July 21, 2011

Ohio Home to Five Fortune Global 500 Companies

COLUMBUS, Ohio, July 21, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- For global companies, competition comes from every corner of the world and businesses need every advantage to survive and prosper. Site selection is a critical decision because the ideal business location maximizes the value of the investment by delivering a perfect balance between access to mission-critical resources and low overhead costs.

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Businesses find Ohio is uniquely able to deliver that perfect balance, and the state continues to gain recognition for its proactive, business-friendly redesign aimed at helping companies better compete in a 21st century global economy. In fact, Ohio is home to five Fortune Global 500 company headquarters in the annual ranking released this month by Fortune magazine.

The five Fortune Global 500 companies in Ohio are (1) Cardinal Health; (2) Kroger; (3) Procter & Gamble; (4) Macy's; and (5) Nationwide.

"As Cardinal Health celebrates 40 years of growth, we know that what Ohio offers as a business location - like its excellent infrastructure, skilled labor force and central access point for the distribution of goods throughout North America - has been an important contributor to our success," said George Barrett, chairman and CEO of Cardinal Health, which also ranked 19th in the United States and 53rd in the world with $98.6 billion in revenue on the annual ranking.

"Ohio has purposefully redesigned its business climate to make the state an ideal location for businesses to compete in a global economy," said Ed Burghard, executive director of the Ohio Business Development Coalition, the nonprofit organization the markets the state for capital investment.

Business owners, investors and site selection experts are looking for a location that balances resources and low overhead costs that offers a higher chance of global business success.

With that in mind, Ohio lawmakers dramatically revamped the state's tax structure to create the lowest tax rates in the Midwest and an extremely profit-friendly business climate for companies that locate in the state. Ohio's location and tax structure makes it cost effective for companies to serve customers in North America and around the world.

A recent report by the Quantitative Economics and Statistics Practices (QUEST) of Ernst & Young in conjunction with the Council On State Taxation (COST) ranks Ohio as third in the nation for friendliest tax environment.

The most notable changes to Ohio's tax system include the elimination of two very burdensome business taxes - the corporation franchise tax and the tangible personal property tax. These taxes were replaced by a new, 0.26 percent Commercial Activity Tax (CAT), which applies only to in-state sales.

"If a business were to ship 100 percent of its sales out of Ohio, it would pay zero CAT," said former Ohio Tax Commissioner Thomas M. Zaino, J.D., CPA, now member in charge of the Columbus office of the McDonald Hopkins LLC law firm. "This increases Ohio's appeal to companies that export goods out of the state or country."

In addition, companies that locate in Ohio can reduce operating costs because there is no tax on inventory or corporate income - and boost the return on investment with no tax on purchases of machinery and equipment.

Economic development incentives and public-private support encourage business success and make the state an ideal location for businesses to locate or expand operations. In addition, strategic investments by the Ohio Third Frontier are paving the way for commercialization of new technologies.

Ohio is recognized nationally and worldwide as a business location with unbeatable access to Midwestern, Central Canadian and East Coast markets. With a sophisticated transportation infrastructure and multi-modal capability, Ohio represents a strong global platform to route goods and services to anywhere in the world. In fact, Ohio is within 600 miles of 60 percent of the U.S. population and 50 percent of the Canadian population.

Plus, Ohio is a juggernaut of skilled worker productivity with 180,000 graduating high school seniors and more than 78,000 college graduates ready to join the workforce every year. In addition, the state offers unique workforce programs for continuing education to help employers conduct necessary training in partnership with industry.

Companies invest in Ohio because the state offers a perfect balance between work and life unlike anywhere else. Employees and their families can achieve both their professional and personal aspirations without having to sacrifice one for the other.

"We also recognize that its wonderful communities and ease of living make Ohio a place our employees are glad to call home," shared Barrett.

"Ohio's success is not solely dependent on the strength of its business advantages. It's about Ohio's promise of work-life balance," said Burghard. "Low-cost, low-stress communities and short commutes create the State of Perfect Balance, where you can achieve both professional and personal success without sacrificing one for the other."

About the Ohio Business Development Coalition

The Ohio Business Development Coalition is a nonprofit organization that provides marketing strategy and implementation to support Ohio's economic development efforts. For more information, visit www.ohiomeansbusiness.com.

SOURCE Ohio Business Development Coalition