By Tom Bailey Jr
The Commercial Appeal
The governor, mayors and Greater Memphis Chamber rolled out the red carpet Wednesday for about a dozen people who advise businesses where in the world to build or relocate.
When all other factors among competing cities are about even, building relationships between local leaders and corporate decision-makers is crucial, said one of the visiting site-selection consultants, Robert M. Ady of the Chicago-based Ady International Company.
"Here, it's been demonstrated in spades, in my opinion,'' he said of Memphis. "Memphis has its act together."
Ady and his fellow travelers had just been treated to a lunch at The Peabody, given time with with FedEx chairman Frederick W. Smith, and greeted royally by Gov. Bill Haslam, Memphis Mayor A C Wharton and Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell.
After lunch, the Greater Memphis Chamber's "2011 Red Carpet Tour'' continued as the consultants boarded a bus. They were to see first-hand Memphis Bioworks, Frank C. Pidgeon Industrial Park and the CN/CSX intermodal facility, Smith & Nephew, and the Bartlett life science corridor.