SOUTHWESTERN ENERGY COMPANY ANNOUNCES PLANS TO BUILD REGIONAL HEADQUARTERS IN CONWAY
CONWAY, Ark., Dec. 18, 2008 – Southwestern Energy Company, a natural gas exploration and production company credited with being the first company to drill and successfully produce natural gas from the Fayetteville Shale, today announced plans to build a new regional headquarters in Conway to support its Fayetteville Shale operations. The $25 million, 100,000 square-foot building will be located on an 11.5-acre site at The Village at Hendrix, a traditional neighborhood development by The Village at Hendrix, LLC, a subsidiary of Hendrix College. Construction on the building will begin this winter with completion expected by mid-2010. Gov. Mike Beebe was on hand for the announcement along with Harold Korell, Southwestern Energy CEO and chairman of the board, and numerous local community and business leaders.
“This is a significant milestone for us as our operations continue to grow here in Arkansas, particularly in the Fayetteville Shale play,” said Korell. “We have already invested more than $2.5 billion in our Fayetteville Shale operations. This new facility will be an additional investment and an important regional headquarters for us to house a wide variety of employees who are dedicated to leading and managing our day-to-day operations.”
The new facility will house approximately 220 employees when it opens and will eventually hold between 400-450 employees, according to Korell. The breadth of knowledge-based jobs to be located at the regional headquarters building includes positions in the fields of science, technology, administration and operations such as: geoscientists, engineers, data analysts, information technology specialists, accountants and human resource personnel.
Since 2004, the Fayetteville Shale has become one of the state’s most significant new economic engines. In addition to providing our country with a new source of clean-burning natural gas and contributing to America’s goal of energy independence, the Fayetteville Shale play is projected to continue making a substantial economic impact on Arkansas over the next five years. A study released earlier this year by the University of Arkansas provided updated economic impact figures on the play, projecting its impact from 2008 to 2012 to include:
- $17.9 billion overall economic impact;
- More than 11,000 new jobs;
- $1.8 billion in state taxes; and
- More than $150 million in local sales and property taxes.
The Village at Hendrix is an initiative undertaken by Hendrix College to create a neighborhood employing New Urban design principles. These principles integrate commercial and residential space using comfortable, livable design and architecture to raise the quality of life and standard of living for those who work, learn and live within and around the neighborhood. The pedestrian-friendly community will enable access to the many facilities and services of Hendrix College as well as the many planned retail stores, hospitality establishments and other amenities to sustain a vibrant and environmentally friendly community.
“I’m excited about the potential this deal brings for the college’s educational mission and for advancing the New Urban principles of The Village at Hendrix,” said J. Timothy Cloyd, president, Hendrix College. “The fact that Southwestern Energy has such a credible record pertaining to natural gas exploration and sustainability issues, along with their desire to create a project that conforms with the design and architectural concepts of The Village at Hendrix, makes this transaction really appealing for us.”
Southwestern Energy’s experience in environmental planning will be leveraged during the development of The Village and the new company regional headquarters building. The company will work with Hendrix College to collaborate on the design of an environmental watershed within The Village that will serve as both an outdoor recreation area and academic resource demonstrating best-in-class storm water management practices.
“We are thrilled that Southwestern Energy officials have chosen to invest in the City of Conway,” said Conway Mayor Tab Townsell. “Their decision solidifies our city’s status as the epicenter of the Fayetteville Shale business community. These new knowledge-based workers are a welcome asset to our already diverse economy. Southwestern Energy had the vision to develop the Fayetteville Shale, and Conway and Faulkner County have been the beneficiaries of the enormous economic impact surrounding it.”
About Southwestern Energy
Founded in Arkansas more than 75 years ago as a local gas distribution company, Southwestern Energy today is primarily focused on the exploration for and production of natural gas. The majority of the company’s operations are located in Arkansas, Texas, Oklahoma and Louisiana. The company led the discovery and development of the Fayetteville Shale play and today is the largest operator in the shale producing approximately 600 million cubic feet of gas per day.
To date, Southwestern Energy has invested more than $2.5 billion in its Fayetteville Shale operations and employs more than 800 employees in Arkansas. The company has also donated more than $1 million to non-profit and educational institutions to enhance the quality of life for Arkansans. In recognition of its community support, Southwestern Energy was named the 2007 Outstanding Philanthropic Corporation by the Arkansas Community Foundation. Additional information on the company can be found at www.swn.com. (Editor’s note: See detailed company fact sheet for additional information.)