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NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - An international shipholding company announced plans on Wednesday to relocate its corporate headquarters to New Orleans. International Shipholding Corp, which was founded in New Orleans in 1947, moved its headquarters to Mobile Alabama following Hurricane Katrina.
Governor Jindal says the relocation will create 100 new direct jobs at a 45,000- to 50,000-square-foot headquarters facility in the city's Warehouse District, where the company will soon complete a purchase of property already under contract. The new direct jobs will average $70,000 per year, plus benefits, and LED estimates the project will result in an additional 113 new indirect jobs, for a total of more than 210 new jobs in the greater New Orleans area.
Governor Jindal said, "I am excited to announce the return of International Shipholding Corporation to New Orleans, where ISH will continue a great tradition of maritime and international commerce companies operating in Louisiana's largest city. ISH could have stayed in Mobile, but they are coming back home because of our strong business climate, expanding industrial projects, resurgent New Orleans economy, and business growth along the Mississippi River.
Listed on the New York Stock Exchange as ISH, the company reportedly owns and operates a global fleet of waterborne cargo vessels. ISH recorded annual revenue of more than $310 million in its just concluded 2013 fiscal year.
"We are pleased to be returning to New Orleans where the Mississippi River once again plays an important strategic role for our company," ISH President Erik L. JohnsenJohnsen said. "We are excited to be returning at a time when the city has made significant progress in its recovery. We further believe we will be better-positioned in New Orleans to take advantage of transportation opportunities from the significant industrial investment being made in the state."
Based upon ISH's plans to renovate a historic structure, the company could be eligible for a Restoration Tax Abatement incentive waiving property taxes on improvements to the structure for up to 10 years, subject to approvals from the local governing authority and the State of Louisiana.
"New Orleans is open for business, attracting private investment and introducing major developments in neighborhoods across the city," New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu said. "The return of International Shipholding reflects the economic growth, jobs and increasing opportunities that will help us rebuild better than we were before."
International Shipholding Corp. will conduct its headquarters facility renovation in 2014 and 2015 and relocate employees and resources as the corporate headquarters is completed. The entire transition will be concluded by the fourth quarter of 2015, when ISH will begin formal operation of its headquarters in New Orleans.
"Greater New Orleans Inc. is proud to be part of the team that has helped bring International Shipholding back to New Orleans," said President and CEO Michael Hecht of Greater New Orleans Inc. "International Shipholding's return is a double-win for the region. First, we are gaining 100 new direct jobs. But even more importantly, International Shipholding's return to New Orleans heralds a broader, deeply important trend - the best people and companies are coming home."