MT. STERLING, KY. (Jan. 6, 2023) – Today, Gov. Andy Beshear congratulated Neogen Corp., a manufacturer of animal and food safety products, on its new facility in Montgomery County, a $9.8 million investment creating 79 full-time jobs and furthering the Governor’s initiative to grow Kentucky’s agritech sector.
“We are determined to provide a better future for Kentuckians, and the growth of our state’s agritech sector is at the center of that effort,” Gov. Beshear said. “Neogen has maintained a presence in the commonwealth for nearly 30 years, and the company’s growth in Kentucky indicates our successful partnership will continue well into the future. Congratulations to Neogen on this latest investment and to the Mount Sterling community for the addition of nearly 80 new jobs that will benefit the local workforce and their families.”
Neogen has operated in Kentucky since locating in Lexington in 1992 with the acquisition of ELISA Technologies. ELISA was formed in 1990 through a license agreement with the University of Kentucky to develop diagnostic test kits to detect abused and therapeutic drugs in racehorses and greyhounds. Lexington serves as Neogen’s Animal Safety headquarters, which has grown to employ 170 residents across two Lexington facilities.
In 2021, an affiliate of Phoenix Investors purchased a 267,000-square-foot facility on Owingsville Road, formerly home to Regal Beloit. Shortly after acquiring the property, Phoenix entered into a long-term lease with Neogen for the facility. The company’s investment includes building improvements and new equipment. Work on the project was completed in recent weeks.
In 2020, Neogen’s Lexington operations stepped up in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. Neogen increased manufacturing and distribution of critically needed biosecurity products, including disinfectants, cleaners and hand sanitizers while working closely with government agencies around the world to quickly approve products for use.
“As Neogen continues to grow both domestically and internationally, it is extremely important that we have facilities that are able to quickly ship products to our customers around the world,” said Doug Jones, Neogen’s chief operating officer. “This expansion of our Kentucky distribution centers will be a significant step in supporting our domestic and global growth plans. Neogen is excited to work with the Mt. Sterling community to continue improving the lives of people and animals around the world, providing solutions in a timely manner.”
“Neogen’s commitment to the facility represents a tremendous outcome both for Phoenix and for the Mt. Sterling community,” said Phoenix Managing Director Anthony Crivello. “We are thrilled to be part of bringing such a high-quality company to Mt. Sterling.”
Neogen, founded in 1982, is headquartered in Lansing, Michigan. Its animal safety division manufactures and markets a variety of animal health products, including diagnostics, pharmaceuticals, supplements, biologics, wound care, veterinary instruments, rodenticides, disinfectants and insecticides. The company employs approximately 1,700 people worldwide, with nine locations in the U.S. and 15 international facilities.
Phoenix Investors is a leading expert in the acquisition, renovation and releasing of former manufacturing facilities in the United States. The revitalization of facilities throughout the continental United States leads to positively transforming communities and restarting the economic engine in those communities. Phoenix’s affiliate companies hold equity interests in a portfolio of industrial properties totaling approximately 61 million square feet spanning 29 states. In Kentucky, Phoenix owns approximately 2 million square feet of industrial real estate.
The new location adds to Kentucky’s thriving food, beverage and agritech sector, which includes more than 200 agribusiness-related facilities and employs over 20,000 people statewide. Administration-to-date, new location and expansion projects within the industry are expected to create nearly 4,700 full-time jobs with over $4.5 billion in new investments.
Montgomery County Judge/Executive Chris Haddix welcomed new industry to the area.
“Montgomery County is thrilled by Neogen locating in our area,” said Judge Haddix. “The fact that this Fortune’s 100 fastest-growing company, publicly traded, has chosen to expand and investment in Montgomery County speaks to the community culture and vibrancy we are building here. We are excited for these high-paying jobs coming to our community.”
Mt. Sterling Mayor Al Botts said the project is part of the community’s strive toward growth.
“The City of Mt. Sterling is very excited to hear of Neogen’s plans to expand their operations in Montgomery County. Neogen is a proud company with a good track record of providing quality jobs and opportunities for their workforce. We are excited that they have chosen to locate, invest and grow here with us!”
Mt. Sterling/Montgomery County Industrial Authority Executive Director Jason Rainey supported the project as well.
“We are grateful that Neogen has chosen Montgomery County as its home to expand its Kentucky footprint. Their investment and job creation here will be a huge asset for our community.” said Rainey. “We look forward to supporting this company every step of the way as it brings its luminous vision to reality in Mt. Sterling, Kentucky.”
Neogen’s investment and planned job creation furthers recent economic momentum in the commonwealth, as the state builds back stronger from the effects of the pandemic.
Since the beginning of his administration, Gov. Beshear has announced the creation of 41,237 full-time jobs and 728 private-sector new-location and expansion projects totaling $22.89 billion in announced investments.
With the books closed on 2022, the Governor has now secured the best two-year period in state history for economic growth.
In 2021, the commonwealth shattered every economic development record in the books. Private-sector new-location and expansion announcements included a record $11.2 billion in total planned investment and commitments to create a record 18,000-plus full-time jobs across the coming years.
That momentum continued strongly into 2022 with 248 new-location and expansion announcements totaling 16,000 full-time jobs behind nearly $10.5 billion in new investment.
The robust job creation has been accompanied by rising wages across the commonwealth. The average incentivized hourly wage in 2022 was $26.78 before benefits, the second-highest mark since 2010 and an 11.5% increase over the previous year.
Gov. Beshear also announced the two largest economic development projects in state history. In September 2021, Gov. Beshear and leaders from Ford Motor Co. and SK Innovation celebrated a transformative $5.8 billion investment that will create 5,000 jobs in Hardin County. And in April 2022, the Governor was joined by leadership at Envision AESC to announce a $2 billion investment that will create 2,000 jobs in Warren County. These announcements solidify Kentucky as the EV battery production capital of the United States.
Kentucky’s success has been noted by both S&P Global Ratings and Fitch Ratings, which have upgraded the state’s financial outlook to positive in recognition of the commonwealth’s surging economy. In addition, Site Selection magazine placed Kentucky at 6th in its annual Prosperity Cup rankings for 2022, which recognizes state-level economic success based on capital investments.
Gov. Beshear’s administration is projected to post the four highest years of budget surpluses in Kentucky history, and the state’s rainy day fund has a record balance of $2.7 billion.
To encourage investment and job growth in the community, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) in June 2021 preliminarily approved an incentive agreement with the company under the Kentucky Business Investment program. The performance-based agreement can provide tax incentives based on the company’s investment and annual job and wage targets.
Additionally, KEDFA approved Neogen tax incentives through the Kentucky Enterprise Initiative Act (KEIA). KEIA allows approved companies to recoup Kentucky sales and use tax on construction costs, building fixtures, equipment used in research and development and electronic processing.
By meeting its annual targets over the agreement term, the company can be eligible to keep a portion of the new tax revenue it generates. The company may claim eligible incentives against its income tax liability and/or wage assessments.
In addition, Neogen can receive resources from Kentucky’s workforce service providers. Those include no-cost recruitment and job placement services, reduced-cost customized training and job-training incentives.
For more information on Neogen, visit Neogen.com.
A detailed community profile for Montgomery County can be viewed here.
More information on the Governor’s AgriTech Initiative is available at AgriTech.ky.gov.
Information on Kentucky’s economic development efforts and programs is available at CED.ky.gov. Fans of the Cabinet for Economic Development can also join the discussion at facebook.com/CEDkygov, on Twitter @CEDkygov, Instagram @CEDkygov and LinkedIn.