Albuquerque Business First
By Dan Mayfield
Within the next four to six weeks, Jami Grindatto expects to hear if Rio Rancho and Sandoval County are on General Electric’s short list.
Earlier this month Grindatto, the president and CEO of the Sandoval Economic Alliance, reached out to GE after its CEO blasted Connecticut’s governor for trying to raise millions by increasing business taxes there. SEA put together a proposal to convince GE that Rio Rancho should be its new home. Grindatto said the project would not just bring GE’s headquarters here, but also 800 executive and administrative employees.
“We’re on the list with probably 40 other states,” he said. “We’re waiting to see the short list, which will probably be in four to six weeks.”
On Friday Grindatto said that he believes Rio Rancho, or the Albuquerque metro area, has a good chance at being on that short list. But, he said, SEA’s campaign is going beyond GE and reaching out to several other companies in Connecticut.
“We did a marketing campaign to address issues,” he said. “It’s a tactic. The strategy is focusing on what industries we want to go after. Our Connecticut play is purely tactical.”
General Electric could not be reached for comment.
Though some have wondered if GE’s president was serious when he said the company was looking for a new headquarters, Grindatto is confident the company is truly looking for a new home.
“Companies would not execute media and use airtime if they weren’t serious,” he said.
GE’s CEO Jeff Immelt warned his company’s employees in early July that the company was looking to move its headquarters, according to a CNBC report.
“I heard that headline, and I wondered why,” Grindatto said. “It was the taxes. And then, I thought, what’s the opportunity? Is it an opportunity? We mobilized. We researched companies in Connecticut and we looked at what’s there and reacted to the news.”