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Utah’s Information Technology and Software industry is thriving, and with the assistance of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED) incentive program, Instructure, Inc., announced that it will expand in Utah.
“The education industry of Utah benefits from keeping companies like Instructure here at home. Education is my number one priority and a cornerstone of our economic development,” Gov. Gary R. Herbert said. “The involvement of key players like Instructure is vital to the highly-skilled and well-educated workforce Utah has the capacity to produce.”
Instructure estimates that it will bring 655 potential new jobs to Utah over the seven-year lifetime of the agreement. The average annual wage and benefits of these newly incented positions will be 125 percent of Salt Lake County’s yearly annual wage, including benefits. These wages and benefits will total about $235 million throughout the seven-year agreement with the state.
Instructure’s headquarters are currently located in Sandy, Utah; however, the company plans to expand in Cottonwood Heights.
“Instructure is growing faster than we anticipated,” said Josh Coates, CEO of Instructure. “At the close of 2010 we had a handful of employees and almost no revenue to speak of. Today we are closing the year with 200 employees and nearly 300 educational institutions under contract, including all of Utah’s public institutions of higher education.”
Instructure was founded in 2008 by two graduate students in the computer science program at Brigham Young University who wanted to create a simple and easy-to-use technology platform to facilitate learning at high schools, colleges and universities. The company launched the Canvas learning management system in February 2011 and now less than two years later Canvas is used by more than 4 million learners from top-notch institutions, such as Auburn University, Brown University and the University of Washington.
To fund the company’s expansion, Instructure will make a $2.1 million capital investment. It will also pay more than $9.4 million in new state taxes over the seven-year life of the agreement.
“Instructure’s choice to stay in Utah shows the strength of Utah’s incentive program,” GOED executive director Spencer Eccles said. “We are pleased that Instructure chose Utah as the place they want to expand. The competition both domestically and internationally was significant.”
The GOED Board of Directors has approved a $1,892,969 Economic Development Tax Increment Financing (EDTIF) post-performance refundable tax credit, or 20 percent of the new state revenue paid by Instructure over the seven-year lifetime of the agreement.