Photo by Brooke Wanser
By BROOKE WANSER
At a ribbon cutting ceremony in Schneider Electric’s new Nashville Hub, local and state officials attended to congratulate the German energy company on consolidating their North American operations to Middle Tennessee.
“How exciting for me as a Tennessean and as a Williamson County-an to know you all are the ones that are going to expand in this facility,” Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R) said.
The hub is located at Two Franklin Park. It sits between McEwen Drive and the Nissan North America headquarters, just east of Interstate 65.
Annette Clayton, the president and chief executive officer of Schneider’s North American operations, opened the ceremony.
“For our Franklin community, this facility is our pledge to help make the greater Nashville area the hub for both technology and energy innovation,” Clayton said, noting that 325,000 Tennesseans work in the advanced energy field.
On the 158,000-square-foot campus, the largest Schneider office in the country, Clayton said spaces are “purpose-built.” This means there are rooms for nursing mothers, prayer and meditation, fitness and market centers and outdoor walking trails.
Governor Bill Haslam’s Chief of Staff Jim Henry spoke at the event, thanking the company for choosing Middle Tennessee.
“The governor often says jobs are created when companies put capital at risk,” Henry said.
He noted a few conditions that make the state friendly for businesses. Some of the conditions were low worker’s compensation insurance rates and the passage of the IMPROVE Act in 2017.
“During the administration, Tennessee has gone to the number one state for advanced industry growth,” Henry said, citing a Brookings Institute study.
“We’re not tired of opening our doors for any new business that comes here,” Williamson County Mayor Rogers Anderson said, addressing Henry, during his remarks.
Franklin Mayor Ken Moore mentioned city sustainability and health awards as characteristics he said were similar between the city of Franklin and the Schneider model.
“This is further evidence that Williamson County can support corporate operations,” Matt Largen, the president and chief executive officer of Williamson, Inc., said.
Largen said he and his team have helped Schneider employees who wanted to move from Nashville to Williamson County.
“These are the kind of jobs that help raise wages that grow our economy in a strategic way,” he said.