developing the New Braunfels “product” (sites and business park), enhancing the business climate and image of the community, and conducting a targeted campaign for attracting automotive suppliers, with an emphasis on Toyota-related opportunities. New Braunfels has begun implementing the recommended strategies and has already experienced success in attracting the interest of Toyota suppliers.
Photo credit cobra libre