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EDA offers $32M to bring Brooklyn biotech to former Roche campus

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The former Hoffmann-La Roche campus on the border of Nutley and Clifton.
The former Hoffmann-La Roche campus on the border of Nutley and Clifton. - ()

A Brooklyn-based biotech company was awarded $32.3 million in incentives over 10 years from the state’s Economic Development Authority to move its headquarters to the 116-acre former Hoffmann-La Roche North American headquarters campus on the border of Nutley and Clifton.

Modern Meadow, which synthesizes high-end leather in an “animal-free process,” was given the award during the EDA’s Thursday meeting.

Modern Meadow’s move to the state would create 263 new jobs. The company would invest more than $20 million in a 120,000-square-foot facility, some of which will newly constructed, according to the EDA meeting minutes. The gross benefit to the state is expected to be $63 million.

The awards

Company: Modern Meadows
Service: Manufacturer and supplier of synthetic leather
Location: Nutley/Clifton
Award: 10-year, $32.3 million Grow NJ
Benefit: $63 million to the state over 10 years
Notable: Would create 263 new jobs in a new facility at the former Hoffman-LaRoche campus in Nutley and Clifton

Company: Jet.com
Service: Online retail shopping site
Location: Hoboken
Award: 10-year, $25.8 million Grow NJ
Benefit: $59 million to the state over 20 years
Notable: Would create 322 new jobs

Company: Nuts.com
Service: Online supplier of gourmet nuts and dried fruit
Location: Jersey City
Award: Undisclosed
Benefit: $24 million to the state over 12 years
Notable: New space in Jersey City will create 150 new jobs

Company: 1661 Inc. (operates under the name GOAT)
Service: Mobile marketplace for sneakers
Location: Secaucus
Award: $964,122 over 10 years
Benefit: $24 million to the state
Notable: New manufacturing space would create 50 new jobs

Company: Richland Glass Co.
Service: Customized glass products manufacturer
Location: Vineland
Award: $1.8 million over 10 years
Benefit: Creation of eight new jobs and retention of 101 existing jobs

The EDA is seeking to entice the company to the Roche campus instead of moving its headquarters to Farmingdale, New York, a property that is also under consideration.

The EDA also awarded $25.8 million in incentives over 10 years to Jet.com, now a Walmart subsidiary. The e-commerce company is seeking to expand its headquarters in Hoboken by moving into a 40,000-square-foot facility. The expansion is expected to create 322 new jobs and a net benefit to the state of $59 million.

The EDA is eager to keep Jet.com in the state, as it has discussed the possibility of moving into Walmart’s headquarters in Arkansas. The online retail company was acquired by Walmart last summer for $3.3 billion, and questions have swirled since then as to whether it would continue to be a tech leader in the state or move its operations elsewhere.

The EDA also approved tax credits for online gourmet food seller Nuts.com to lease a new facility in Jersey City. The approval was made as part of the EDA’s Grow NJ program.

Nuts.com has agreed to lease a 24,000-square-foot space in downtown Jersey City, and will invest millions to create a new technology and product development center.

The expansion is expected to create more than 150 new jobs in the state, with median wages of $85,000. The company would maintain its primary distribution and manufacturing operations in Cranford, where it employs 158.

Nuts.com was considering its operations to Brooklyn, but with the new tax incentives, agreed to a 12-year commitment to the state. The gross benefit is expected to be $24 million over that period, the EDA said.

“I am happy to announce, with support through the Grow NJ Program, Nuts.com will move forward with our expansion in the state,” Nuts.com CEO Jeffrey Braverman said in a written statement.

“My grandfather established this company in New Jersey 88 years ago, and we’re excited to continue his legacy and execute on our vision of offering the highest-quality product, with excellent customer service and dynamic employment opportunities.”

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