Caterpillar Leaving Illinois for Greener Pastures

Caterpillar Leaving Illinois for Greener Pastures
(AP Photo/Richard Drew)

On Tuesday, Caterpillar Inc. announced it was moving its company headquarters to Texas. On its website, the company posted this statement:

DEERFIELD, IL – Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE: CAT) today announced it will move its global headquarters to the company’s existing office in Irving, Texas, from its current location in Deerfield, Illinois.

“We believe it’s in the best strategic interest of the company to make this move, which supports Caterpillar’s strategy for profitable growth as we help our customers build a better, more sustainable world,” said Chairman and CEO Jim Umpleby.

Caterpillar has had a presence in Texas since the 1960s across several areas of the company. Illinois remains the largest concentration of Caterpillar employees anywhere in the world.

The company will begin transitioning its headquarters to Irving in 2022.

Per Market Watch:

Even with the move, Illinois has the largest concentration of Caterpillar CAT, -5.44% employees anywhere in the world, the company said. The headquarters was historically in downstate Peoria, Ill., before a move to the Chicago suburb of Deerfield in 2017.

This announcement follows Boeing’s announcement in May that it would be moving from Chicago, Illinois to Arlington, Virginia, and, of course, Tesla’s move last year from Palo Alto, California to Austin, Texas.

It also follows Governor Pritzker’s regular touting of the State’s strong financial performance as he stumps for re-election.

Republicans weren’t so generous in their characterizations.

Illinois Republicans are blasting Gov. J.B. Pritzker after Caterpillar announced plans to relocate its corporate headquarters to Texas, but the governor is firing back, saying that the state is still seeing increased job growth thanks to his administration’s policies.

“Caterpillar’s decision to leave Illinois after calling it home for many decades is a devastating loss to Illinois’ business community,” House Republican Leader Jim Durkin said in a statement. “The reasons for this decision could not have been more clear – Illinois’ business climate no longer works for this company.”

Some of Pritzker’s opponents in the Illinois’ governor’s race say that the move is another example of why Republican leadership is needed in the state.

“This is yet another reminder that Illinois is desperately in need of change in Springfield. Self-serving career politicians have sold us out,” candidate Jesse Sullivan said in a statement.

Of course, Texas Governor Greg Abbott welcomed news of the move, issuing his own statement:

“Caterpillar’s global headquarters relocation is a major win for the people of North Texas and the entire state, now making Texas home to 54 Fortune 500 corporate headquarters. I am proud to welcome Caterpillar’s headquarters to Texas and am excited for the economic opportunities this will create for Texans. Businesses of all sizes and people from all backgrounds can grow and succeed in the Lone Star State because we champion a world-class economic environment fueled by the lowest business operating costs in the nation, a reasonable regulatory environment, and a lower cost of living coupled with an exceptional quality of life. Caterpillar’s relocation to Irving is a testament to the boundless opportunity Texas has to offer, and I look forward to working alongside this global leader as we keep the American Dream a reality for every Texan.”

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