Iowa's business opportunities for entrepreneurs and corporations, a highly trained workforce and aggressive incentive programs are combining to turn Iowa into the latest hub for the information technology industry.
Iowa is working closely with companies to create hubs of IT innovation in Iowa's communities. In the last three years alone, Iowa has attracted nearly $600 million in new investments from IT companies, including the recent locations of IBM, Google and Microsoft data centers. Currently, Iowa's three major cities have been named Top 10 cities for data center locations, and the technology industry employs over 76,000 workers and accounts for $10.6 billion of the stateâ€™s GDP.
Iowa's renowned research universities are providing innovative IT research and workers needed for an expanding IT industry. With three major state universities ranking in the Top 10 research universities in the country, Iowa currently awards the seventh-highest number of science and engineering degrees per 100,000 residents. Programs such as the Iowa Virtual Reality Applications Center at Iowa State University have successfully provided innovative solutions to companies and spawned entrepreneurial activities that are being used globally.
The Battelle Memorial Institute research demonstrated that as the state connects its top university research programs and its development opportunities with key clusters, the research and development efforts are providing a competitive advantage in Iowa's technology-driven development. Led by a steering committee of leaders in Iowa's IT field, key clusters of growth within the IT industry include radio frequency, advanced visualization, human-computer interaction, IT security systems, software quality assurance, and optical science laser technologies.
High Quality Jobs Program This program is designed to promote the creation or retention of quality jobs by assisting businesses locating, expanding or modernizing their facilities in Iowa through a package of tax credits, exemptions, and/or refunds to approved businesses.
New Jobs Tax Credit The Iowa New Jobs Tax Credit is an Iowa corporate income tax credit and is available to a company that has entered into a New Jobs Training Agreement (260E) and expands their Iowa employment base by ten percent or more.
Research Activities Credit Iowa sets itself apart, being one of only a few states to offer a refundable research activities credit. Iowa companies earn refundable tax credits for research and development investments that may be paid directly in cash to the company once its tax liabilities have been met. A company must meet the qualifications of the Federal Research Activities Credit in order to be eligible for the credit in Iowa.