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Bossier City has a fiery business sector and has leveraged itself in the past few years as a force to be reckoned with. Growth is the word used to best describe the parish as the population continues to increase and business is booming! NLEP’s Regional Data Center projects that the population of Bossier Parish will grow by 7.3 percent over the next five years.

From startups to big industry, Bossier is home to global companies such as Valveworks USA and Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories. Valveworks USA reaches to several locations such as Canada, China, India and the Middle East. It manufactures the largest selection of gate valves and wellhead components and offers the most comprehensive line of any independent manufacturer in the world. Valveworks is considered a major regional employer and employs over 200 individuals between its assembly operations and warehouse division.

Dr. Reddy’s is another example of an international company finding success in northwest Louisiana. This company is a leading pharmaceutical manufacturer and creates greater access to affordable medicines and reach to as many patients as possible worldwide. Dr. Reddy’s has a strong presence in key generics markets across the globe.

The reasons for steady economic stability in the area are many. The manufacturing boom in the state has made its way into the region with Benteler Steel Tube Mill located at the Port of Caddo Bossier. In addition, the discovery of the Haynesville Shale in 2008 gave a rebirth to the gas and oil industry Louisiana historically depended upon. Barksdale Air Force’s location also nudges the local economy along, as the base itself has an annual economic impact of nearly $1 billion on the Ark-La-Tex region.

Another huge impact on the economy is the growing film industry known as “Hollywood South.” Since 2005, more than 105 movie and television productions have been filmed in the Bossier-Shreveport area with budgets totaling more than $1 billion and creating more than 77 hundred crew positions. Home to reality TV shows and big screen box office hits such as “Olympus Has Fallen” and “Playing For Keeps” has ranked Shreveport/Bossier No. 3 out of the Top 5 Cities to live, work, and make movies by MovieMaker Magazine (January 2014).

Shreveport/Bossier ranked in the honorable mention category for cities to live, work, and make movies by MovieMaker Magazine, May 2013;

No. 4 in Motion Picture Industry Growth in 2010, Business Facilities Magazine; and The Best Destination in the U.S. to Shoot Movies for two years in a row, P3 Production Magazine 2006/2007.

Area construction is another great indication of the health of local business, and construction projects in Bossier City have been rolling in steadily since 1993. Louisiana, specifically Bossier/Shreveport, was naturally equipped to provide a sturdy location for Benteler’s new facility. State and local officials identified an ideal location for Benteler’s proposed hot-rolling tube mill at The Port of Caddo-Bossier in northwest Louisiana, located near the Red River. To address Benteler’s crucial workforce needs, the state offered the services of LED FastStart – the No. 1 workforce program in the country – and built a workforce training center on the campus of Bossier Parish Community College. The first phase of construction on this project was completed in 2015, with a second phase underway and expected to be completed in 2020. Additionally, state officials partnered with the Greater Bossier Economic Development Foundation, the City of Bossier and the Bossier Parish Police Jury to facilitate construction of a new training facility to support a pipeline of talent for Benteler.

Unsurprisingly, the top industries in Bossier City that see the most employment are defense, construction, healthcare and education. City improvement projects such as the plans to redevelop Downtown Bossier City and the extension of Arthur Teague Parkway to the south proves that Bossier City is led by forward-thinking leaders. The high quality of life here is supported by easy access to healthcare and quality education, with the added bonus that the majority of commuters live within a 10-20 minute drive of their workplace!

In Louisiana, companies will find a skilled workforce, with more than 103,000 professionals with a background in software development or digital media. The industry also draws support from research hubs, such as Louisiana Immersive Technology Enterprise in Lafayette and the Cyber Innovation Center in Bossier City. With strong university curricula and programs, the state has graduated nearly thousands of students in the software development field, helping to supply the state a pipeline of talent for high-tech and software development companies. In addition, the state’s healthy business climate, low taxes, competitive labor and operating costs are compelling for new or expanding companies.

The Bossier-Shreveport communities have built-in support for entrepreneurs, small businesses, and startups with Cohab, located in downtown Shreveport’s Red River District. Cohab offers top-notch entrepreneurial training, unparalleled peer-to-peer and mentor support, and a productive workspace in which to build and scale a business or startup. Cohab offers weekly entrepreneurial events including 1 Million Cups as well as networking opportunities and educational workshops and boot camps throughout the year.

E.P.I.C., Entrepreneurs and Professionals In the Community, is a new program of the Bossier Chamber of Commerce that focuses on strengthening and connecting entrepreneurs and business professionals. The program is designed to promote organic growth and encourage collaboration and partnerships to build the next generation of leaders.

Source: louisianaeconomicdevelopment.com

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