Louisiana: Your Springboard to the United States
Where the mighty Mississippi River meets the Gulf of Mexico, deep in the heart of the vibrant American South, a well-kept secret awaits discovery. Rich in history, its uniqueness sets it apart. Bustling, international cities adjoin quiet, peaceful towns; deep traditions mingle with cutting-edge culture. Here, people take quiet pride in their accomplishments, the results of which are seen in both rapid economic growth and in a high quality-of-life. What matters more: investments from multinational companies, or the embrace of unique traditions? Wealth generated by a pro-business environment, or the efficient and fair government that helped create those conditions? This is a place where the answer is not important, since residents and investors have it all. This place is called: Louisiana.
Louisiana, a state located along the Gulf of Mexico, is an important regional hub within this rapidly-growing area of the U.S. Situated along the Mississippi River, the largest river in the US, Louisiana is located in the heart of the American South and borders Texas, Arkansas, and Mississippi. A cultural melting pot since its initial settlement by Europeans over 300 years ago, Louisiana is home to a mixture of Spanish, French, African, and American culture. It is home to the Port of South Louisiana, the largest bulk shipping port in the Western Hemisphere and among the top 10 largest in the world, as well as thriving energy, film, and agricultural industries. Louisiana is strategically located between two of the largest and fastest-growing states in the U.S. - Florida and Texas - and benefits from a pro-business government and a significant federal presence in the state.
Louisiana began as a trading center between the French and Spanish Empires in North America, and its importance in trading and logistics is still apparent today. The Port of South Louisiana, located between the two largest cities of New Orleans and Baton Rouge, is a critical location for the import and export of agricultural products and industrial commodities, and is the largest bulk cargo port in the world. Meanwhile, New Orleans serves as a base for much of Louisiana's petroleum industry, centered around offshore drilling and production; Baton Rouge, as the furthest-upriver navigable port along the Mississippi, serves as a major logistics hub and a petroleum refining hub. These and other industries form the backbone of the Louisiana economy, and will continue to grow in importance as the population of this region grows.
In addition to more traditional industries, Louisiana has become an important location for the entertainment industry, becoming the third-most popular location (behind California and New York) for filming in the U.S. and a significant destination for the video-game industry. Louisiana's low taxes, business-friendly environment and technologically-oriented educational system will ensure that high-technology companies continue to migrate to Louisiana as an easy place to start and expand businesses. Louisiana's attractiveness to new businesses provide economic benefits for the whole state. In the past four years, Louisiana has been home to dozens of new economic development projects which have created more than 63,000 new jobs and attracted over USD $28 billion in new investment.
With a warm and welcoming culture, business-friendly environment, and a strategic location rich in natural resources, Louisiana is poised to benefit from renewed growth in the Southeastern United States.
Louisiana's unique history stretches back thousands of years, with a modern history beginning almost 500 years ago. At times part of Spain, France, and the United States, its complex and colorful history has helped to create a culture which makes it unlike any other place in the country. Cajun and Creole culture, an essential part of the Louisiana identity, combines its own dialect of French with a unique collection of culinary and musical traditions. Festivals such as Mardi Gras have become famous around the world, while Louisiana gumbo, Creole jambalaya, and Cajun-style crayfish have become popular around the United States. Louisiana's welcoming and friendly people help attract visitors and residents from around the country to its bustling cities and small towns, and its cultural advantages have helped to turn it into a creative capital in the United States.
Louisiana Fast Facts
Population: 4.5 million
Location: Southeastern United States, between Florida and Texas
Resources: approximately one-third of US oil production comes from Louisiana, and the fourth-largest natural gas field in the world is located in Louisiana
Louisiana is known for its vibrant and diverse culture, which makes it a great place to live, work, and play. In addition, the state's government has strengthened its economic development division, Louisiana Economic Development, to "reposition Louisiana as the next great American state for business investment, quality of life, and economic opportunity". It's no wonder, then, that Louisiana is among the best places for investment. Here are a few of the reasons why:
Louisiana's Economy: Outperforming the South and the nation as an emerging economic development leader, Louisiana lands a No. 2 ranking in 2013 for economic growth potential by Business Facilities magazine.
Export Strengths: In 2013, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce named Louisiana the No. 1 export state in the nation along with a No. 2 rank in export growth and third for income growth per capita. Driven by a national leadership in exports, a strong energy sector and an investment in creating a diverse economic base, Louisiana is quickly becoming a national leader for international trade and growing business.
Top 10 for Business Climate: In three national business climate rankings – Area Development, Business Facilities and Site Selection – Louisiana now ranks among the Top 10 states in the U.S.
Southern Hollywood: Louisiana claimed the top spot for feature filmmaking in 2013 by hosting principal production for more movies than Canada, the United Kingdom, California or any other U.S. State, according to FilmL.A
A Leader Among Leaders: In 2013, for the fourth time in five years, Southern Business & Development magazine recognized Louisiana as a "State of the Year" in the South, thanks to significant growth in national rankings and economic progress. Baton Rouge, New Orleans, Lake Charles and Ascension Parish also received individual honors
High-Tech Wage Growth: Receiving a No. 1 rank in 2012 for digital media performance by Business Facilities magazine, Louisiana continues to thrive as a hotspot for digital opportunity. The ranking is further validated by the recent surge in business investment from digital companies like Gameloft, GE Capital and Electronic Arts – proof Louisiana is code for success
Entrepreneurship: Louisiana ranked #4 in the nation for entrepreneurial activity, up from #8 in 2009.
Clean and Open Government: Louisiana rocketed to No. 1 for its financial disclosure laws – the most improved state in the nation - according to The Center for Public Integrity.
Pro-Business State: Continuing its impressive economic rise, Louisiana placed No. 4 in Business Facilities magazine's Best Business Climate rankings in 2013 – up from its previous ranking of No. 5 in 2012. Today, Louisiana now ranks higher in every national business climate ranking than it ever did prior to 2008.
Favorable Tax Incentives for Businesses: In 2012, the Tax Foundation ranked Louisiana second in the U.S. for lowest tax burdens faced by new firms and 10th for mature firms. This low cost of doing business coupled with the state's low cost of living make Louisiana a magnet of economic opportunity.
Cities like Baton Rouge and New Orleans: Baton Rouge was ranked in the top 10 for mid-sized cities in the US for jobs by Forbes, while New Orleans made Fast Company's list of "12 Fast Cities of 2009" based on its new generation of social entrepreneurs. Our two projects, located in New Orleans and Baton Rouge, will tap into each city's strengths, as well as the benefits of Louisiana.