Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear announced technology engineering firm STEP CG, LLC plans to expand its headquarters in Kenton County into new office space, generating at least 83 high-wage jobs and furthering his administration’s goal to create quality employment opportunities for Kentuckians.
“Our state is home to some of the most committed, skilled workers in the nation, and I am thrilled STEP CG will create even more jobs for Kentucky’s dedicated workforce,” Gov. Beshear said. “We are fortunate to have a company like STEP CG headquartered in the commonwealth, and I look forward to even more growth for the company in the future.”
STEP CG, a nationwide technology engineering firm currently headquartered at W. 5th St. in Covington, will expand operations into 50 E. RiverCenter Blvd. on the Ohio River, investing nearly $5.3 million in the project. The new location provides nearly 7,000 square feet of additional office space as the company looks to expand due to growing demand for its services. The investment will include a well-equipped Executive Briefing Center showcasing innovative IT services for clients, training opportunities for technical engineers and a collaborative working space.
“This project will allow us to retain and continue to grow the most talented team in the industry, who are constantly innovating and delivering next-generation technology solutions for our customers,” said Rob Huff, STEP CG founder and president. “We are especially pleased to partner with the commonwealth of Kentucky, the city of Covington, Kenton County, Corporex, Northern Kentucky Tri-ED and many others in Northern Kentucky and Greater Cincinnati on this pivotal move for our young company.”
STEP CG provides expertise in networking, voice, security and professional services. The company services a range of industries that includes health care, education, manufacturing, financial, retail, legal, government and service providers. The company has been headquartered in Northern Kentucky since 2015.
This month’s Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) meeting produced six Gov. Beshear-announced projects in five counties – Barren, Hancock, Hart, Kenton and Warren. Those projects total more than $274 million in planned investment and 545 full-time Kentucky jobs.
Sen. Christian McDaniel, of Taylor Mill, said he is grateful for the company’s commitment to Kentucky.
“I would like to extend my gratitude to STEP CG for their continued investment in Northern Kentucky’s workforce,” Sen. McDaniel said. “This expansion in Covington demonstrates their ongoing confidence in the workforce and business climate in the commonwealth.”
Rep. Buddy Wheatley, of Covington, said the project is part of a larger effort to create job opportunities in the region.
“Covington is seeing a true renaissance downtown, and announcements like STEP CG's show why,” Rep. Wheatley said. “I want to thank the company's leaders for investing further in our community and creating these high-paying jobs while raising our profile in this important industry. I also appreciate our local and state officials working together to help STEP CG move forward. This is great news for Covington.”
Covington Mayor Joe Meyer was encouraged by the company’s decision to remain in the community.
“We are delighted that Covington-based STEP CG has decided to remain right here and grow its business in Covington,” Mayor Meyer said. “City staff has been working with the company and regional partners to address their talent needs and create opportunities for Covington residents to be a part of STEP CG’s future success.”
Kenton County Judge-Executive Kris Knochelmann said the local workforce has the skills to serve tech companies like STEP CG.
“I congratulate STEP CG on their success and thank them for committing to grow and add new jobs in Kenton County,” Judge-Executive Knochelmann said. “High-growth technology companies like STEP CG are finding the talent they need in Northern Kentucky and an urban, walkable community that’s attractive to their workforce in Covington.”
Lee Crume, president and CEO of Northern Kentucky Tri-ED, pointed to the importance of working with existing businesses.
“We’re thrilled that we were able to support the growth of a Northern Kentucky company and retain STEP CG in the region,” Crume said. “Helping companies like Step CG, an existing network engineering firm, find a new headquarters location where it can expand is a core service that Tri-ED provides to our clients.”
To encourage the investment and job growth in the community, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) on Thursday preliminarily approved a 10-year incentive agreement with the company under the Kentucky Business Investment program. The performance-based agreement can provide up to $900,000 in tax incentives based on the company’s investment of $5.29 million and annual targets of:
• Creation and maintenance of 83 Kentucky-resident, full-time jobs across 10 years
• Paying an average hourly wage of $38 including benefits across those jobs
By meeting its annual targets over the agreement term, the company can be eligible to keep a portion of the new tax revenue it generates. The company may claim eligible incentives against its income tax liability and/or wage assessments. Further, the company plans to create a total of 150 jobs across the 10 years, beyond the 83 estimated to be Kentucky-resident jobs.
In addition, STEP CG can receive resources from the Kentucky Skills Network. Through the Kentucky Skills Network, companies can receive no-cost recruitment and job placement services, reduced-cost customized training and job training incentives.