After mulling a move, American Greetings said it plans to keep its corporate headquarters in northeast Ohio.

American Greetings, headquarters, Ohio, Zev Weiss, John Kasich, greeting card

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American Greetings HQ to stay in Ohio

March 7th, 2011

CLEVE – After mulling a move, American Greetings said it plans to keep its corporate headquarters in northeast Ohio.

Chief executive officer Zev Weiss announced the decision Monday with Ohio Gov. John Kasich, who signed legislation providing new tax incentives to help companies like American Greetings succeed in Ohio, the greeting card maker said.

"The day after I was elected, I came to American Greetings to personally let Zev and his leadership team know how committed I was to helping them stay in Ohio and continue a tradition that lasts more than 100 years. Working with the General Assembly we were able to make that happen," stated Kasich. "This is great news for both American Greetings, northeast Ohio and the state and marks another step forward in Ohio's effort to create a jobs-friendly environment and overhaul how we work with companies to help them thrive and grow."

American Greetings said that to position itself for continued growth and adapt to changing industry needs, last year it began a review of workplace needs and site options for its 2,000-employee corporate headquarters in Brooklyn, Ohio. The analysis included costs and the enhancement of the company's creative environment and culture.

In November, the company narrowed the sites it was considering to locations in northeast Ohio and greater Chicago.

However, American Greetings said, the state of Ohio produced a combination of resources, primarily in the form of loans and tax credits, that could be used to assist in the development of a new or renovated Ohio headquarters.

Weiss praised the efforts of Kasich and other state officials to keep American Greetings in Ohio. "Gov. Kasich is keeping a commitment he made to us last year to look for ways to make American Greetings more competitive and encourage us to keep our headquarters and our jobs in Ohio," explained Weiss. "The state convinced us that Ohio is indeed open for business and is aggressively working to retain and grow jobs."

Added Weiss, "We will this year begin to invest in the development of a world-class headquarters in greater Cleveland."

American Greetings noted that it designs many of its cards and other products at its headquarters. The company said its need to renovate or replace its headquarters was driven in part by both the need to provide a stimulating environment that spurs creative thinking and the ability to keep and attract high-skilled, creative talent.

The company added that it will continue to review sites in northeast Ohio, including its current headquarters in Brooklyn. Its 2,000-employee headquarters has an annual payroll of more than $150 million.