UPS, Blues City Brewery set to expand in Memphis

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Two major Memphis businesses, UPS and Blues City Brewery, plan to expand and add jobs with tax incentives approved Wednesday.

The Economic Development Growth Engine board approved $38 million in PILOT incentives for UPS, which will invest more than $216 million at its New Swinnea Road location at the Memphis airport.

The company, which employs more than 1,337 people at a combination air sort and ground sort hub in Memphis, plans a new automated parcel handling facility that would help increase capacity at its Memphis location, EDGE said. The project would also create 25 new supervisory jobs at an average base salary of $47,480.

EDGE said the investment will "secure Memphis’s place in the UPS network for years to come and ensure job growth and retention with the company."

Blues City Brewery was approved for a PILOT worth $3.6 million that will help the company invest $49 million in new manufacturing machinery and hire 155 people at an average base salary of $56,609.

The former Schlitz bottling plant currently employs 516, according to EDGE.

Plant manager Allen Welch said the upgrades will help the roughly 50-year-old facility keep up with ever-changing beer industry.

"We're trying to capture volume that is growing within our market," Welch said.

During the 12-year PILOT, the company asks for a nearly $3.7-million tax incentive. However, they are projecting a nearly $10-million property tax increase in the area over the next 12 years thanks to the improvements.

"I think it's critical for local businesses and local people to know that Blues City wants to be here in Memphis, and they want to continue to grow here in Memphis. Having the ability to do that is super exciting," Welch said.

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