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The Banks Cincy

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GE picks downtown Cincinnati for offices

General Electric announced yesterday that its new U.S. global-operations center will be in downtown Cincinnati, along the Ohio River.

GE said the center will be at the Banks development, which includes residential and entertainment sites between stadiums used by the Cincinnati Reds baseball team and Bengals football team.

In April, the Fairfield, Conn.-based company had announced a plan for the center with 1,400 new jobs for Ohio. GE had been deciding among possible Cincinnati-area locations. Officials describe the new jobs as well-paid, professional positions.

Construction is slated to start this year. GE said the center should be fully operational by 2017. A temporary center is to open in July, also in downtown Cincinnati.

It is GE’s fifth such center to open around the world. The company will consolidate back-office functions such as finance and information technology at the Cincinnati center.

An undetermined number of the 1,400 jobs will be positions transferred from other GE locations nationwide.

Employment could grow to 2,500 jobs at the new facility, according to state records prepared for a tax-credit agreement.

In May, the Ohio Tax Credit Authority approved an 85 percent, 15-year tax credit for GE in exchange for the creation of $111 million in new annual payroll by the end of 2017. The agreement has yet to be executed.

But if GE commits in the agreement and reaches the goal of 1,400 new jobs, it is eligible to receive tax credits valued at $51 million, the Ohio Development Services Agency said.

State tax credits are in addition to what the Cincinnati and Hamilton County governments might offer.