Among the things COVID-19 has done was to lay bare the shortcomings of a global chain supply for goods used in the United States.
Most of the medical supplies needed by hospitals had to come from overseas. Retooling for domestic production depended on components from other countries. In short, the U.S. could not do for itself what it needed.
U.S. companies are reassessing their global and off-shore presence, an examination that started when trade wars with China heated up and accelerated when the coronavirus pandemic affected logistics.
At Commercial Real Estate Group of Tucson, I’ve glimpsed the future. Arizona-based Banner Health announced last spring that it acquired a minority stake in Prestige Ameritech, the largest domestic manufacturer of face masks, including those used in medical settings. The investment was in partnership with Premier Inc., a health care improvement company.
Banner, which has two hospitals in Tucson, also announced a six-year commitment to buy a portion of masks from Texas-based Prestige for its own use.
Today’s manufacturing and supply chain logistics are complex. Components are made from a variety of countries and companies. Moving goods from overseas can become costly or impossible to execute when conditions aren’t right.
Tucson Industrial Space
Companies that are thinking about how to move manufacturing to U.S. soil would do well to consider Tucson industrial space and its reputation as a Southwest logistics and distribution hub.
Several companies already are bullish on the opportunities to develop, produce and distribute goods from the Tucson area. Raytheon Missile & Defense, Pima County’s largest private employer, is one of several companies that make components and full systems for commercial aerospace and defense.
Firms here also manufacture products in mining technology, optics, photonics, bioscience, biotechnology and solar technology in hubs that fosters innovation. A strong workforce development effort provides the highly trained employees that they need.
There’s a reason why Tucson is attractive to manufacturers. It’s become a crucial distribution, fulfillment, logistics and transportation location.
Harsch Investment Properties has built a 157,500-square-foot spec building to attract companies that warehouse and move goods. HomeGoods, Target and Amazon are among the companies that have opened and run fulfillment centers of their own.
Large swatches of land is available in Tucson to create manufacturing and distribution centers near crucial transportation services at Tucson International Airport, the multimodal inland Port of Tucson and border access to Mexico. Opportunity Zones provide tax incentives that spur development.
Mexico and Southern Arizona have spent years creating what officials call a trade super-region. It combines the cost effectiveness of maquiladoras, especially in the manufacture of automotive and aerospace products, with the domestic talent for R&D, engineering and other services.
Domestic manufacturing can be fast-tracked in the Tucson area, thanks to the efforts of economic developer Sun Corridor Inc., venture capital funders and the Arizona Technology Council and other industry development organizations.
After COVID-19 is under control, the Tucson economy is expected to recover quickly as young, talented workers are drawn to this low-density city with quality job prospects.
Learn About Tucson Industrial Space
To see how attractive Tucson industrial space is for relocation, new ventures and expanded operations, contact me at Commercial Real Estate Group of Tucson, 520-299-3400.