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Economic Development In the News

Entrepreneurship and Innovation Grant Program Flyer

New Developments in the Cumberland Area
Developments in the Cumberland Area

This map details the economic impact of the developments that have occurred in and around  the Cumberland CID since 2013.

In The News

March 19, 2021: Cobb Chamber COVID-19 Survey

The Cobb Chamber is a long standing partner that is here to help you with your business needs and to help our community mitigate risk, take advantage of opportunities, and better understand the changes impacting us all. Today, as our society and regional economy are changing rapidly due to the pandemic, we want to be able to assist in how we innovate, how we work, and ultimately how we approach life. The challenges we are facing a multifaceted including with free enterprise, entrepreneurship, diversity and talent, healthcare, infrastructure, and innovation, to name a few.

A year ago, we reached out to you to find out how we could best support you in the early stages of the pandemic. Based upon your feedback we were successful in launching a number of initiatives including:

  • A website portal with a variety of resources to assist you and pivot during the pandemic;
  • 20 educational webinars about topics ranging from tax credits to PPP to protecting your employees and customers as you prepare to reopen;
  • Advocating for the PPP program and other financial assistance for industries most in need;
  • Creating a Reopening Guide Toolkit with public health guidance for businesses safely reopening;
  • Launching Operation Meal Plan in partnership with Cobb Community Foundation to help restaurants keep workers employed and provide non-profits with meals;
  • Launching Cobb Shops to Go to help drive demand to your business during the shut downs;
  • Launching to help you find the talent you need to reopen; and
  • Working with the county to distribute $50M in small business grants.

We are inviting you to participate with us again on a survey that will collect your insight and feedback to help us plan for the next stage of the recovery and help us get our economy prospering for all businesses. We encourage you to take your time, be creative and help us preserve and foster a strong business climate well into the future.

To take the survey, please click here.

Thank you for your time and your commitment to Cobb County.

February 10, 2021: Freshly Inc. to Open First Southeastern U.S. Facility in Austell, Create 250 Jobs

ATLANTA – February 10, 2021 - Governor Brian P. Kemp today announced that fresh-prepared meal delivery service Freshly Inc. is investing $3.2 million in opening a distribution facility in Austell. The company will bring on 150 employees during the initial operating phase and plans to hire at least 250 at the Cobb facility by the end of 2021. The 134,000-square-foot facility will be Freshly’s largest dedicated order-assembly facility to date and will begin operating in mid-February.

“It’s a pleasure to welcome this rapidly growing meal delivery service brand to the Peach State,” said Governor Kemp. “Our robust logistics infrastructure and highly skilled workforce have been critical to attracting new jobs and opportunities, which continue to put hardworking Georgians back to work.”

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September 17, 2020: Papa John’s to open HQ in Atlanta, create 200 jobs

Pizza delivery company Papa John’s plans to move its global headquarters to Atlanta from Kentucky next year, adding 200 jobs as it expands and rides a huge surge in business, thanks to the coronavirus.

Papa John’s International will relocate development, human resources, menu innovation and other departments to the Atlanta area from its hometown of Louisville. The company’s IT and logistics departments will remain there.

Company president and CEO Rob Lynch told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution the COVID-19 pandemic has helped Papa John’s have the best year in its history. As people work and attend school from home, sales have soared.


September 1, 2020: Georgia Named ‘Top State for Doing Business’ for 7th Consecutive Year

... Governor Brian P. Kemp announced that Georgia has been named the “Top State for Doing Business” for the seventh year in a row by Area Development. The executive publication’s annual poll of nearly fifty leading site consulting firms from across the U.S. weighs thirteen different factors to make this determination. In addition to Top State, Georgia earned a No. 1 ranking in the category of cooperative and responsive state government.

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June 2, 2020: Apply for a SelectCobb Small Business Relief Grant

Cobb County Government is partnering with SelectCobb to offer the county’s small businesses a funding opportunity to help mitigate financial hardships created by the coronavirus pandemic. The SelectCobb Small Business Relief Grants provide up to $20,000-$40,000 grants for small businesses based in Cobb County to use on personnel, rent, utilities, and acquiring PPE to ensure the safety of their employees. Applications open on June 8 at 10 a.m. on The deadline for submissions is June 26 at 5 p.m.

Small businesses must meet the following requirements:

  • Business must be an existing for-profit corporation, partnership, or sole proprietorship;
  • Business headquarters or primary location must be within Cobb County;
  • Business must have 100 or fewer full-time, W-2 employees, i.e., employees working at least 30 hours per week or 130 hours per month;
  • Business must have been in continuous operation for a minimum of 1 year prior to March 13, 2020;
  • Business must have a current business license issued by Cobb County Government, City of Acworth, City of Austell, City of Kennesaw, City of Marietta, City of Powder Springs, or City of Smyrna;
  • Business must be current on all local taxes;
  • The business may be home-based or located in an owned or leased commercial space;
  • Business must certify if they have received PPP funds as of the time of application submittal; and
  • Business cannot be a publicly-traded company.
  • Ineligible Businesses Include: Gambling Institutions, Multi-Level Marketing Organizations, Real Estate Investment Firms (REITS), Adult Entertainment

Each application will be reviewed by SelectCobb staff to ensure that all eligibility requirements are met. All eligible applications will then be reviewed by an independent committee responsible for selecting grant recipients.

For a full list of eligibility requirements and more information about the application process, visit

May 4, 2020: Cobb gives Home Depot a hand in office expansion

Home improvement giant Home Depot has cast a wide net in searching for help expanding its Cobb headquarters.

Last week, the county’s governing board voted 4-1 to give the company $135,000 in exchange for the creation of 600 jobs over a 10-year period. West Cobb Commissioner Keli Gambrill was the only vote in opposition.

The vote by the Cobb Board of Commissioners came on the heels of an April 23 meeting of the Development Authority of Cobb County, which signaled its willingness to consider the company’s request for $46 million in bonds by passing an inducement resolution.


Read the Full Article. 

January 26, 2020: Small businesses share Cobb County support

Meet the brains behind the three Cobb County businesses that received a $10,000 grant last summer from the recently created Entrepreneurship and Innovation Incentive Program.

Source: Atlanta Business Chronicle,

Continue reading... (ABC subscription required)

January 22, 2020: Georgia Earns Top Spot for Regional Workforce Development

Atlanta, GA – Governor Brian P. Kemp today announced Georgia earned the top ranking for workforce development in the South Atlantic Region, according to Site Selection Magazine's 2020 Workforce Development Rankings.

“As I've said in communities throughout the Peach State, the hardworking Georgians who make up our workforce are the foundation of our competitive edge in attracting business - both in the Southeast and across the country,” said Governor Kemp. “I’m excited that Site Selection Magazine has recognized yet another reason why Georgia is the best state in which to live, work, and raise a family.

Continue reading...

October 29, 2019: Powder Springs breaks ground on new sports complex

The city of Power Springs broke ground Tuesday on a new 22-acre sports complex. Officials say the $10-million facility will include an indoor soccer field, concession area, and a bar. The project is estimated to be complete by August 2020.

Watch the Fox 5 news report by clicking here.

The city of Power Springs broke ground Tuesday on a new 22-acre sports complex.

September 23, 2019: Economic Development surveys Cobb businesses

The Cobb County Economic Development Division, SelectCobb, representatives from the Georgia Department of Economic Development, Metro Atlanta Chamber, WorkSource Cobb, KSU’s Small Business Development Center, the cities of Acworth and Kennesaw and Georgia Power recently participated in the bi-annual Business Walks Program for District 1.

The initiative is dedicated to collecting feedback on business retention and expansion in Cobb’s business community.

Read the Full Article

Source: Marietta Daily Journal

September 16, 2019: Cobb Development Authority approves $50,000 for Innovation Grant Program

With a unanimous vote from its grants committee, the Cobb County Development Authority on Monday doled out $50,000 for the county’s Innovation Grants Program, a county-initiated program funding startup businesses in Cobb.

The development authority’s three-member grants committee is allowed to award grants of up to $100,000 without approval from the full authority.

After a presentation from Michael Hughes, Cobb County’s economic development division manager, committee member Jamala McFadden said she was excited to fund the Innovation Grants Program for a second year. The development authority awarded $50,000 to the program in July 2018.

Committee member Bob Morgan agreed, adding that, unlike the previous two items, the grant program aligns perfectly with the committee’s purpose.

Read the Full Article.


August 20, 2019: Novelis and Georgia Institute of Technology Establish Novelis Innovation Hub at Georgia Tech

Novelis and Georgia Institute of Technology Establish Novelis Innovation Hub at Georgia Tech

Company commits $2.5 million to initiate transformational innovation through sponsored research and philanthropic support


ATLANTA, August 20, 2019 – Novelis Inc., the world leader in aluminum sheet products, technologies and recycling, today announced a new collaboration with the Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) to establish the Novelis Innovation Hub at Georgia Tech. The company commits $2.5 million to initiate research, faculty, student, and educational program support. The collaboration will promote basic and translational research, innovative business models, and related educational endeavors at Georgia Tech and will serve as a cross-functional hub connecting Novelis’ technical and business innovators with Georgia Tech’s students and faculty.

“We are fortunate to have one of the world’s premier research institutions in our hometown,” said Steve Fisher, President and CEO, Novelis, Inc. “As we pursue our purpose of shaping a sustainable world together, we have a tremendous opportunity to collaborate with Georgia Tech to help train a new generation of the best and brightest students who are poised to advance the frontiers of engineering and research for the betterment of society.”

With the Novelis funding, Georgia Tech intends to recruit a senior interdisciplinary faculty member to serve as the director of the Novelis Innovation Hub. The director is expected to be identified and in place by the 2020 academic year.

“The collaboration with Novelis demonstrates our continued focus on providing students and faculty with unmatched academic and practical experiences through the creation of innovative corporate relationships,” said Dr. Chaouki Abdallah, Executive Vice President for Research, Georgia Institute of Technology. “Our expertise in material science and advanced manufacturing, and business and AI systems is among the very best in global higher education and we look forward to working with Novelis’ scientific, engineering and business innovators to develop new, industry- and world-changing solutions.”

Under the terms of the agreement, Novelis will annually identify sponsored research and/or provide a list of innovation needs, for which Georgia Tech faculty will be invited to offer proposals. An advisory board comprised of representatives from Georgia Tech and Novelis will evaluate the proposals that utilize the Novelis funding and external funding opportunities as well as foster future technology collaborations.

“Establishing closer ties with Georgia Tech provides tremendous benefits for both the students and the company,” said Todd Summe, Chief Research and Development Officer, Novelis, Inc. “Our combined efforts will advance our mission to lead the aluminum industry as the partner of choice for innovative solutions. At the same time, we are helping fill the industry’s talent pipeline with outstanding innovators. We see this as just the next step in our partnership, which can serve as a model for transformative innovation across Novelis, the Aditya Birla Group, and our industry at large.”

With this investment, Novelis is building upon long-standing ties with Georgia Tech. Historically, the company has provided internships and full time employment as well as mentorship to more than fifty graduate students over the years. Novelis has consistently funded sponsored research at Georgia Tech and research equipment, most recently co-investing in additive manufacturing in the Advanced Manufacturing Pilot Facility. In addition, the company provides funds for graduate student research with renowned faculty and for Georgia Tech’s “InVenture Prize Challenge,” a student/recent graduate competition to foster creativity, invention and entrepreneurship.

About Novelis

Novelis, Inc. is driven by its purpose to shape a sustainable world together. As a global leader in innovative products and services and the world's largest recycler of aluminum, we partner with customers in the automotive, beverage can and specialties industries to deliver solutions that maximize the benefits of lightweight aluminum throughout North America, Europe, Asia and South America. The company is headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, operates 23 facilities in nine countries, has approximately 11,000 employees and recorded $12.3 billion in revenue for its 2019 fiscal year. Novelis is a subsidiary of Hindalco Industries Limited, an industry leader in aluminum and copper, and the metals flagship company of the Aditya Birla Group, a multinational conglomerate based in Mumbai, India. For more information, visit


Novelis Media Contact: Michael Touhill

+1 404 580 5234  

July 10, 2019: Home Depot Board Cutting Ceremony

 Governor Brian Kemp came to Cobb for another exciting economic announcement. Home Depot doesn’t just cut a ribbon to open a new facility, they use a reciprocating saw! A new complex opened in the Cumberland area will house hundreds of employees, many of them new to Cobb, mostly doing digital and high-tech jobs. See the ceremony as the new HD Pennant Park facility comes online!

Click here to watch the ceremony.

Photo of stakeholders at the Home Depot Board Cutting Ceremony

June 27, 2019: Innovative Businesses Receive Grant Funds from Cobb County Economic Development

The Cobb County Board of Commissioners approved a grant dispersion to three Cobb County businesses at the Board of Commissioners meeting on Tuesday Night. VNDE Blockchain, Clutch Creations, and Brilliant Coworking were each awarded funds from the Cobb County Economic Development Division’s Entrepreneurship and Innovation Incentive Program.

“I’m really excited for this,” says Kristi Frank, CEO and Founder of Clutch Creations Inc.
“I grew up here and I want to help other entrepreneurs and be more involved in the County. This is a wonderful opportunity for myself, all women entrepreneurs, and others who want to pursue their dreams.” Kristi plans on using the funds for team expansion, philanthropic opportunities, and marketing.

Read the full Article.

May 29, 2019: Plethora to Open Manufacturing Facility in Cobb County

Atlanta, GA – Governor Brian P. Kemp announced today that Plethora, a leader in on-demand manufacturing of quality custom prototypes and end-production parts, will create 250 jobs and invest more than $17 million in a new production facility in Marietta.

“We are excited to welcome Plethora to Georgia,” said Governor Brian Kemp. “Our pro-business climate, abundant and advanced workforce, global accessibility, and access to world-class colleges and universities are only a few of the reasons why manufacturers are finding success in the Peach State. Over the past ten years, Georgia’s manufacturing GDP growth has outpaced the national rate, and with announcements like this one, we don’t see any signs of it slowing down.”

Since opening in 2012, Plethora has experienced rapid growth and reached maximum production capacity in its San Francisco, CA facility. By expanding operations to Georgia, Plethora will be able to further its mission to help clients innovate and get to market faster.

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January 18, 2019: Atlanta Inno: Biotech company moves to Cobb County

A Santa Barbara, Calif., biotech company has moved its headquarters to Cobb County, bringing with it a $5 million investment into the community and more than 500 tech jobs.

Read the full Atlanta Business Chronicle article

November 5, 2018: Site Selection ranks Georgia's business climate No. 1 for sixth straight year

Gov. Nathan Deal today announced that Georgia's business climate has been ranked No. 1 in the nation for the sixth consecutive year by Site Selection, a leading economic development trade publication. According to Site Selection, Georgia is the first state to hold this ranking for six consecutive years under leadership by the same governor.

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September 20, 2018: Georgia named No.1 for 5 consecutive years

ATLANTA – September 20, 2018 –Gov. Nathan Deal today announced that Georgia has been named the No. 1 state for business for the fifth year in a row by Area Development, a leading corporate site selection and facility planning publication. Deal was joined by Area Development publisher and president Dennis J. Shea to make the announcement at the 2018 State of the Ports Address in Savannah.

Read the full article

August 2018: Company Aims for New Heights in Cobb

An industrial conglomerate is bringing part of its elevator business and more than 800 new jobs to the Cumberland area, officials announced in July.

ThyssenKrupp leadership has announced the building of its new offices and an approximately 420-foot-tall quality control facility located on Circle 75 Parkway, near The Battery Atlanta in Cobb County.

“So many people from the state to local levels have worked hard to make this announcement happen,” Cobb Commission Chairman Mike Boyce said. “We welcome ThyssenKrupp with enthusiasm, and they will soon learn why Cobb County is a place where you expect the best and can safely work, live, play and pursue your dreams.”

ThyssenKrupp already has offices in Marietta, Kennesaw and Acworth, but these facilities will represent a much larger investment in Cobb. They will bring an estimated 863 jobs to the county, with an average wage of $100,000. That’s an estimated capital investment of $264 million. The final completion date for this project is scheduled for winter 2020.

Read the full article

[source: CobbLine Monthly Newsletter]

July 20, 2018: Cobb entrepreneurs to benefit from grant

Cobb entrepreneurs and innovators may be eligible to receive portions of a $50,000 grant.

That money will be given by the Development Authority of Cobb County to support the new Entrepreneurship & Innovation Incentive Program.

“The purpose of this incentive program is to provide services, assistance and/or incentives to entrepreneurs and innovators who are in high-skilled fields to assist them in growing their business, creating jobs and maintaining their presence in the county,” wrote Cobb Community Development Agency Director Dana Johnson in a July 10 memo to Cobb County Manager Rob Hosack.

To qualify for this incentive program, a business must:

have participated in the IgniteHQ business incubator program or a program operated by an affiliate or partner of IgniteHQ, be a spinoff technology associated with the Georgia Tech Research Institute or have graduated from an entrepreneurial training program

be an existing business in Cobb County and

agree to remain in Cobb County for the three years after the expiration of the mandatory incentive agreement.

In partnership with Kennesaw State University, Cobb’s Competitive Edge and the Cobb Chamber, IgniteHQ at 57 Waddell St. SE, two blocks off the Marietta Square, “connects startups and entrepreneurs with international accelerators, funding opportunities and talent to scale globally,” according to the website at “We accelerate startups, cultivate job growth and provide market expansion resources in the Southeast.”

Companies eligible for the entrepreneurship and innovation incentive program may be eligible for services, assistance and/or a cash grant from the Cobb Innovation Fund.

Read the full article


March 5, 2018: Tourism Remains the Number One Economic Driver

Cobb County, Ga. — (March 5, 2018) — Travel and tourism continues to be an economic powerhouse for Cobb County, with $3.05 billion in economic impact and supporting more than 35,000 jobs in 2016. Tourism is the leading industry in Cobb and has significant economic impact.

A study, performed by Robert Lann Consulting, LLC, showed a 7.9% increase over the previous $2.8 billion in economic impact and a 15.8% increase over the previous 30,000 jobs. According to the Georgia Department of Economic Development-Tourism, tourism created $78.86 million in state tax revenues and generated $46.67 million for Cobb and its cities in local tax revenues in the last year. Each Cobb household would need to be taxed an additional $461 per year to replace taxes generated by tourism activity.

“I am thrilled to see an increase,” said Brooks Mathis, Chairman of Cobb Travel & Tourism. “As we work with our partners and showcase Cobb as a unique tourism destination, I believe we will continue to see our tourism industry flourish.”

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, for every $1 spent in one of the county’s hotel properties, $3 is spent in the community on dining, transportation, entertainment, and more. “Tourism continues to economically impact Cobb in ways that are undeniable,” said Holly Quinlan, President & CEO of Cobb Travel & Tourism.

“The unique diversity of what our county has to offer is one that is hard to beat,” said Quinlan. “Each day we see tourism transforming our community into a place that sets the standard for a viable and prosperous hospitality industry.” By the year 2020, tourism in Cobb is projected to have an economic impact of more than $4 billion.

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January 28, 2018: South Cobb County a 'hidden secret' for area planners and development leaders

January 2018: Cobb County: Managing the Flow

Municipalities are increasingly turning to managed lanes to improve traffic flow and increase funding options. These solutions include high-occupancy vehicle (HOV), express, reversible and toll lanes. The 29.7 miles of managed lanes scheduled to open later this year along interstates 75 and 575 will continue to propel Cobb County as a desirable locale for business, education and play.

A comprehensive article highlighting Cobb County's transportation success, evolving and flourishing sports scene, economic development growth initiatives, top-rated Kennesaw State University, expanding cities and community improvement districts, transit and local gems.

Read the full article


January 19, 2017: Beverage distribution company seeking bonds for south Cobb project

CUMBERLAND — A Fulton County beverage distributor is asking the Cobb County Development Authority to issue up to $65 million in bonds to help them build a distribution center in south Cobb.

Officials with Empire Distributors, a wholesale distributor of alcoholic beverages throughout the Southeast, project to have more than 500 employees at the facility, which would be built on about 70 acres on Hartman Road near Factory Shoals Road.

Many of those positions would be relocated out of Fulton, but as many as 90 or more would likely be new hires.

Authority members on Tuesday approved an inducement resolution for the bonds. The resolution indicates that the authority is willing to issue the taxable revenue bonds, but Empire would have to come back before the authority and have a final bond resolution approved.

“The availability of this present bond issue being requested, as well as other economic incentives, are fundamental — factors to their decision to relocate and invest in this new facility,” said Tim Ramsey, an attorney who represented Empire at Tuesday’s authority meeting.

The facility would become the headquarters of the company, which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Texas-based McClane Company, a worldwide supply chain company. The facility would be about 600,000 square feet, including about 50,000 square feet of office space.

It would be built within the South Cobb Enterprise Zone, an area created by the county in 2013 to spark new business development, existing business expansion and new jobs through tax breaks.

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December 15, 2017: Cumberland CID Unveils New Plans for $2.2 Billion Direct Investment through Community Development

Community Improvement District to implement infrastructure expansion with revitalization programs promising a $3.6 billion effect on Cobb County

 Atlanta, GA (December 18, 2017) – The Cumberland Community Improvement District (CID) released today Blueprint Cumberland 3.0, a set of revitalization programs focusing on access, connectivity and placemaking. Approaching its 30-year anniversary, CID leadership felt this milestone provided the opportunity to reflect on the development and growth the district has seen over the last three decades. Blueprint Cumberland 3.0, the culmination of a year-long study, refines the framework within which community projects are selected, designed and constructed to make the Cumberland area a more accessible and attractive place to work, visit and live.

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