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JBS USA moves corporate jobs from Green Bay to Greeley headquarters

Bill Jackson

JBS S.A. is relocating corporate offices from the former Smithfield Beef Group in Green Bay, Wis., to the company’s North American headquarters in Greeley.

Chandler Keys, spokesman for JBS USA, would not say exactly how many jobs were coming to Greeley, but he said they are all senior management level positions, and that the move is about 90 percent complete. The move could create other jobs in the future, he added.

According to the Green Bay Press Gazette, 15 to 30 Green Bay jobs are involved.

Larry Burkhardt, president of Upstate Colorado Economic Development, said those “are good jobs” coming to the JBS headquarters in west Greeley.

“I’m encouraged to see that kind of consolidation that puts a focus on their headquarters here,” Burkhardt said.

Greeley City Manager Roy Otto had the same type of reaction.

“This is very good news, especially in light of Agrium leaving to go to Loveland,” Otto said. “It’s not close to a job-for-job situation, but it demonstrates the emphasis JBS has for Greeley. We can just hope those people buy homes here in Greeley.”

Keys said Rich Vesta, the former chief executive officer of the Smithfield Beef Group, heads the contingent moving to the Greeley headquarters. He will become the chief operating officer of U.S. beef for JBS, working with Wesley Batista, president of JBS USA.

Vesta has been put in charge of putting the company’s North American beef team together.

“There are several people involved whose jobs may be duplicated both in Greeley and Green Bay, so there may be some reduction in jobs as a result of that,” Keys said. “But, at the same time, there are some people in Green Bay who may not want to move because their families are established there, so right now it’s just hard to set a number. Let’s just say there are a lot of jobs moving to Greeley.”

But, he said, once Vesta puts his team together, that could open some sales jobs, although some of those sales and fiduciary jobs will stay in Green Bay. The Green Bay packing plant will remain in operation, he said.

JBS S.A. of Brazil purchased Smithfield Beef Group and other operations from Smithfield Foods last year.

“Let me put is this way. There are a lot of Green Bay Packer fans moving to Greeley so the dynamics at the company headquarters will be real interesting when football season starts,” Keys said.

Where does that put Batista and other Brazilians at the headquarters?

“I think the Brazilians are still trying to figure out American football. When you say football they think World Cup soccer,” Keys said.


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