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Alaska company considers moving HQ to Springs

By: WAYNE HEILMAN
October 1, 2012
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WHPacific, a subsidiary of Alaska native-owned Nana Development Corp., will decide by mid-November whether to move its headquarters from Anchorage to Colorado Springs, Denver or Seattle.

The company, which employs 420 in Alaska and 11 other West Coast and Rocky Mountain region offices, specializes in architecture, engineering, development, transportation consulting and surveying; it wants to relocate its headquarters from Alaska to a city with abundant air service as part of a strategy to seek more business in the western U.S., said Robert Macomber, who became president of WHPacific in June.

WHPacific would move 10 executives from Alaska, hire 10 more locally for administrative jobs by the end of the first quarter and add another 20 within two years, he said.

“We want to move our headquarters because the growth opportunities are greater in the lower 48 (states). We want to increase our revenue in the western U.S. and eventually beyond that,” Macomber said while in Colorado Springs attending last week’s Southern Colorado Economic Forum.

“We have an operations office with 40 employees in Seattle, where we have 12,000 to 15,000 square feet of extra space and the airport there is an important gateway to Alaska. But we also want to consider other locations near international airports, so that made the Denver area (including Colorado Springs) a candidate.”

WHPacific operates a office in Lakewood that could be expanded to accommodate the company’s headquarters staff, or the company could lease available space adjacent to Five Rivers Services LLC, which is based in Colorado Springs and is owned by a Nana subsidiary, Macomber said. Both Colorado locations are attractive to WHPacific because company personnel could fly nonstop from Denver International Airport to North Dakota, where the company plans to open an office to pursue opportunities in the oil and natural gas industry, he said.

The headquarters operation would need about 3,500 square feet of office space to house 20 employees initially, Macomber said. The company also wants to be able to expand the headquarters space to 7,500 square feet to house 20 operations employees that WHPacific plans to hire during the next two years, he said.

WHPacific is working with the Colorado Springs Regional Business Alliance, formerly know as the Greater Colorado Springs Chamber and EDC, to get information about the city and any economic development incentives that may be available to help the company make the move, Macomber said.

Contact Wayne Heilman: 636-0234 Twitter @wayneheilman
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