Governor Lincoln D. Chafee and the Quonset Development Corporation (QDC) announced today that its board of directors is set to approve a 50-year lease that would make Greencore USA a new tenant at Quonset Business Park. Greencore, a convenience food manufacturer, plans to build a 107,000-square-foot facility, which would house more than 390 employees. The new facility could also be expanded another 40,000 square feet, positioning Greencore to employ more than 600 people at Quonset at full build out.
"This is a good day for Rhode Island, and another indication of how investing in our state assets can help create more jobs and propel our economy in the right direction," Governor Chafee said. "I commend Greencore for bringing a growing company here, and we look forward to showing the world how our resources and workforce can help a company achieve great success."
Under the terms of the proposed agreement, Greencore will construct a new facility on a 15-acre parcel that is part of Quonset's Site-Readiness Program. The QDC has completed all the permitting and engineering that a developer would have to conduct as part of due diligence in order to get a project under way. The success of the Site-Readiness Program is due in part to the collaboration with various state agencies, including the Department of Environmental Management (DEM) and the Coastal Resources Management Council (CRMC), who were instrumental in securing all the baseline permits that a new business would need to develop the parcel. As a result, Greencore will be able to break ground on their facility by May 1 of this year.
The new lease also includes an incentive package providing discounts based on the length of the lease and for job creation and total payroll. The incentive program is the standard incentive offered by the QDC on all future leases. The lease term discount accounts for a 25-percent rent reduction in exchange for the 50-year-lease commitment. The employment incentive provides an additional discount based on wages paid by Greencore to its employees in the future.
"We are pleased to be coming to Quonset Business Park and the state of Rhode Island," said Liam McClennon, CEO at Greencore USA. "In searching for the right location, we wanted to find a place where we could build quickly, have easy access to the major cities on the East coast, and be in a place where we could grow in the future. Quonset met all those criteria perfectly – it is a world-class facility."
Greencore is a leading manufacturer of convenience food in the UK and the U.S. with a fast growing food-to-go business in the U.S., serving both the convenience and small-store channel and the grocery channel. It has strong market positions in the UK convenience food market across food-to-go, chilled prepared meals, chilled soups and sauces, ambient sauces and pickles, cakes and desserts, and Yorkshire puddings.
"We look forward to having Greencore join our growing list of more than 175 companies at Quonset Business Park and having them here for many years to come," Steven J. King, the managing director of the QDC, said. "Quonset is the ideal place for companies to grow and succeed. We can help them do it, which in turn will help move Rhode Island's economy forward."
Marcel A. Valois, executive director of the Rhode Island Commerce Corporation and chairman of the QDC's board of directors, said, "The Quonset Site-Readiness and incentive programs were important factors in securing Greencore as a new tenant at the Quonset Business Park. We compete with neighboring states for business growth and having pre-permitted, shovel-ready land available makes us more competitive."
Quonset Business Park is now home to more than 175 companies, employing approximately 9,500 people in full-time and part-time jobs across several industries. The Port of Davisville at Quonset is also one of the top 10 auto-importers in North America.
Today's news follows the recent announcement of a new 25-year lease at Quonset for Electric Boat. The submarine maker is expected add 600,000 square feet to their existing facilities and up to 3,000 more jobs over the next 10 years for the construction of Ohio class replacement submarines.