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Cat chooses Deerfield

Thursday, Apr 20, 2017

* Tribune

Caterpillar will move its global headquarters from Peoria to north suburban Deerfield, choosing not to follow the path of other large companies that have relocated to Chicago.

It’s a decision steeped in irony: The equipment-maker’s future Deerfield home was only available because of another company’s decision to move to Chicago.

Caterpillar will take over the former headquarters of premium spirits maker Beam Suntory, which announced plans last year to move its 450 employees and global headquarters to Chicago’s Merchandise Mart, joining corporations including McDonald’s, Motorola Solutions, Kraft Heinz, Wilson Sporting Goods and Conagra Brands that have recently moved or made plans to relocate downtown. Beam Suntory’s move will be completed by the end of June. […]

Most of Caterpillar’s 12,000 Peoria-area employees will not relocate. About 100 will move to the new Deerfield headquarters this year. By mid-2018, Caterpillar expects to have about 300 employees in Deerfield in corporate roles, including executives and other corporate employees in finance, accounting and communications, said spokeswoman Corrie Scott.

* Crain’s

Incentives, while they were discussed, did not drive Caterpillar’s decision, said spokeswoman Corrie Scott. The Deerfield site will give employees who are relocating from Peoria as well as future recruits more housing and educational options, while still offering convenient access to the city via commuter rail, she said.

“To our minds, this is kind of the best of both worlds,” she said.

The national media has overstated the trend of corporations moving downtown to chase millennial workers, said John “Jack” Boyd, founder and principal of a namesake site selection firm in Princeton, N.J. Many of those workers are postponing a move to the suburbs, rather than rejecting it. Moreover, as more companies do move downtown, “at some point there’s inflationary cost pressures” that make the market less attractive.

“Suburbs in selected markets are doing very well, thank you, including Deerfield,” he said.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

24 Comments
  1. - Not Rich - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 9:35 am:

    Does Deerfield have term limits??


  2. - RNUG - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 9:51 am:

    At least they are still in Illinois … even if they aren’t playing in Peoria. /partial s


  3. - Six Degrees of Separation - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 9:53 am:

    Of the millenials I know who lived in the city, a good 80-90% moved out to the suburbs as soon as their children were of school age. Other than the supposed “young professional” angle, a Loop office theoretically helps attract workers from every area of the city and suburbs due to the more flexible transportation options, while a suburban location makes a 15-20 minute commute possible if you can afford to live near where you work.


  4. - Honeybear - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 9:57 am:

    A wee bit touchy about insentives. What were they?
    How much in EDGE? 50-100 million?
    I don’t think they should be given anything for 300 currently existing employees to move into an already existing and business ready building.

    Maybe DCEO would be kind enough to reveal how much money is being siphoned off from going into our state coffers

    We have a hole in our milk pail.
    Cat is lapping up

    Also I’d also like to know how they got around the “but for” clause.


  5. - Arthur Andersen - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 10:02 am:

    For the sake of Cat employees, let’s hope the Beam folks left plenty of sample merchandise lying around. Not a bad location-close to Palwaukee for the big kahunas who don’t have to fly United.


  6. - wordslinger - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 10:03 am:

    Nothing special about that building. Must be close to the big dogs new cribs.

    Seems like a Boeing or ADM deal; the big dogs get some distance from their riff-raff employees, plus sweet golf courses.


  7. - JS Mill - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 10:17 am:

    Deerfield v. Peoria, fairly obvious why the global execs choose to move, and I am not trying to cast shade on Peoria. We often shop there as it is only 30 minutes from home. Peoria and the surrounding area are just limited in what they can offer the execs.


  8. - walker - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 10:18 am:

    “”"Incentives … did not drive Caterpillar’s decision”"”

    They never do. Ask any large company’s executive team.


  9. - Robert the Bruce - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 10:22 am:

    wordslinger nailed it.

    Downtown Peoria was closer to the private airport that Cat execs used.


  10. - anon2 - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 10:26 am:

    Deerfield is where Rauner grew up.


  11. - Slippin' Jimmy - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 10:40 am:

    Word for the Trophy!


  12. - Annonin' - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 10:43 am:

    Deerfield to O’Hare is about 45 minutes or more. Big CAT jets can use Palwaukee. Not much outbound METRA service in a.m. So the new hires will need to find a bunkhouse nearby. Housing mostly overpriced and over taxed.


  13. - wordslinger - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 10:49 am:

    There’s a Metra stop a block from the building, but CAT is only talking 300 people there. I’m guessing most are doing the North Shore thing.

    Walgreens has thousands at their campus about a mile west on Lake-Cook. Lots of whiz kids take the train from the city, then Pace shuttles them to their buildings.


  14. - Texas Red - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 11:06 am:

    Great move for CAT, their employees will have access to great local schools both private and public.Plus close to Chicago and O’hare. Rep Drury and Senator Morrison have got to be loving this !


  15. - Dan Johnson - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 11:06 am:

    Public transportation explicitly mentioned by a Fortune 500 company as a reason to relocate.

    We should invest far more in public transportation. (FYI, Trump’s budget would significantly cut back on federal investment in transit, so that’s cool).


  16. - Honeybear - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 11:22 am:

    I get that Walker but I guess the taxpayer will just never get to know what amount didn’t go to the Wiillard Ice building because it “didn’t drive their decision”.

    Cat doesn’t have to send in 50-100 million in employees income tax withholding and that doesn’t concern taxpayers?

    All for a private company’s decision that was obviously not made “but for”

    You get what I’m saying?

    Republican Welfare costs hundreds of millions.

    And they scream over 194 dollars s month for food that is 100 % paid for by the Feds


  17. - Honeybear - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 11:42 am:

    Okay so here’s apology time. I just caught an article that stated that they did not receive any incentives from DCEO which would include EDGE.

    I was wrong and I stand corrected.
    Special apology to Walker for personally addressing a post to you.

    I’m super sensitive about EDGE and hope that this form of corporate welfare will not be extended past April.

    Illinois needs all the revenue we can get.


  18. - A guy - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 11:42 am:

    The execs moving up there like that area. Anyone would, it’s lovely. Sling is right about that building. Nothing remarkable about it, but the transportation options to it are very good.


  19. - RNUG - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 12:21 pm:

    Great move for CAT, their EXECUTIVES will have access to great local schools both private and public.

    * Fixed it!


  20. - Responsa - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 12:34 pm:

    As other have said, Walgreens has a big campus nearby as does Discover, Takeda Pharmaceuticals, and also Wolters Kluwer (formerly CCH). This is a great location for business’employees: access to public transportation, airports and highways/surface roads, varied housing options and great schools. Less than an hour to downtown for sports, concerts, theater and fine dining restaurants. Well done, CAT!


  21. - Anonymous - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 12:37 pm:

    “Deerfield to O’Hare is about 45 minutes or more. Big CAT jets can use Palwaukee. Not much outbound METRA service in a.m. So the new hires will need to find a bunkhouse nearby. Housing mostly overpriced and over taxed.”
    It’s not just the CAT staff jetisoning to locales far away. It’s the clients coming in to see CAT. Most fly commerical. Multiple airlines non-stop to O’Hare. And the activity scene to entertain clients is not debatable. Congrats to Deerfield.


  22. - The Doc - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 12:44 pm:

    “Deerfield to O’Hare is about 45 minutes or more”

    Maybe at the peak of rush hour, but I can get there most of the time in 25 minutes. Glad you’re not my Uber driver ;)


  23. - Just Observing - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 3:26 pm:

    ^^ What the Doc said.


  24. - Anonymous - Thursday, Apr 20, 17 @ 3:38 pm:

    The FBI will never find us in Deerfield!


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