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Comerica Heads South
Ralph W. Babb Jr., chairman and CEO, said the company intends to diversify its customer base and extend its reach into the faster growing southern markets of
Babb noted that a significant percentage of Comerica's earnings are generated in those four markets, so the
In its news release last week, the company highlighted the fact that U.S. Census Bureau projections show two-thirds of all Americans will live in the southern and western
About 200 job positions relating to corporate functions will be moved to
"A lot of the expansions we announce are a result of those visits," Shore said. "But there's not a whole lot you can do if a company is not forthcoming and not willing to reveal that they are, in fact, considering a move. A company that's been here since the 1800s, you don't figure it's going to pick up and move. Clearly, they decided that their future was not necessarily going to be built in
Babb said the "vibrant and diversified" economies of Dallas, Houston and Austin — where Comerica has a collective 71 banking centers — will be helpful to Comerica as it seeks to continue attracting and retaining talented employees.
Had it become difficult to attract and retain talent to the Southwest Michigan region or
Company spokeswoman Sara Snyder said Comerica uses headhunters, referrals and networking to recruit experienced people. Nationally, the company has 308 positions open, and that number stays fairly static, she said.
"There have been recruiting challenges, but I don't think Comerica is alone in that," she said. "If you talk to colleges and headhunters, I don't think we're alone."
Though 200 Comerica jobs will go south, Jim Marosi, manager and vice president of investments at AG Edwards'
"I don't think there's any mystery to the fact that the southern and western parts of the country economically are in a little bit better shape than we are," Marosi said. "More than anything else, I think they're positioning themselves to benefit from that."
Paul Drueke, senior vice president and manager of the local Stifel, Nicolaus & Co. branch, said it's obvious that Comerica is just moving to where the growth is because they don't think the growth is going to be here in
Comerica expects the transition will be completed by the end of the third quarter and estimates the move will cost $15 million to $20 million over three years. Comerica received a $3.5 million grant from the Texas Enterprise Fund for its relocation efforts, as well as economic development grants from the city of
Even though corporate decision-making will now be done in