Nike to Open New Distribution Center in Memphis

Nike announced on March 2 that it will build a $107 million, one million square foot footwear distribution center on a 125-acre parcel of land in Memphis, Tenn. …

Nike announced on March 2 that it will build a $107 million, one million square foot footwear distribution center on a 125-acre parcel of land in Memphis, Tenn. The project, located in the Frayser area of Memphis, received a 13-year tax freeze from the Memphis and Shelby County Industrial Development board.

The new distribution center will add 594 jobs, bringing Nike’s total employment in Memphis to 1,800, according to the Memphis Business Journal. The site, known as Northridge, will eventually house employees from Winchester Road, Nike’s existing facility in Memphis.

A distribution center in Wilsonville, Ore., will continue to operate through 2008, when the current lease expires. At that point, Nike will relocate the distribution center’s employees to the Northridge site.

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The construction of the Northridge distribution center will boost the Memphis economy through providing jobs in construction, transportation and other such industries, in addition to the permanent jobs the distribution center will provide.

The influx of employees will boost the housing market and further bolster the area’s economy. Wilsonville is a much smaller community than Memphis, so an exodus of workers would have a significant impact on the housing market there. However, there is potential for another company to capitalize on the availability of the Wilsonville distribution center when Nike vacates it in 2008.

With the new Northridge distribution center, Nike projected savings for itself and its retail customers of more than $200 million in cost efficiencies, as well as reduced shipping times and increased service capabilities.

“Nike is pleased to increase its investment in the Memphis community with this state-of-the-art facility,” Nick Athanasakos, vice president of Nike Supply Chain, said in a statement. “This distribution center will be great for our employees, retail customers and consumers while expediting our time to market.”

Nike, based in Beaverton, Ore., is a leading manufacturer of athletic gear.

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