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For Businesses Locating or Expanding in AR, LA, MS & TX: Six Entergy Experts Answer Six Key Questions

Posted July 3, 2019 in News

Bring us your most complex questions and your toughest challenges. We’re ready to take them on. Contact us early in your planning process and rely on us for confidential support at every decision point.  

To answer questions you’re likely to have about how Entergy can support your success, we’ve brought together experts from Entergy’s corporate team and our five operating companies.

Along with their answers, you’ll also find introductions to key assets in all of our operating company service areas with links to a wealth of information.

Entergy – Corporate
Senior Manager, Project & Technical Services, Bryan Hebert
1. How will Entergy deliver affordable, reliable energy that aligns with our business goals and commitments?

Entergy Arkansas
Senior Project Manager, Business Recruitment, Joe Bailey
2. Can you show us shovel-ready industrial sites?

Entergy Louisiana
Manager, New Business Development, Perry Pertuit
3. Will we have direct access to materials and markets?

Entergy Mississippi
Director, Business & Economic Development Ed Gardner, Jr., CEcD, EDFP
4. Will we find the skilled workforce we need in your region?

Entergy New Orleans
Project Manager, Business & Economic Development, Steve Molnar
5. How will the resources and dynamics of your business community help my company?

Entergy Texas
Director, Business & Economic Development, Steve Pilgrim
6. Can you meet our energy requirements now and in the future?

To learn more about our team and the services we provide new and existing customers, visit the Services page. Or if you are interested in viewing the available properties in our four-state territory, visit Buildings & Sites, our easy-to-use online commercial database & GIS mapping application.

1. How will Entergy deliver affordable, reliable energy that aligns with our business goals and commitments?

Entergy Economic Development - Bryan Herbert

Entergy Senior Manager, Project & Technical Services
Bryan Hebert

Entergy powers industry by partnering with our customers to provide low cost electricity and aggressively supporting their business growth opportunities.

At the core of our structure is the Corporate Project & Technical Services team, which joins forces with Entergy’s operating companies to maximize those opportunities for your new or expanding business.

Together we help you identify your ideal site; conduct preliminary engineering studies with no out-of-pocket costs; develop the best energy solution to meet your business goals; and provide affordable, reliable service for current and future operations.

How You Benefit from our Strategic Approach

When you send us an RFI, it’s immediately assigned to the Corporate & Technical Services team to identify your business goals, priorities and requirements.

We front-load the request with input from experts who manage the project from inception through completion. Members of Project & Technical Services, along with our OPCO counterparts, have highly technical and diverse utility backgrounds and credentials, such as Professional Engineer’s licensing, project management professional certification and geographic information system certification.

Energy Solutions Based on Your Business Priorities

We know from experience that the three most critical drivers in a company’s energy choices are: speed to market, cost and electric reliability. We work with you to weigh these priorities and energy solutions in the context of competitive advantage and profitability. The result is an electric service contract that aligns with your needs and drives your top-line profit.

Whatever your priorities, your business will benefit from these key assets that helped make our region home to the largest industrial base in the U.S. and a gateway to global markets:

 We’re working to power your success.

How Corporate Project & Technical Services Supports Customer Success

2. Can you show us shovel-ready industrial sites?

Entergy Arkansas
Senior Project Manager of Business Recruitment
Joe Bailey

Absolutely. Each Entergy service area has a certification program coordinated with state and local officials according to their regulations and resources. Entergy Arkansas developed our Select Site Certification program over 12 years ago. We recently relaunched the program with more rigorous criteria relevant to the demands of today’s industry and site location decision makers.

Under our new program, sites must satisfy a 50-point certification process and meet the shovel-ready due diligence requirements of prospective companies and site location consultants, including ownership and control clearances and preliminary evaluations related to environmental, utility and geotechnical conditions. We boil down many months of work into one easy-to-review three-ring binder, which our prospective customers find extremely helpful.

Select Site Success Story: In October 2018, a site at Little Rock port was the first to be certified under Entergy Arkansas’ new 50-point program. By May 2019, the Czech firearms manufacturer CZ-USA had chosen this site for their North American headquarters and production facility with plans to begin construction immediately.

The advance work to meet Entergy’s Select site certification expedited the processes of decision making, planning and construction, allowing CZ-USA to expect the plant to be online by March 2020. The project is a $90 million investment to build a 265,000 square-foot-facility on 73-acres. CZ-USA plans to hire approximately 600 workers in Little Rock over six years.

Learn more about why businesses are locating in Arkansas

Natural Resources

Arkansas is known as “The Natural State” for its scenic beauty from the Ouachita and Ozark Mountains, to the Arkansas Timberlands to the eastern lowlands along the Mississippi River and Arkansas Delta.

Abundant natural resources contribute to a high quality of life, along with the low cost of living. And for many industries, these natural resources drive their site selection. For example, Big River Steel chose to locate its $1.3 billion mill on a 1,300-acre site bordered on the east by the Mississippi River – which gave the company its name – and to the west by Interstate 55, an Entergy 500 kilovolt (kV) transmission line and a railroad operated by BNSF Railway.

Business-friendly Environment


View incentives in Arkansas

Arkansas is Prime for These Industries

Agribusiness, Chemical Products, Primary Metals, Wood and Paper Products, Automotive Manufacturing

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3. Will we have direct access to materials and markets?

Entergy Economic Development - Perry Pertuit

Entergy Louisiana Manager
New Business Development
Perry Pertuit

Yes, because Louisiana’s transportation access is second to none.

It’s home to the world’s largest port complex. The Port of South Louisiana handled more than 307 million short tons of cargo in 2017. More than 303 million short tons of cargo in 2018. More than 4,400 oceangoing vessels and 63,638 barges call the Port of South Louisiana annually, making it the top ranked in the country for export tonnage and total tonnage.

Louisiana is one of only two states in the nation where all six Class 1 railroads converge and includes more than 2,699 miles of track in freight service.

We have seven commercial service/primary airports, three with international service and six major interstate highways. All providing superior transportation infrastructure in Louisiana.

What We Mean by Location, Location, Location

Given this opportunity to talk about Louisiana’s assets for industry, I can’t help but call out so many statistics that prove a growing number of companies taking advantage of our location, location, location.

Of course, Louisiana is home to the largest industrial corridor in the US and location means being the nexus of major industrial transportation corridors and all that comes with it: among the lowest energy rates in the nation and the most reliable electricity in the nation – investing $4 billion over the next three years to strengthen the gird – and our future, clean large-scale energy fleets, a diverse fuel mix, low-priced natural gas, resilient power grid, low business operating costs, access to pipelines, extensive inbound and outbound logistics infrastructure and a well-trained workforce supported with the #1 rated workforce training in the country.

If Louisiana sounds like a desirable location for your company, take a look at 60 Certified Sites spanning tens of thousands of acres from a program that has propelled Louisiana to top-five status in national certified sites programs.

Strategic Location Success Stories: Since January 2016, Louisiana has attracted nearly 120 major economic development projects representing over 27,500 new permanent jobs and $30 billion in new capital investment for the state. We have many recent stories of companies that found direct access to materials and markets in Louisiana’s strategic location:

Learn more about why businesses are locating in Louisiana

Featured Properties & Louisiana Economic Development Certified Site Advantages 


View Incentives in Louisiana

Louisiana is Prime for These Industries:

Agribusiness, Metal Fabrication, Chemical Products, Automotive Manufacturing, Advanced Materials

Louisiana Builder and Developer Services

Entergy Louisiana’s New Construction Services team is dedicated to building and maintaining relationships with developers, builders, engineers and companies on their projects.
Related Blog: How Entergy Helps Builders and Developers Strengthen Our Communities

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Projects Driving Growth in South Louisiana click through to see maps of projected capital investment of $25 million and above

4. Will we find the workforce we need in our region?

Entergy Economic Development: Ed Gardner Jr.

Entergy Mississippi
Director of Business & Economic Development
Ed Gardner, Jr., CEcD, EDFP

At Entergy, we always want to answer this question affirmatively. That’s why we put considerable time and resources into developing the workforce in our communities. We know these skilled workers will become Entergy’s day-to-day partners in the delivery of affordable, dependable energy.

Entergy stays involved in workforce planning with state and local officials, community leaders and educational institutions and provides support to local workforce programs such as our current workforce development initiative, which is investing $5 million in community programs throughout Entergy’s service areas.

The newest part of this initiative is aimed at assisting all of Entergy Mississippi’s communities in becoming ACT Work Ready certified. The ACT Work Ready program is a nationally recognized work readiness program that provides quantifiable data on the existing skills base and potential pipeline of workers in a participating community.

The communities in Entergy Mississippi’s service territory recognized the importance of this workforce program early on, and currently 34 of our 45 counties are either participating or are in the process of certification.

In an effort to have all of our communities complete the program, Entergy has provided a grant to bring ACT to our state for two required ACT Boot Camps.  The first boot camp was held at the Northwest Community College campus in Senatobia, MS in May, where community leaders and workforce professionals learned valuable information on the successful implementation of the program.  We look forward to all 45 counties becoming ACT Work Ready certified.

Workforce Readiness Success Story: On a 900-acre site in Clinton, Mississippi, the German company Continental Tire broke ground in 2016 to build a commercial vehicle tire plant – a 5.2-million-square-foot, $1.45 billion investment.

Continental considered sites in 11 other states and two other countries during the site selection process – people and power were critical components of their search.  The project required new transmission and an on-site substation.  Entergy was able to meet their capacity needs and completed construction of all electric infrastructure ahead of schedule.

Additionally, the Mississippi Community College System played a key role in discussions with Continental, giving the company assurance that it would have the highly skilled manufacturing workforce it needed to operate the plant far into the future.

Three years later, the first building to open on the site was the training center, built with support from the Mississippi Development Authority. According to Continental’s announcement, they are now hiring for approximately 400 positions to begin production in 2020 and anticipate hiring 2,500 skilled workers by 2028.

Inside this new facility, Continental is working with Hinds Community College for recruitment and training, and has launched an internship program focusing on students enrolled in the college’s Industrial Maintenance Technology, Electrical Technology and Electronics Technology programs.

Our Entergy team has been working with Continental from the site selection process through energy planning and construction. Once they are in full production they will be one of our largest Mississippi customers. It’s exciting for us to see Continental training the workers who will soon become our partners in powering the new plant.

Learn more about why businesses are locating in Mississippi

Qualified Sites in Mississippi with at least 20 contiguous acres capable of supporting a minimum 50,000 square feet of building space, where development can begin within 180 days of the site’s acquisition by a prospective company.


View incentives in Mississippi

MS is Prime for These Industries

Primary Metals, Wood and Paper Products, Automotive Manufacturing, Distribution & Warehousing, Food Processing

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5. How will the resources and dynamics of your business community help my company?

Entergy New Orleans
Project Manager, Business & Economic Development
Steve Molnar
(504) 670-3635

A vibrant culture and port with access to markets and materials have long attracted business and industry to New Orleans, but here’s our new headline: Greater New Orleans is #1 in the USA for growth in technology and healthcare jobs. (SmartAsset & STAT, 2017)

For industries supporting or related to IT or healthcare, New Orleans has the synergy, resources and workforce you’re seeking.

Billions of dollars have recently been invested in New Orleans’ biotech corridor. The heart of this development is in a 1,500-acre area spanning downtown and Mid-City called the BioDistrict, anchored by impressive new structures including the BioInnovation Center, University Medical Center, Louisiana Cancer Research Center and the Southeast Louisiana Veterans Health Care System.

A U.S. News & World Report article, “New Orleans: Silicon Valley of the South?,” highlights the decision by DXC Technology, the Virginia-based global information technology giant, to build its latest “Digital Transformation Center” in New Orleans, creating 2,000 high-paying tech jobs.

The story reports that since 2006, the city has lured more than 45 high-tech startups or subsidiaries, creating more than 20,000 jobs. These companies include Accruent, a Texas-based provider of software-based inventory systems; GE Digital, a cloud-storage and systems software company; High Voltage Software, a video game developer; Smashing Boxes, a design/developer for web, mobile and connected devices; and iMerit, a provider of a real-time dynamic scheduling solutions.

Tech Hub Success Story: One of the best examples of the biotech boom and interface between technology and healthcare is the Ochsner Health System’s innovation lab called iO. Ochsner is Louisiana’s largest non-profit, academic, healthcare system with 40 affiliated hospitals and 100 health and urgent care centers. It founded iO in 2015 to reimagine and revolutionize the experience and delivery of healthcare. For example, iO is inventing ways to help patients manage chronic disease digitally and was selected by Apple to pilot EMR/Apple Health app integration. Learn about some of their projects on Apple’s healthcare website and CNBC.

Learn more about why businesses are locating in New Orleans


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New Orleans Dynamic and Diverse

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Case Study

TCI Plastics, a packaging, logistics and warehousing services provider

6. Can you meet our energy requirements now and in the future?

Entergy Economic Development: Steve Pilgrim

Entergy Texas
Director of Business & Economic Development
Steve Pilgrim

Yes, we can. We have made great strides in preparing for current and future growth, with projects such as the Western Region Economic Project, the Port Arthur Reliability Project and the construction of additional substations and transmission lines in strategic locations. This allows for not only business expansions, but for the addition of new industries in Southeast Texas.

Entergy Texas is in the midst of a multi-year capital investment plan valued at billions of dollars. Many projects included in the plan are complete, and over the next three years, we’re investing another $1.9 billion in infrastructure and power grid updates in Southeast Texas.

These investments in transmission, distribution, and generation include the addition of 115 miles of new transmission lines, 11 new substations, and a new combined cycle gas plant coming online in 2021.

Entergy is one of the few utilities in the country that has a Corporate Project and Technical Services Team embedded in our economic development efforts. Engineers work with the project team in designing an energy solution to meet a customer’s operational and business needs. This group also provides ongoing technical support to ensure reliability.

Entergy Texas operates with customer focus all the way through planning, construction and ongoing operations: from meeting your in-service dates on or ahead of schedule to partnering with you on achieving sustainability goals to planning for your future energy requirements.

Infrastructure Expansion Success Story: This February we broke ground on The Montgomery County Power Plant in Willis, Texas, that will cost $937 million to build. The highly efficient 993-megawatt combined cycle gas turbine operation will open in 2021 and be a source of low-cost, clean energy that keeps customer costs low and saves them a projected $1.7 billion dollars over 30 years.

Learn more about why businesses are locating in Texas


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Available Properties

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Texas is Prime for These Industries

Advanced Materials, Data Centers, Energy Services & Manufacturing, Metal Fabrication

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