Software firmís proposal for Plow Building goes forward

Published: Tuesday, September 18, 2018 By: Molly M. Fleming Source: The Journal Record

Rural Sourcing Inc. is a fan of restored old buildings even if that means restoring the building itself.

The Atlanta-based software development company could bring the restored Plow Building to full capacity if the city finalizes its proposed incentive deal with the company.

The Economic Development Trust approved a joint resolution to continue discussing a $450,000 economic-development incentive agreement with Rural Sourcing Inc. The company plans to hire 150 people over the next three years, with an estimated average annual minimum wage of $68,614.

RSI Inc. Chief Financial Officer Tre Sasser said at the EDT meeting that the company started working on finding its fifth location in May. RSI Inc. started in Jonesboro, Arkansas, and now has its headquarters in Atlanta, though it still has an office in Jonesboro. The company also has offices in New Mexico and Alabama.

“We are at capacity in all our locations,” he said.

On a two-day trip to the city, RSI leaders looked at a lot of commercial real estate. The Plow caught their attention.

The company plans to lease 18,900 square feet, taking up two floors. Since developer Richard McKown renovated the building, it will take only about 120 days before RSI is up and running in Oklahoma City.

There were 49 other cities on RSI’s list. Sasser said the incentive was a part of the reason to come here. But the low cost of living and high quality of life were even more important priorities. The low cost of living is important because it helps the company compete with information-technology firms that have been moved overseas.

The resolution approved Tuesday will go to the Oklahoma City Council. Then, the EDT will have the final say in approving the incentives. The EDT will likely see the final resolution in November.

RSI will not get any money until it completes its hiring of 150 people.

City of Oklahoma City Economic Development Manager Brent Bryant said the incentives will be distributed over five to seven years.

Sasser said RSI will hire 50 people in the first six months and expects to have 70 people on board by its first anniversary. There should be 110 people on staff by the second anniversary, and all 150 people will be in the building by year three.

Greater Oklahoma City Chamber Executive Vice President Jeff Seymour said the entity thinks this type of business recruitment represents forward momentum in the city. It’s a good example of economic diversity, with these jobs that are in innovative technology.

Sasser said the company has found a lot of talent in the U.S., and expects to the do same in Oklahoma City. RSI does not require an employee to have a four-year college degree. Potential employees are given a technical test where their aptitude is measured. Everyone hired in Oklahoma City will be from the area, meaning people won’t be transferred from other offices.

The city estimates the project will have a $122.5 million economic impact over the first seven years.

Read the story at JournalRecord.com

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