Case Studies

Louisiana's swift permitting process gives SNF Flopam competitive advantage as it develops production facility in town of White Castle

SNF Flopam

Industry demand drives new SNF Floerger facility

Enhanced Oil Recovery, or EOR, is a generic term for the various methods used to increase the amount of oil that can be extracted from an oil field. According to the Department of Energy, EOR techniques often increase extraction of a reservoir's oil to 30 to 60 percent, where as standard processes of oil recovery typically capture only 20 to 40 percent of the original oil in a reservoir. Of the components typically used in EOR processes, two of them are acrylamide monomer and polyacrylamide powders.

These powders are just two of the products produced by SNF Floerger, a privately-held French company. SNF is a leading supplier of water-soluble polymers, and its products are frequently used in municipal, industrial and wastewater treatment facilities. In the case of EOR, some products are used in oil extraction.

In the later half of the 2000s, the demand for EOR components was growing, and SNF had to increase its output. With this growth in demand, company officials were determined to increase SNF's production capacity with the addition of a new site. SNF's facilities require several hundred acres of land, as well as an adequate infrastructure to support it. Once company officials had identified a site, a lengthy permitting process awaited them.

SNF finds site, project support in Louisiana

LED officials reached out to SNF in 2008 to identify a location in Louisiana for the company's new facility. LED partnered with Iberville Parish, the Iberville Chamber of Commerce and the town of White Castle to address the needs of the company. An 800-acre site was identified in Iberville to accommodate the scope of SNF's project.

The partners compiled several solutions to support SNF's additional needs. Of the infrastructural needs of SNF, a rail spur, was of particular importance. LED offered a performance-based incentive of $26.55 million for the development of a rail spur and other infrastructure needs for the site. Iberville Parish also contributed an additional $1 million for infrastructure costs.

To support SNF in obtaining necessary environmental permits for the facility, LED and its partners worked with the state Department of Environmental Quality to facilitate the necessary approvals through Louisiana's expedited environmental permitting process.

SNF qualified for Louisiana's Industrial Tax Exemption and the Quality Jobs program. LED also offered SNF the services of LED FastStart® — the No. 1 workforce program in the nation — to provide recruiting screening and training for SNF's new employees. LED officials and their partners in Iberville Parish knew the company was evaluating several additional locations but were confident that they would meet the needs of SNF.

SNF picks Louisiana, begins construction and employee recruitment

In June 2009, SNF announced the end of their search for a location to build their new facility and selected the 800-acre site in Iberville for its expansion, representing a $350 million capital investment. The investment, which will operate under the name Flopam Inc., is expected to create a total of 500 new jobs in the Iberville region, as well as 100 permanent contract jobs.

The company quickly made use of FastStart's services, which provided assistance to fill approximately 100 jobs. As part of this process, FastStart worked closely with SNF to conduct a job fair, drawing more than 1,500 applicants. From there, screened applicants attended a one-day, pre-hire training session. This session helped the SNF team determine which candidates best suited the needs of the company. FastStart also provided SNF with operations training manuals, safety training manuals, quality training and supervisor leader training to ensure the company's staff was well-equipped to meet the demand for EOR components.

In August 2011, only one year after Flopam's groundbreaking, the company marked its growth with more than 100 jobs — well ahead of schedule to reach its 2015 hiring goals. The company remains on track to fulfill its hiring goals as construction continues on the site.

"We are grateful for the positive reception we received throughout the site evaluation process and the encouragement from state and local representatives to locate the facility in Iberville Parish," said SNF President Peter W. Nichols. "This facility is the largest, single-greenfield investment in the history of our company. We've reached this significant point in our project with the tremendous support from the state of Louisiana and so many individuals in Iberville Parish. We look forward to executing our construction plans over the next few years."

Related Incentive

Quality Jobs

Provides rebate on annual payroll expenses and either a 4% sales/use tax rebate on capital expenditures or an investment tax credit equal to 1.5% of qualifying expenses.

Key Industry

Fuel and Chemical Processing

Highly skilled talent and an abundance of natural resources make Louisiana a smart choice for the process industries.

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