The science of living things — human, animal and plant — has long been a field in which Kansas has strengths. The state has a strong foundation in some areas of the biosciences and is well situated to take advantage of emerging opportunities in others. From the nationally recognized drug discovery and development enterprise at University of Kansas and Kansas companies, to the state’s historical agricultural leadership, to the selection of Kansas as home to the National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility, Kansas is ripe for bioscience growth.
With over 16,000 people employed in the biosciences and industry leaders calling our state home, we are working with our partners statewide to offer comprehensive support for world-class research, commercialization, and business expansion in the bioscience industry. The Kansas Bioscience Authority, created by the Kansas Economic Growth Act of 2004, can provide financial resources and customized support services to help address strategic issues critical to the success of emerging Kansas bioscience enterprises. KansasBio, a not-for-profit organization serving as the voice of the biosciences in Kansas, enhances the business and research climate, and works with state leaders to attract and retain bioscience talent, companies and funding.
Kansas invests in companies and universities working in bioscience sectors where Kansas has established leadership and expertise and the resources needed to benefit from new opportunities. Those include the following areas:
The animal health sector involves the production, marketing and use of domestic animals in agriculture, entertainment and companionship. Kansas is part of the renowned Kansas City Animal Health Corridor, home to one-third of the world’s animal health industry. Kansas seeks to leverage these strengths by attracting new animal health companies and expanding existing ones, encouraging research collaborations that will lead to novel products, and build the foreign animal disease expertise that led to Kansas’ selection as the site of the National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility to protect our nation’s food supply.
This sector encompasses work to safeguard and improve health with new drugs, therapies and medical devices. Kansas’ robust human health sector, from basic research to drug and device innovation to outstanding clinical care, provides benefits to Kansans and others worldwide. Clinical research for human health is a major emphasis for our state as Kansas is part of a bi-state region that ranks in the top five nationally for its concentration of clinical research firms. Kansas looks to work with companies who can bring drugs and devices to market faster and less expensively than traditional methods, provide new ways to diagnose disease and attract a growing share of the federal government’s research investment.
Work in this sector focuses on creating fuel and chemicals out of biological material, often plant matter such as corn or switchgrass. Bioenergy products are easier on the environment and can help wean our nation from oil dependency. In this sector, Kansas hopes to develop the supply chain of feedstocks for bioenergy production, and drive collaborations that will lead to new businesses and products.
AG & BIO-BASED PRODUCTS
Kansas is known for its strong agricultural sector. Agriculture and products derived from crops will continue to play a key role in the state’s economy, particularly in rural communities. These industries have a global reach, too — Kansas’ agricultural roots prime the state for advances in plant biology to help feed and clothe the world. Our state seeks advance new technologies, support innovative research, create new jobs and further advance Kansas’ leadership in these sectors.
Our commitment to the biosciences is strong and continues to grow. Let us show you how your company will benefit.
Whether by highway, rail or air, Kansas offers excellent transportation and marketing advantages for your business. Because we’re central and because we’ve focused on building and maintaining an outstanding infrastructure, it’s easier and cheaper to ship
to and from Kansas. We’re home to numerous production facilities, warehouses and distribution centers that have found shipping raw materials and finished goods is more profitable when you’re located in the nation’s heartland.
Kansas’ strategic location, at the convergence of I-35 and I-70, places it at the crossroads of America. Our central location and excellent transportation network with access to interstate rail, trucking and air corridors put businesses within next-day freight service of 70 percent of the U.S.
Kansas ranks sixth for quality and access to transportation in all modes for getting products to market and for transporting individuals. We also rank third nationally in total road mileage with approximately 140,000 total road and street miles and over 10,000 highway miles. Thanks to our state’s proximity to major markets, our transit times and shipping rates for common carriers can compete with any in the country. Kansas motor carrier regulations, covering truck and trailer size and weight, mirror many federal guidelines.
Kansas ranks in the top 10 in the United States in railroad mileage with almost 4,800 miles of track, 2.23 percent of all U.S. railroad miles. Our four Class I and 13 Class III secondary rail carriers ensure freight service to virtually anywhere in Kansas, since the countless tons of grain grown here have for decades mandated a comprehensive rail system.
Over 900 incorporated and unincorporated cities stand along Kansas’ tracks. Many communities are served by more than one railroad, and businesses in several cities can take advantage of reciprocal switching agreements between railroads. The Kansas City area, a convenient first stop en route to all major marketing regions, ranks as the second leading rail center in the nation.
Kansas City International Airport (KCI) and the Wichita Mid-Continent Airport are the largest airports serving the state, providing businesses with immediate access to major markets nationwide. KCI serves as the primary commercial airport for a four-state area for both passenger and air cargo service. These two airports contain state-of-the-art cargo handling facilities, main-deck loaders capable of handling the world’s largest freighter aircraft and an extensive highway system just minutes away to provide businesses with quick access to goods and markets.
The Port of Catoosa, an inland seaport located near Tulsa, Okla., is approximately 50 miles from the Kansas border. It is a year-round, economical alternative to other means of travel and is especially advantageous to businesses manufacturing large goods.
FOREIGN TRADE ZONES
Foreign trade zones (FTZs) in Kansas provide a duty-free and quota-free entry point for foreign goods into specific areas under customs supervision for an unlimited period of time. Kansas offers a variety of sites managed by grantees in Kansas City (Zone 17) and Wichita (Zone 161).
Kansas has taken advantage of the new Alternative Site Framework (ASF) foreign trade zone designation intended to provide greater flexibility and expedite access to the benefits of the Foreign Trade Zone program. As a result, a company in the designated region is not restricted to a site specific FTZ, as the entire county is eligible for FTZ benefits under the ASF designation. This streamlined approach offers a quicker turnaround time and lower cost, allowing grantees to locate zone designation where companies are located.
The Kansas City FTZ has a number of Magnet and Usage-Driven sites, including a five-acre site with 220,000 square feet of above-ground covered space; a second five-acre site with a 26,000 square-foot warehouse, a 50,000 square-foot warehouse, 21 acres in the Leavenworth Area Business Center and over 1,000 acres at two locations in Topeka: Forbes Field/Topeka Air Industrial Park and Phillip Billard Airport/Industrial Park. The new ASF procedures were adopted for a five-county area including Douglas, Johnson, Leavenworth, Miami, and Wyandotte that allow for a six-week approval process for certain types of designations with a significant reduction in the company’s out of pocket expenses.
The Wichita FTZ has received approval to use the new ASF procedures for a central region that includes Butler, Harvey, McPherson, Reno, Saline, Sedgwick and Sumner counties. The new system makes it faster and less expensive for area businesses to establish their facilities as foreign trade zones, with an estimated turnaround time of 30 to 40 days. Existing Magnet sites include 120 acres and 800,000 square feet of covered warehouse and assembly space in Wichita.
Goods brought into a zone or sub-zone may be stored, manipulated or mixed with domestic or foreign materials used in manufacturing processes or exhibited for sale. Anything shipped out of a zone into the United States customs territory is then subject to duties. Goods reshipped to foreign nations are never subject to U.S. customs duties.
SKILLED AND EDUCATED LABOR
One of the positive factors in the expansion of the Kansas economy is the Kansas worker. A highly motivated and well-educated workforce is ready to assist your firm. Though much of the state’s 2.9 million population is concentrated in its metropolitan areas, firms locating in any region of the state will find a high-quality workforce ready to put its talents to work.
Kansas’ education system is one of the best in the nation and a powerful factor contributing to the success of many businesses. Our education system has resulted in an adept, well-skilled and highly trainable labor force. The high school graduation rate and percentage of the population with a bachelor’s degree are both well above the national average. Kansas ranks in the top third nationally for percent of adults with a college degree and average ACT score. Kansas’ higher education system includes six Board of Regent’s universities, 26 community and technical colleges statewide and one municipal college. Both the University of Kansas and Kansas State University have well-known specialties in medical, pharmaceutical, bioscience, animal and food science.
Kansas is also a right-to-work state. This has helped the labor costs in Kansas stay below the national average. The current union membership percentage in Kansas is 6.8 percent, well below the U.S. average. In addition, we have multiple workforce training programs and initiatives for companies new to Kansas or Kansas businesses needing to expand or restructure. Our training programs can offer direct financial assistance to train your workforce, and our workforce development professionals can assist in the recruitment of labor to staff your new business.
COMPETITIVE UTILITY RATES
Kansas possesses a built-in advantage over other states when it comes to meeting your energy needs. With one of the largest natural gas fields in the world, Kansas is among the nation’s leading producers of natural gas. Also, our statewide power costs are competitive with the national average.
POSITIVE BUSINESS CLIMATE
In an ongoing effort to improve the state’s business climate, Kansas lawmakers continue to find ways to reduce the cost of living and doing business in this state. Living costs are relatively low in Kansas at 8.7 percent below the national average, making our state one of the most affordable in the nation. Kansas housing is affordable, too, with the median value of owner-occupied housing more than 16.7 percent below the national average. In addition, Kansas ranks 15th overall for business competitiveness based on ten key economic factors, including workforce, education and transportation.
MORE INFORMATION ON BIOSCIENCE IN KANSAS CAN BE FOUND AT
| New! Business income tax exemption for LLCs, LLPs, Sub-Chapter S Corporations, Partnerships and Sole Proprietorships
|Financial assistance for the attraction and expansion of bioscience companies and funding for research and development vouchers at Kansas research institutions.
|Financial assistance to train a new workforce or retrain an existing workforce
|Financial assistance for construction, remodel, furnishings and equipment
|10 percent corporate income tax credit for new capital investment
|100 percent personal property tax exemption on commercial machinery and equipment new to Kansas
| No inventory or franchise tax by state law
|100 percent sales tax exemption on purchases to construct, remodel, furnish and equip a facility
|100 percent sales tax exemption on items that become part of a manufactured product or items consumed in production
| Property tax abatement on real property for up to 10 years subject to community approval
Kansas Bioscience Authority