What is it about Wasatch County that is so attractive to residents and visitors from around the world? Perhaps the 2002 Winter Olympic Games played a role in introducing the Heber Valley to the world, or maybe three beautiful state parks have helped brand the area. Nobody could blame a person for wanting to visit here, and if the past dozen years have proved anything, people clearly want to live here. Afterall, the Heber Valley is located less than an hour from the Salt Lake City International Airport, and just a quick, 25-minute drive to Provo and Orem. For winter enthusiasts, the Heber Valley sits handsomely between world-renowned Deer Valley Resort and the quaint and timeless Sundance Resort.
With so many quality ingredients thrown into the mix, it is little wonder why Wasatch County has quickly transformed into one of the fastest growing counties in the United States. But with so much population growth, one might ask the following questions: (1) How is the local economy performing, and (2) what, if any, businesses are relocating to the Heber Valley, and (3) how much do businesses value the quality of life in the Heber Valley?
LOCAL ECONOMIC CONDITIONS
The past decade has seen a surge in economic strength and vitality—not just in Wasatch County, but throughout the State of Utah. In May of 2019, U.S. News and World Report ranked Utah as having the #2 best economy in the United States. Many other rankings tell a similar story that Utah is thriving by most, if not all, economic indicators. With so much economic success taking place in Utah, more and more companies are looking for more business stability and are making Utah their home.
Like Utah, Wasatch County is also a hotbed of economic success as evidenced by a 35.9% job growth rate from 2013 to 2018. During the same time period, Wasatch County saw 2,786 new jobs created with an additional 2,453 new jobs expected to be created in the next five years.
BUSINESSES RELOCATING TO HEBER VALLEY
Many exciting companies ranging from ski lift manufacturers to engineering firms have relocated to Heber Valley in the past few years, and Wasatch County appears to be poised for more economic growth.
One of the most intriguing businesses to relocate to the Heber Valley is Ventum—a specialty bike company that recently relocated its headquarters from sunny Miami Beach, Florida and consolidated its other facility from Boulder, Colorado to Heber City.
According to Diaa Nour, Ventum CEO, “We needed to find a location where we could be close to our customers, hire great people to join our team, and have room to grow.” He continued, “Our new home in Utah meets all of those criteria, plus having the mountains and trails right outside is going to come in handy for the bikes we’re working on next.”
For Wasatch County, Ventum’s decision to relocated to Heber City will result in 32 new jobs and over $1 million in capital investment. All Ventum bikes sold in the United States will be assembled in Utah.
Ventum, like many other reputable companies seeking the economic opportunity that Utah provides, received a post-performance tax incentive that will enable the creators of the ultimate triathlon racing bike to hire more, invest more, and innovate more—all from within the walls of its new facility in Heber City, Utah.
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AND QUALITY OF LIFE
During the next several years, county and city leaders will leverage $15 million of bond money and invest in preserving critical open space throughout the Heber Valley. Likewise, Wasatch County, Heber City, and Midway City have invested into new trails and outdoor recreation infrastructure to enhance the quality of life for residents. As county and city leaders continue to provide greater access to thousands of acres of public lands and trails, world-class companies like Ventum are more interested than ever in relocating their business to Wasatch County—precisely because of the focus on outdoor recreation and open space—not in spite of it.
So, what is it about Wasatch County that is so attractive to residents, visitors, AND businesses from around the world? The answer lies in the economic stability of Utah, Heber Valley’s proximity to major markets, and perhaps more than anything, an unparalleled quality of life that blesses all who make their home here.
Learn more about what makes Wasatch County a great place to bring your business with this short video.
For more economic data on Wasatch County see our two reports.