Development authority: Business booming in Baldwin County

MILLEDGEVILLE, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – Business owners in Baldwin county are seeing an increase in sales and growth, which could allow them to expand and create more jobs.

This is according to a survey the Development Authority of the City of Milledgeville & Baldwin County conducted. Executive Director, Matt Poyner, presented the results at the Milledgeville-Baldwin County Eggs and Issues meeting Wednesday morning.

“Even though there’s been a decline with the recession and things of that nature, we have seen a growth in some businesses coming to Milledgeville and Baldwin County,” said Poyner.

Blackbird Coffee manager, Bailey Warr, is a witness to the growth.

“I’ve been here since 2004,” said Warr. “Milledgeville, not just our business, but the whole town has really boomed and developed significantly.”

The Development Authority surveyed businesses in the county as part of the Business Retention and Expansion Program.

“We went through the community and interviewed different companies and different sectors to learn more about what they’re doing, what they’re seeing and what their thoughts are in the community,” said Poyner.

The county conducts a survey every three years. In 2016, 63 out of 510 businesses took the survey. 68 percent of businesses saw sales increase, 29 percent had stable sales and three percent saw a decrease.

The study showed the pattern in sales was affected by whether businesses felt like they had barriers or not.

“Companies that did not see any issues that didn’t see any issues that affected them, their growth was growing,” said Poyner. “They’re seeing increased sales, and increase productivity and the opportunities to expand.”

Poyner also gave some advice on how to stabilize or increase sales

“I think if you have your business plan, and you know what you need and how to find the right answers and the right partners to help you move forward,” said Poyner, “It’s going to correlate in your sales for your company.”

Moving forward is what Blackbird Coffee is planning to do.

“Blackbird Coffee, specifically, has a lot of things going on right now that are coming up over the next year that people have to look forward to that has a lot to do with growth,” said Warr.

The study also showed that 56 percent of businesses plan on expanding within the next three years. The Development Authority says this could create about 140 jobs and more than $11 million of community dollar investment.

Categories: Baldwin County, Local News

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