Athens Technology Center To Employ More Than 100 IT Professionals

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A new technology assistance firm in Athens says it expects to employ 150 people over the next three years.

Mayor Paul Wiehl, Ohio University President Roderick McDavis and several community members welcomed the new CGI center at a ribbon cutting ceremony in Athens Thursday afternoon.

The center focuses on information technology and business process services.

Dave Henderson, CGI vice president, said bringing the center to Athens was an easy decision to make.

"We've looked at a lot of communities and I think when we came to Athens there was the right combination of educational institutions like Ohio University. The state and local, Athens economic development council, they really embraced us and made us feel like this is a place where we can open up a center and be successful," said Henderson.

But Wiehl said it's taken a year to make it happen, involving incentives to draw the business in.

"We did a 60 percent abatement of income tax to be credited toward the business tax. This will go for six years. The concept, of course, is that that we'll have 150 employees," he said.

CGI intends to begin recruiting for the new center this fall, and says it will target both experienced IT professionals and college graduates, including veterans and military family members.

The new center will officially open in January at Stateside Technology Park.