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PHILADELPHIA-Atlanta-based CoreNet Global selects Philadelphia as host city for its convention, April 23-26 2006 and anticipates drawing up to 3,000 corporate real estate executives, commercial real estate professionals and economic development agencies to the biannual event, which will be held at Marriott Philadelphia and the Convention Center. In announcing the selection at a press conference at PECO Energy Co. headquarters here, Peggy Binzel, CoreNet president and CEO, attributed the choice to Pennsylvania’s pro-business climate and efforts to recruit new business.

Beyond the $7.1 million in direct local impact, estimated by the Philadelphia Convention and Visitors Bureau, the convention provides the opportunity “to get Philadelphia on the short list” when corporate site selection decision-makers look for business locations, said Denis O’Brien, PECO’s president. Binzel said CoreNet Global’s members represent 75% of Fortune 500 companies and encompass $1.2 trillion and more than 700 billion sf of office and industrial real estate assets.

“This region is in a fight for its economic life,” said Mark Schweiker, president of the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce and ex-governor of Pennsylvania. “The unit of competition today is a region, not a city or a county alone.” He urged representatives of the 11 surrounding counties, which include parts of New Jersey and Delaware, to consider “the bridges that connect us rather than the water that separates us. We’re the country’s fourth biggest region, and together we can win this fight.”

Stephanie Nadoff, City Commerce Director, promised Mayor John Street’s support in “showcasing Philadelphia as the location for doing business.” Dennis Yablonsky, secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Community & Economic Development, thanked CoreNet for its advice concerning Gov. Ed Rendell’s plan to invest $1.4 billion into site preparation and infrastructure.

Select Greater Philadelphia, a $16-million tri-state marketing effort affiliated with the Chamber of Commerce, is sponsoring the conference along with PECO and CoreNet’s Philadelphia Chapter. Greg Byrnes, PECO’s director of economic development, is chairman of the local chapter and was instrumental in the selection of Philadelphia for the summit. An advisory board for the event currently includes about two dozen of the area’s top real estate executives and related professionals, and Schweiker promised significant additional support by the end of this month.

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