Katy Area EDC working on projects representing $22 billion in economic growth

By George Slaughter, News Editor
Posted 9/8/22

The Katy Area Economic Development Council is pursuing economic leads representing $22 billion worth of projects, its president said.

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Katy Area EDC working on projects representing $22 billion in economic growth


The Katy Area Economic Development Council is pursuing economic leads representing $22 billion worth of projects, its president said.

Chuck Martinez, the Katy Area EDC president, spoke at the Sept. 1 Katy Area Chamber of Commerce meeting.

“We’ve got about 82 prospects that are currently in our charts that we’re actively working in,” Martinez said. “The majority of them came from the state of Texas. The state of Texas gets an inquiry, they cast it out into the communities, and the communities that have the right opportunity present that to those candidates, those companies to consider.”

Martinez said of those 82 prospects, the Katy Area EDC is “pushing hard” on about 55 of them.

“It represents over a $22 billion pipeline of projects that were going after with over 48,000 jobs that are potentially here,” Martinez said. “Now, if you do the math and one person gets the job and typically there’s a family is so involved associated with them, now you’re talking times four. And that’s now starting to look at the potential impact of those that were working on and that’s not necessarily saying that were involved in every project is coming into our area, but this is a snapshot in terms of what the opportunities are.”

Of the total leads since January, Martinez said 59, or 72%, came from the state. He said the other 23, or 28%, came from regional agencies. Martinez said 47 of these leads involve manufacturing opportunities. Other opportunities involve accommodation/food services, construction, information, mining/gas, real estate, technical services, utilities, and wholesale trade.

Martinez said Texas “is on everyone’s mind” because of the strong business culture in the state.

“When companies are coming into the marketplace, they feel welcomed,” Martinez said. Referrals can come from the governor's office, commercial real estate developers and brokers, professional service firms, regional economic development office peers, chambers of commerce, and professional associations.

Martinez said it was important to have a proactive approach, which means relationship marketing, community networking with businesses and groups, doing industry research to identify gaps and trends and regularly engaging with Katy Area EDC members and others.

“Being on the defensive side doesn’t win games,” Martinez said. “Being proactive does. Part of the role that I’ve been doing for the last six months is trying to strategize and position our organization to win. Part of that is this relationship marketing. Being able to get out and network with the community on the things that you’re interested in. We’ve been on this listening tour and will be staying on this listening tour to hear what the community wants to do in terms of its growth. Part of that is also doing our own intelligence and terms of where the industries are going, where are the gaps in the Houston marketplace.”

Martinez said the Katy Area EDC focuses on four things: recruiting companies, helping existing companies grow, supporting the local community or ecosystem and raising the profile of the Katy-area marketplace.

Martinez said the Katy Area EDC is working to welcome a Belgian delegation that will visit Katy in October. He also promoted an upcoming Katy area networking night, set for Sept. 24, at a Houston Dash women’s soccer game. Tickets are $25 and include round-trip park and ride from the METRO Grand Parkway facility at the Grand Parkway-I-10 intersection.

“We’re about to celebrate our 20th anniversary next year,” Martinez said. “We’re a nonprofit organization and we talked about the roles that we do as an organization. We simply provide information to the process for companies to make that decision to be in our area.”

Martinez, who previously held a similar role in Bryan-College Station, has been in Katy since February. Since coming here, he said, he has been “networking as crazy as I can, meeting with everybody that I can and I’m just very appreciative of the community atmosphere that’s here.”

Katy Area Chamber of Commerce, Katy Area Economic Development Council