Report estimates Purdue Research Park annual economic impact for Indiana is $1.3 billion

June 14, 2011

Purdue University and Purdue Research Foundation President France A. Córdova speaks at the 2009 dedication of the Herman and Heddy Kurz Purdue Technology Center along with Kurz (at left) and West Lafayette Mayor John Dennis. The center is one of several technology incubators in the four-site Purdue Research Park network, managed by the Purdue Research Foundation, where startups and established companies are based. An independent study compiled by Thomas P. Miller and Associates of Indianapolis reports that employees in Purdue Research Park network companies earn an average annual wage of $63,000, which is 65 percent higher than the state average. (Purdue University file photo/Andrew Hancock)

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INDIANAPOLIS; WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind.; MERRILLVILLE, Ind.; and NEW ALBANY, Ind. - An independent study reports that the Purdue Research Park network provides an annual economic impact of $1.3 billion to Indiana's economy, officials announced Tuesday (June 14).

The report, compiled by Thomas P. Miller and Associates of Indianapolis, states that the Purdue Research Park network is one of the largest private employers in the state, has invested more than $584 million in infrastructure, provides $48 million in annual tax revenue for the state and employees in a park-based company earn an average annual wage of $63,000.

The Purdue Research Park, which is managed by the nonprofit Purdue Research Foundation, is the largest business incubator in Indiana and the largest university-affiliated incubator complex in the country. The park has four locations across the state with more than 200 companies and 4,000 employees.

"As part of Purdue Research Park's 50th anniversary, we engaged an independent research firm to quantify our economic contributions to Indiana," said Joseph B. Hornett, senior vice president, treasurer and COO of the Purdue Research Foundation. "This study is the first of its kind for the Purdue Research Foundation. From the creation of 4,000 new jobs to the nearly $50 million in federal and developmental grants for small business, the results provide an important milestone of how Purdue is giving back to the state."

The study reports:

      * $1.3 billion annual impact for Indiana.

      * $48 million contributed to state and local taxes.

      * $49 million in federal research and development grants for small businesses brought to the state since 1987.

      * High-tech, high-quality jobs paying an average annual salary of $63,000 - 65 percent higher than the Indiana average.

      * Combined, the park network is a top-20 private employer in Indiana.

"It is important to note that the contribution of Purdue Research Foundation and Purdue Research Park network is in addition to Purdue University's economic contributions to the state," Hornett said.

A Dow AgroSciences researcher conducts work in an 11,000-square-foot greenhouse dedicated in September 2010 at the Purdue Research Park of West Lafayette. Dow AgroSciences is one of several established companies recruited to the four-site Purdue Research Park network, bringing jobs to Indiana. An independent study compiled by Thomas P. Miller and Associates of Indianapolis reports that the Purdue Research Park network, managed by the Purdue Research Foundation, has an annual state economic impact of more than $1 billion. (Purdue Research Foundation file photo)

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While closely affiliated and collaborative with Purdue University, the Purdue Research Foundation and Purdue Research Park are self-supporting and operate as separate entities from the university.

Mitch Roob, CEO of the Indiana Economic Development Corporation and Indiana Secretary of Commerce, said his office works closely with the Purdue Research Foundation to create startups and recruit companies to Indiana.

"We have a strong collaboration with the Purdue Research Foundation and have worked closely on economic development endeavors, including recruiting Scale Computing and Advion BioSciences to the state, as well as supporting expansion of existing companies such as Dow AgroSciences opening a research and development facility in the Purdue Research Park of West Lafayette," Roob said. "Their activities in the realm of economic growth and job creation, particularly in the high-tech and life sciences areas, have been keys in our goal to diversify the state's economy."

The more than 200 companies in the Purdue Research Park network range in employee count from fewer than five for new startups to more than 200 for more established companies.

Examples of companies based in Purdue Research Park include:

      * Cook Biotech Inc., a life sciences company based on a Purdue discovery and acquired by the Cook Group Inc., has about 130 employees.

      * Endocyte Inc., another life sciences company based on a Purdue discovery and one that began publicly trading on NASDAQ in February, has about 65 employees.

      * Scale Computing Inc., a company recruited from the San Francisco area and based in the Purdue Research Park of Indianapolis, has about 50 employees with plans to double its workforce in the next year.

State Rep. Randy Truitt said the four-park network has made an impact at the state, national and international levels.

"The Purdue Research Park network provides a valuable foundation for startups and expanding companies where new discoveries are commercialized into viable products that help our state through job creation, and that help address global challenges," Truitt said. "For example, the wound healing technology from Cook Biotech has been used on more than a million people around the world, and the new drug targeting and imaging diagnostics being developed by Endocyte show great promise in changing the way we treat cancer."

State Rep. Sheila Klinker also is a strong supporter of the Purdue Research Park network, and the City of West Lafayette and Greater Lafayette Commerce have provided economic development support to the Purdue Research Park through tax abatements and training grants.

"The results of this economic impact report are no surprise to me because Purdue Research Foundation and its Purdue Research Park network have been valuable partners for economic development for West Lafayette and the surrounding region," said West Lafayette Mayor John Dennis. "The positions created in the park network are high-tech jobs providing unique opportunities to our residents and in our efforts to recruit cutting-edge companies to West Lafayette."

The Purdue Research Park has been recognized by state, national and international organizations. In 2010 the National Association of Business Incubators honored the Purdue Research Park Entrepreneurship Academy with the Incubator Innovation Award. In 2008 the International Economic Development Council presented three first-place awards for excellence in economic development in the areas of entrepreneurship, partnerships with educational institutions and technology-based economic development. In 2004 the Association of University Research Parks (AURP) recognized the Purdue Research Park with its top Outstanding Science and Research Park Award.

"AURP is proud of all that has been accomplished by the Purdue Research Park, which is a huge economic engine - not just for the state of Indiana, but even more importantly for the United States," said Eileen Walker, a board member of the Association of University Research Parks. "The Purdue Research Park is an outstanding example of why America needs research and science parks. By creating the jobs of the future, research and science parks lead the way toward prosperity for our country."

Thomas P. Miller and Associates compiled the information for the report during a five-month period using analysis that includes both "traditional" and "new economy" impacts. The data includes information from surveys completed by nearly 80 percent of park-based companies, compilation of public records, fiscal impacts based on multiplier analysis and more than 30 personal interviews with public and private leaders. The full report and supporting information can be viewed at "Driving Today's New Economy: An Economic Impact Study of the Purdue Research Park Network" website at http://www.prf.org/economic/2011/index.asp

About Purdue Research Foundation

The Purdue Research Foundation is a private, nonprofit foundation created to advance the mission of Purdue University. Established in 1930, the foundation accepts gifts; administers trusts; funds research, scholarships and grants; and acquires property on behalf of Purdue. In the 1990s, the foundation was charged with helping the university in the realm of economic development. The Purdue Research Foundation oversees the Purdue Research Park, which is the largest university-affiliated business incubator in the country. In addition to the Purdue Research Park of West Lafayette, the foundation has established technology parks in other locations around Indiana including Indianapolis, Merrillville and New Albany.

Media contact:

Cynthia Sequin, 765-588-3340, casequin@prf.org

Sources:

Joseph B. Hornett, 765-588-1040, jbhornett@prf.org

Mitch Roob, 317-232-8873, bwest@iedc.IN.gov

Eileen Walker, eileenwlaker@me.com

James Wheeler, Thomas P. Miller and Associates LLC, 317-489-3429, jwheeler@tpma-inc.com