Proximity to a major university and an international airport were among the factors Amazon recently cited as desirable in its search for a second headquarters.

Benchmark Electronics seems to have a similar wish list.

The industrial engineering and manufacturing company earlier this year moved its headquarters from the Houston area to Scottsdale as it awaits the construction of a new home base in Tempe.

Gov. Doug Ducey is scheduled to attend a groundbreaking ceremony Thursday. 

The new headquarters, on Rio Salado Parkway at the southwest intersection of Loop 101 and Loop 202, is expected to be completed in early 2019.

The publicly traded company has about 13,000 employees globally, including 225 currently in Arizona.

Benchmark plans to add add roughly 500 new jobs in the Phoenix metro area over the next five years. 

Benchmark will be looking to fill technical positions in supply-chain management, engineering, process development, business intelligence and administration.

Benchmark, which began operations in 1979, focuses on manufacturing and assembly, precision technology and specialized engineering, with operations in the United States as well as Mexico, China, Malaysia, Thailand, Romania and the Netherlands. 

It announced its relocation to Arizona from Angleton, Texas, in April. 

The company said it considers Arizona an ideal place to attract and develop top-notch talent. A partnership with Arizona State University will involve problem-solving teams and the creation of high-technology jobs, with the company having greater access to ASU business and engineering graduates.

Benchmark earned $17.5 million, or 35 cents a share, on revenue of $604 million during the third quarter of 2017, though that profit was down from $21.7 million, or 44 cents a share, on revenue of $574 million one year earlier.

With a stock-market value of $1.5 billion, Benchmark is worth about the same as computer-parts seller Insight Enterprises of Tempe and Mobile Mini, a Phoenix company that provides portable storage containers.

The current and future headquarters will house the corporate leadership team and those in finance, human resources, legal, marketing, operations and supply-chain management.

Benchmark’s departments that are focused on the internet of things, radio frequency and high-speed design also will move to the new location. 

“This is an exciting time for our company as we look forward to our new headquarters, which will allow us to grow in a single, cohesive location,” Paul Tufano, the company’s president and CEO, said in a statement.

Benchmark has 23 locations in eight nations. The company said its planned new headquarters in Tempe will give it quick access to global customers through nearby Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport. 

Reach the reporter at [email protected] or 602-444-8616.


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