Governor Mike Pence spent the day in Ontario meeting with business and government officials, highlighting results of the state’s increased efforts to attract Canadian investment to the Hoosier State.
This morning, the Governor joined leaders of Skjodt-Barrett Foods, a 29-year-old Canadian specialty foods manufacturer, at the company’s global headquarters in Brampton, just outside of Toronto. During his visit, Mike Brannan, general manager of Skjodt-Barrett’s U.S. operations, informed the Governor of the food manufacturer’s decision to invest $43.9 million to expand its U.S. headquarters in Lebanon, Indiana, adding nearly 100 new jobs.
“It has been a productive day representing Hoosiers in Toronto,” said Pence. “Each meeting has been focused on building Indiana’s relationships in Toronto, all with the goal of helping Canadian companies see a greater return on their investment by hiring more Hoosiers. It was exciting, in particular, to visit Skjodt-Barrett’s facilities in Canada, knowing that they will soon be bringing more of that technology to Indiana.”
Pence kicked off the one-day job-hunting trip this morning in Toronto by meeting with Ontario Prime Minister Kathleen Wynne to discuss ways to strengthen Indiana and Canada’s partnership and increase opportunities for economic development and job creation. The Governor also visited a Toronto-based venture capital firm that is considering investment in Indiana life science companies. Leaders from a Canadian automotive supplier then met with the Governor to discuss the company’s consideration of central Indiana for a new location.
“The Governor’s visit to Ontario underscores the strength of this important bilateral relationship,” said Consul General of Canada Douglas George. “Canada is Indiana’s most important trading partner with $19.6 billion in two way trade.”
Canada is Indiana’s largest export partner, with the state exporting $11.8 billion in Hoosier-built products to Canada just last year. More than 14,800 Hoosiers work for Canadian-owned companies and more than 193,500 jobs in Indiana are dependent on trade and investment with Canada. The Hoosier State is home to more than 90 Canadian firms, including global companies such as Dorel Juvenile Group, KIK Custom Products, CN Railway and Magna Powertrain.
This evening, Pence will conclude his fourth international jobs mission as Governor by hosting nearly 30 company executives, site selection consultants and government leaders at the season opener of the Toronto Maple Leafs to discuss and enhance economic development opportunities in the Hoosier State. This trip is the Governor’s third international job hunting trip in 2014 alone, following trips to Germany in April and the United Kingdom in July where he shared why Indiana is a state that works for global companies to grow and thrive.