FedEx: Northern Nevada among nation’s development hot spots |

FedEx: Northern Nevada among nation’s development hot spots

John Seelmeyer

Resurgent interest in ground transportation helps drive interest in northern Nevada among national companies looking for distribution locations, says an executive of FedEx.

“It’s one of the most attractive areas we deal with right now.

It’s getting more and more interesting to our customers,” says Jo Ferreira, managing director of hub-area business development for Memphis-based FedEx.

Ferreira works with relocating and expanding companies, hoping to land them in locations where they’ll generate traffic for FedEx air and

ground services.

Ground transportation, she said in an interview last week, is a growing factor for companies that previously were interested primarily in the availability of air cargo services.

Service guarantees developed by most trucking companies during the past five years have been a key element in the resurgent interest in ground transportation, Ferreira said.”There’s more of a reliability factor than there ever has been before,” she said.

And trucking is cheaper than airfreight.

In that environment, Reno’s location on major highways that serve the entire West becomes particularly important.Northern Nevada gets additional boosts from state incentives for businesses as well as the availability of space for distribution centers, Ferreira said.

At the same time, she said air cargo services haven’t disappeared as a consideration for relocating and expanding companies.

She noted, for instance, that companies eying facilities in northern Nevada are attracted by a FedEx West Coast service that provides overnight service through the region.

Whether companies are interested primarily in ground transportation or air services, the search for new facilities is part of a historic shift in which companies want to be closer to their customers, Ferriera said.

Companies headquartered on the West Coast, for instance, have been searching for secondary distribution centers in the East to serve their customers more quickly and efficiently.

And the same trend brings East Coast companies to Reno and elsewhere in the West in their search for faster service, reduced shipping costs and improved inventory strategies.

In most instances, the FedEx executive said, companies look to add distribution facilities rather than move operations from one side of the nation to the other.

At any given time, Ferriera said, her unit at FedEx is working with 30 to 40 companies that are considering relocation or expansion plans.