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Gov. John Bel Edwards highlights IBM, Century Link, and Southern Lifestyle project in Monroe

8 months 1 week 1 day ago March 31, 2016 Mar 31, 2016 Thursday, March 31 2016 March 31, 2016 3:51 PM in News
Source: WBRZ

MONROE- Governor John Bel Edwards highlighted a ground breaking by IBM, CenturyLink and Southern Lifestyle for a 88-acre technology and mixed-use development site in North Louisiana.

The site, Century Village, will be home to IBM’s newly established Client Innovation Center in Monroe.

IBM will provide software technology services to clients and partner with CenturyLink on research, development and product innovation initiatives.

Southern Lifestyle Development will build a community anchored by IBM, and include residential, commercial and recreational space across U.S. Highway 165 from CenturyLink’s headquarters.

Louisiana Economic Development estimates that more than 800 jobs to be created from the project.

LED offered IBM a performance-based incentive package that also includes $7.7 million in performance-based grants to reimburse relocation, recruitment, training and operating costs of the Monroe center

Gov. John Bel Edwards said that he is proud the state is the home for the project.

“Our partnership with IBM, CenturyLink and Southern Lifestyle Development makes advancements like these possible, and we look forward to future opportunities to make a difference like this throughout Louisiana,” Edwards said.

The state will fund $4.5 million over 10 years to expand higher education programs and the number of annual computer science programs in the region.

The University of Louisiana at Monroe is expanding its computer science and computer information systems programs. In addition, Louisiana Tech and Grambling State University arte expanding technology programs as well.

“Louisiana is the right place for high-tech job growth with an exceptional education system, business environment and workforce to serve the needs of our clients,” Joanne Collins-Smee, general manager of IBM Globally Integrated Capabilities, said.

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