Manufacturer looking at vacant Acuity property (Feb. 24, 2014)
Alternate business incubator locations considered (Aug. 27, 2011)
Conyers unveils plans for a new business incubator (Sept. 28, 2010)
Acuity Brands will expand its operation, creating 700 jobs and investing more than $16 million into Rockdale and DeKalb counties over the next five years, announced Governor Nathan Deal's office Monday morning.
As part of a plan to create a workplace that will drive collaboration, innovation and technological advances, Acuity Brands will build a engineering and technology center at a site it owns in Decatur and will also invest in facility upgrades at its complex in Conyers.
"We have great people who drive our success and have helped make us the industry leader," said President, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Vernon Nagel in a press release statement. "Our goal with these investments is to provide our people with the best work environment possible and the tools and technologies necessary to drive our future success. We also believe that a world-class workplace and out team-centered culture will help us continue to attract the best talent to come work with us. We greatly appreciate the support of the state of Georgia and DeKalb and Rockdale counties, for their assistance to help make these projects possible."
"When a successful Georgia operation such as Acuity Brands decides to expand its facility and its employment roster, it's a win for all concerned, especially for our workforce," Deal said in a press release. "I have no doubt that our top-ranked business climate and cutting-edge logistics sector will continue to support Acuity Brands for many years to come, and we look forward to its continued success."
In Conyers, Acuity Brands will make investments in redesigning and retrofitting the four main buildings on its campus to include a workspace desgin, new infrastructure, enabling technologies and new furnishings.
"It is exciting to be a part of this great business announcement," said Rockdale County Board Chair Richard Oden. "Acuity Brands has been a strong business partner in Rockdale County, so we look forward to their expanded workforce here because we know that this wise, strategic move spurs our economic growth in many ways. Their employees will shop, live and work here for many years to come."
The upgrades will reportedly not involve the 530,000 square foot facility on Rockdale Industrial Blvd. - the former corporate headquarters of Lithonia Lighting - that the city had once considered for housing a business incubator but had been put back on the market.
Acuity Brands will retrofit an existing 167,000-square-foot building in Decatur to become its new state-of-the-art Engineering and Technology Center. The building located at 1 Lithonia Way will undergo a total transformation that will begin immediately.
The $11 million DeKalb project is scheduled for completion in mid-2015.
"DeKalb County and our citizens are proud that that Acuity has chosen our county for its engineering and technology center," said DeKalb County Government Interim CEO Lee May. "Creating well-paying jobs in our community will stimulate further growth not just for our citizens and Acuity, but also economic expansion and R&D growth for the industry. We warmly embrace Acuity and welcome them to our community."
"The fact that a leading global company has chosen Georgia to expand, as well as establish its technology innovation operations, speaks volumes about our thriving technology environment and pro-business climate," said GDEcD Commissioner Chris Carr. "More than 3,500 engineering graduates came from our universities and technical colleges in FY 2013. This, coupled with a strong network of companies and a highly skilled workforce, will keep Acuity Brands ahead of advancements in technology and global competition."
Acuity Brands, Inc. is one of the world's leading providers of lighting for indoor and outdoor applications. With fiscal year 2014 net sales of $2.4 billion, Acuity Brands employs approximately 7,000 associates and is headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia with operations throughout North America, Europe and Asia. The company's lighting solutions are sold under various brands, including Lithonia Lighting®, Holophane®, Peerless®, Gotham®, Mark Architectural LightingTM, Winona® Lighting, Healthcare Lighting®, Hydrel®, American Electric Lighting®, Carandini®, Antique Street LampsTM, Sunoptics®, RELOC® Wiring Solutions, Acculamp®, eldoLED® and Acuity Controls.