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This story was updated at 6:08 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 22, 2019, with more information.

Digital agency Viget will open an office in Chattanooga in 2020, with plans to hire 25 local employees.

"The city has embraced tech and innovation, becoming one of the first cities with access to gigabit internet and a smart grid, laying the groundwork to become one of America's smartest cities," said Viget CEO Brian Williams. "It has all the ingredients needed for a sustainable creative tech community: solid infrastructure, great dining and entertainment options, countless outdoor activities, welcoming neighborhoods to live in, and a supportive entrepreneurial culture among both digital and traditional businesses."

Two members of the Viget leadership team are already at work in the Edney Building in Chattanooga's Innovation District, he added. "We're lucky to have lots of friends there already, including Carbon FiveSasha Group (a Vayner X company), Humanaut, and Simple Focus."

Viget, a strategy, design and development firm, specializes in branding, designing and building software products and platforms. The company launched in Washington, D.C., nearly 20 years ago, and has since opened offices in Durham, North Carolina, and Boulder, Colorado.

Major Viget clients have included ESPN, Progressive and Ad Council.

"Viget's decision to locate here shows once again that more and more technological companies are making Hamilton County their first choice for an expanded location," said said Hamilton County Mayor Jim Coppinger.

The Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce recently launched its Chattanooga Climbs initiative, a 5-year plan to promote investment in the area and prepare more residents to compete for the jobs that employers struggle to fill in the low unemployment environment.

The Chamber has looked at gaps in the talent pipeline across occupation and industry clusters, and found talent shortages in all of them, with the greatest shortfall in the software and information technology areas, Chamber officials have said.

As part of the Chattanooga Climbs initiative, the Chamber has targeted several industries leaders hope to see grow, including creative media. A mid-size market with a strong infrastructure is a strong choice for growth and stability, Williams said.

"By focusing on smaller U.S. markets that offer quality of life and lower cost of living, we're able to achieve our growth plans in a more predictable, sustainable way," he said. "We think Chattanooga is a Viget kind of town, and we're excited to be a part of the community."

Contact Mary Fortune at mfortune@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6653. Follow her on Twitter at @maryfortune.

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