COVID-19 Update: Northeast Indiana employers can access regional COVID-19 resources here.

Northeast Indiana Business Development—Past, Present and Future

January 8th, 2018

Business Development to Increase Investment in Northeast Indiana

Over the past 11 years, the Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership’s business development team evolved to meet the needs of a changing economy. While the process and strategy changed, the overall objective remained the same—increase the number of projects that Northeast Indiana competes for by:

  • Building a robust pipeline of prospects and leads
  • Investing in the regional product/infrastructure
  • Improving Northeast Indiana’s business climate

At the most recent investor board meeting of the Regional Partnership’s Regional Opportunities Council, President and CEO John Sampson provided a detailed look at Business Development: past, present and future. Here’s a short recap.


In the early days of the Regional Partnership, the sales team consisted of two staff members who diligently-worked to build relationships with national site consultants and corporate relocation professionals. These relationships accounted for a significant portion of all projects issued by the Regional Partnership. Additionally, the team worked with contract researchers to identify companies with a high potential of expansion or relocation projects. At that time, the team had limited connectivity to the regional vision and stakeholders.


Over time, the business development team grew and developed new strategies, including lead generation and major markets sales trips. With the release of the 2016 Target Industry Report, the business development team placed a greater emphasis on identifying gaps in the supply chain and gaining business intelligence from regional stakeholders. As regional talent needs grew, the business development team began to connect sales trips to talent attraction efforts. As a result, connections between the regional initiatives team and the business development team grew stronger.


As the business development team begins 2018, we are blending the strategies of the past and the present to lead our team into the future. With four business development team members, expanded partnerships with local economic developers and the creation of brand ambassadors, we truly have a regional sales team. Finally, under the new Vision 2030 framework, business attraction and regional initiatives will be aligned to build and sell Northeast Indiana.

To learn more about Northeast Indiana’s business development efforts, please contact Vice President of Business Development Chad Ruston.

Categories & Tags Business Climate