FedEx to invest $1 billion into Memphis hub

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — FedEx has announced it will soon be investing more than $1 billion into the Memphis hub.

In a joint news conference, company chairman and CEO Fred Smith and Governor Bill Haslam said the plan is to modernize the current facilities and improve operations.

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam announces a more than $1 billion expansion project at the FedEx hub in Memphis.

"Modernization and expansion of the Memphis hub will ensure that we continue to provide outstanding service to our customers around the world and make this an even better place to work for the thousands of team members here who keep our operations running every day and night," said Smith.

The plan calls for the building of a larger sort facility as well as a bulk truck load building. They will also install state-of-the-art sort systems and a new area to handle oversized shipments.

The investment will also provide improved cooling systems and break rooms for employees.

"47 percent of all of FedEx's business worldwide happens right here," Governor Bill Haslam said.

Gov. Haslam made it clear, "They could land these planes and transfer these packages anywhere in the country. We're thrilled and grateful that that happens in Memphis."

The project includes a new large sort facility, installation of state of the art sort systems, construction of a bulk truck load building, new area to improve handling of oversize shipment and an improved work space for employees that includes better cooling and break rooms.

David Cunningham, President and CEO of FedEx Express talked about long term changes.

"There will be more technical jobs that are going to be apart of this hub. As you add aircraft you add modern technology, sort systems and things like that that. You need more skilled support members that will be able to support that operation," Cunningham said.

"As the Memphis area’s largest employer, and a major economic driver across the state, this investment reflects FedEx’s continued commitment to Tennessee and will benefit current employees and the future workforce for years to come," Haslam said.

This investment shows FedEx's belief in the bluff city.

Mark Herbison, senior Vice President of economic development with the Memphis Chamber of Commerce, says other companies looking at Memphis like seeing these kind of investments.

"We really have the most robust capability as far as overnight shipping services in the whole world. So if you're a company anywhere in the country, most cities you've got to drop off your good for next morning delivery by 6 or 7 in the evening. Here, you can go even past midnight sometimes with FedEx," Herbison said.

Construction is expected to begin in 2019 and be completed by 2025.

FedEx currently has 11,000 team members at its Memphis hub and 163 aircraft gates is the largest sort facility in the FedEx network. FedEx employs an estimated total of 30,000 people in the Memphis area.