In 2023, Louisiana experienced another year of economic success, attaining record-breaking milestones and securing historical business development projects. With over $25 billion in new investments, it marked the third consecutive year where the Bayou State exceeded the $20 billion mark, an accomplishment that South Louisiana’s 9-parish region played a pivotal role in as one of the state’s fastest-performing metropolitan areas.
Economic Growth In Numbers
There is more to fostering a lucrative economy than capital investments alone. Louisiana’s gross domestic product (GDP) witnessed remarkable growth in 2023, surpassing the national average in both the second and third quarters. Louisiana Economic Development (LED) Secretary Don Pierson proudly attributes this achievement to the dedicated efforts of LED under Governor John Bel Edwards’ administration, along with partners like One Acadiana—the agency behind South Louisiana Economic Development.
Furthermore, the collaborative work among these state, regional, and local agencies has helped Louisiana attract over $100 billion in new capital investments over the last three years and achieve the lowest recorded unemployment in its history since 2016.
South Louisiana’s Top Investments in 2023
From innovative industrial projects to manufacturing expansions, South Louisiana acquired a strong portfolio of ventures in 2023 that contributed to the state’s exceptional year of wins. Here’s a closer look into the impactful projects that have not only fueled economic prosperity, but have also positioned the region as a key player in fostering sustainable development and progress:
- Infinity Operators, LLC (Infinity Valve & Supply) – Lafayette Parish
Infinity Operators, a subsidiary of Infinity Valve & Supply, is investing $1.1 million to expand its air compression division in Lafayette Parish. This expansion is set to create 68 direct new jobs and 145 indirect new jobs, totaling 213 employment opportunities. The environmentally-friendly air compressor packages will not only boost production, but also contribute to emission reduction, aligning with Louisiana’s commitment to a sustainable future.
- First Solar – Lafayette Parish
First Solar, the largest solar energy manufacturer in the United States, has chosen Acadiana Regional Airport for its fifth American manufacturing facility. With a colossal investment of up to $1.1 billion, the facility is expected to generate 700 new direct jobs, constituting the largest single capital investment in the region’s history. This move further solidifies Louisiana’s position at the forefront of the global energy transition.
- Delta Biofuel – Iberia Parish
Delta Biofuel’s $100 million investment in Iberia Parish for a renewable fuel production facility came as an easy decision for the company after gaining approval from Louisiana’s Industrial Tax Exemption and Quality Jobs programs. Converting sugarcane waste into feedstock for low-emissions energy generation, this project is anticipated to create 126 new direct jobs and an additional 149 indirect jobs, contributing a total of 275 new jobs to the Acadiana region.
- Tides Medical – Lafayette Parish
Tides Medical, a producer of skin graft products, is investing $1.5 million to upgrade its corporate headquarters and manufacturing facility in Lafayette. This expansion will result in 40 new direct jobs, the retention of 77 existing positions, and an additional 54 new indirect jobs, contributing to a total of 171 new and retained jobs in the Acadiana region. Tides Medical’s commitment to enhancing health outcomes aligns with Louisiana’s focus on the biotechnology sector.
Attracting Global Attention to South Louisiana
While South Louisiana has long been an attractive destination for its culture, cuisine, and “joie de vivre” spirit, its pro-business climate has quickly gained the attention of out-of-state employers and entrepreneurs looking for a new home to propel its operations. As Louisiana continues to break records and achieve unprecedented success, the call for investment in this dynamic region has never been more compelling.
From our competitive incentive programs to our wealth of business resources South Louisiana Economic Development remains at the forefront of driving progress that serves both companies and communities alike.
Contact us today to learn how your business can achieve growth in South Louisiana!