graphicVisitors to southern Ohio are immediately taken with the picturesque Appalachian foothills and the friendly welcome standard that is known throughout the region. What the casual observer may miss, however, companies have already discovered - a dedicated labor force, excellent transportation links, a business friendly environment, and a quality of life second to none that make the area a viable, attractive option for both commercial and industrial growth.

As companies tap into southern Ohio’s valuable resources, Jackson County has gradually moved to the forefront as an area that has many profitable incentives for business and industry. Major corporations such as Pillsbury, Luigino’s, Inc., Merillat Industries, Meridian Automotive Systems (formerly Goodyear Tire And Rubber) and Frick-Gallagher Manufacturing Company have established plants in the county because of key factors that, in combination, are difficult to find elsewhere.

More than 32,000 residents live in Jackson County. The county has an eligible workforce of more than 14,000 people and 110,000 within a one-hour commute.A benefit of the large pool of qualified workers is the dedication employers in the area have come to recognize.

graphicCompanies can also tap into the area’s excellent advanced training schools and centers. In addition to several well-known colleges and universities within the region, there are many agencies and technical institutions that offer certified workforce training programs designed to stay on top of ever-changing industry needs.

Ohio is well-known for its business friendly environment, and Jackson County is no different. The cities of Wellston and Jackson offer enticing incentives such as enterprise zones with tax exemption programs, as do several townships. Jackson County also has a revolving loan fund and an economic development office with access to state loan and tax credit programs.

Companies that have established roots in the county recognize the value of such incentives. One of several factors that attracted Pillsbury, a frozen foods manufacturer, was the county’s proactive stance and tax abatement opportunity. Luigino’s located here because of the overall business climate as well as the excellent low-cost transportation and utilities.

Business expansion is also an indicator of a favorable business climate. In recent years, companies in Jackson County such as Pillsbury, Luigino’s and Meridian Automotive Systems (formerly Goodyear Tire & Rubber), have expanded their plant capacity several times to meet growing production demands.

The area has also attracted new companies such as Galerie Au Chocolat, Millennium Teleservices and Coleman Industries, as well as a regional warehouse distribution center by American Warehousing.

Jackson County offers two industrial parks, one in Jackson and one in Wellston. More than 300 industry-ready acres are available for development. Jackson also offers a commercial/retail park, a newly remodeled shopping mall and several smaller commercial/retail centers.

The downtown areas of both Jackson and Wellston have recently undergone Downtown Revitalization Projects that helped spruce up and fill storefronts to near capacity. They also completed Streetscape projects that replaced sidewalks, installed decorative brick walkways, and added period lighting, benches and downtown parks.

Jackson County’s future looks even brighter with new health care facilities, new educational facilities, industrial, commercial and residential developments, making it the fifth fastest growing county in the State of Ohio.

For more information, contact Jackson County Economic Development at 740-286-2838 or


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