Gov. John Bel Edwards highlighted General Informatics’ $20 million investment for the new @Highland technology park.
Louisiana Economic Development Secretary Don Pierson and General Informatics CEO Mohit “Mo” Vij joined Baton Rouge Mayor-President Kip Holden and other leaders in breaking ground for the new technology park, which will serve as headquarters for General Informatics and include other technology businesses and lifestyle features near the intersection of Highland Road and Bluebonnet Boulevard in Baton Rouge.
With a master-planned community zoned for office, restaurant and eventual retail and residential space, the initial $20 million capital investment will include a 52,000-square-foot, three-story office building that will house General Informatics, a provider of managed IT services, along with other business tenants and a boutique restaurant that will be open to the public, with Highland Road access. The project will incorporate ecologically beneficial features, such as wetlands preservation with bioswales, at its 8.5-acre location adjacent to BREC’s Bluebonnet Swamp Nature Center.
The @Highland project will retain 30 existing General Informatics jobs and create 66 new direct jobs over the next decade, with an average salary of $50,000, plus benefits. Louisiana Economic Development estimates the project will result in 81 new indirect jobs, for a total of 147 new jobs in the Capital Region. In addition, the initial phase build-out will generate an estimated 105 construction jobs.
“Louisiana is becoming the new destination for high-performing technology companies,” Gov. Edwards said. “We have attracted major investments from such companies as IBM, GE, CSRA, CGI and many others. We also have seen significant growth from tech companies launched in Louisiana, from Fortune 500 companies like CenturyLink to today’s expansion announcement by General Informatics. What’s becoming increasingly clear is companies like General Informatics and their employees desire a great work-life balance, and the @Highland project in Baton Rouge will be a shining example of that vision for the 21st century workplace.”
Construction of the initial building for General Informatics and other @Highland tenants will be completed by mid-2017. General Informatics began operations more than 15 years ago at the Louisiana Business & Technology Center and became one of the most successful tenants of the business incubator located at LSU’s Innovation Park.
“General Informatics is a Louisiana’s homegrown success story,” said Vij. “Conceived at LSU and nurtured at Louisiana Business & Technology Center, it’s poised to create the future of public safety technology using Virtual reality and Artificial Intelligence. The @Highland campus along with support from LED and City of Baton Rouge provides a great incentive for General Informatics to grow and keep its workforce closest to their homes.”
In addition to providing comprehensive IT services for domestic and international clients, General Informatics is developing handheld devices and augmented reality glasses for strategic markets. For law enforcement officers, for example, the devices can perform license-plate and facial-recognition scans, and produce within seconds any applicable criminal background records.
General Informatics has collaborated with the Louisiana Sheriffs’ Association to carry out field tests of the devices, which can create more efficient and accurate criminal reports for deputies, provide a safety premium through hands-free use, offer the convenience of rapid ticket and report production through mobile printers, and potentially produce technology cost-savings through the replacement of onboard computers in law enforcement vehicles.
“We see this investment by General Informatics as another step in growing Baton Rouge’s technology base, which in turn grows our local high-tech workforce,” said Baton Rouge Mayor-President Melvin “Kip” Holden. “What makes this corporate expansion so exciting is that it is a homegrown company, working with giants like Microsoft and other high-tech companies to develop cutting-edge business solutions right here in Baton Rouge.”
LED began discussing the potential project with General Informatics in February 2016. To secure the project, the State of Louisiana offered the company a competitive incentive package that includes the comprehensive workforce solutions of LED FastStart®, the nation’s No. 1 state workforce development program. General Informatics also is expected to utilize the state’s Quality Jobs and Digital Interactive Media & Software Development incentives. In addition, East Baton Rouge City-Parish government is providing General Informatics a $500,000 performance-based incentive to be paid in five annual installments.
"General Informatics is a true Baton Rouge success story," said Adam Knapp, Baton Rouge Area Chamber president and CEO. "BRAC has been a strong supporter of the company since its start in LSU's business incubator, and we are thrilled to have worked with Mayor Holden's office to assist with the new campus and expansion. This announcement is the latest victory for the Baton Rouge Area's growing software industry."
About General Informatics
General Informatics was founded in 2001 with assistance from the LSU Business & Technology Center. From the beginning, the company experienced continuous growth while maintaining a commitment to understanding the growing needs of clients. Both in technology and business, General Informatics provides cost-effective processes to provide turnkey IT services and solutions for clients. For more information, visit GenInf.com.