PROVIDENCE (Oct. 30, 2017)—Gov. Gina Raimondo and the Board of Directors for the Rhode Island Commerce Corporation tonight approved economic incentives to lure two companies from Massachusetts to Rhode Island. The board also voted to issue Innovation Vouchers to support the R&D work of three Rhode Island small businesses.
"Today's news offers more proof that Rhode Island's economy is on the move," Raimondo said. "Every business that brings jobs here because of our Commerce programs creates an opportunity for Rhode Islanders. Businesses already creating jobs here need support through targeted programs like our Innovation Vouchers. These are strategies with successful track records in other states. We cannot stop working to strengthen our economy until every middle-class family has the security and stability they deserve."
"The Qualified Jobs tax credit has now helped 20 companies land and expand in Rhode Island," said Rhode Island Secretary of Commerce Stefan Pryor. "We have granted more than double this number in Innovation Vouchers – often to smaller companies that are aiming to grow. Rhode Island is on a roll – with both smaller and larger businesses contributing to the momentum and creating opportunities for Rhode Islanders."
Xeros Inc. is the cleaning technology division of Xeros Technology Group, based in Sheffield, England. The company, which is moving to Rhode Island from Seekonk, Massachusetts, uses a patented technology to reduce consumption in water-intensive operations such as commercial laundries. The company is approved for incentives under the Qualified Jobs Incentive Act for approximately $785,000 to create 25 jobs and has the potential to receive additional credits for creating up to 40 jobs. The business plans to move to an engineering facility at a location still to be determined.
"The tools put in place by Governor Raimondo made our decision to relocate our Engineering facility to Rhode Island economically feasible for Xeros," said George Silvia, Vice President of Engineering. "We thank the team at the Rhode Island Commerce Corporation and are excited about our growth and success in the Ocean State."
Alliance Paper was approved for Qualified Job Tax Credits of approximately $297,000 for moving its operation and 20 jobs from Fall River, Massachusetts, to Pawtucket. Alliance is a paper products manufacturer and could receive additional credits for creating up to 30 jobs.
"Alliance Paper is very excited to relocate and join the Pawtucket community, and its great heritage in the American Industrial Revolution," said Jeff Jones, President of Alliance Paper Company. "This opportunity offers great growth potential, and without the financial incentives from the Rhode Island Commerce Corporation, this move would not have been possible. I'd personally like to thank the Governor and the dedicated staff of the Commerce Corporation for bringing this to fruition."
The Board also approved three Innovation Vouchers. The Innovation Voucher program is designed to help spur innovation in the local economy by funding up to $50,000 for research and development between small Rhode Island businesses and local knowledge partners—namely colleges, universities and hospitals. With these awards, there have now been 43 Innovation Voucher recipients.
Modus Tech-Wear of Providence will receive $50,000 to partner with the Chemical Engineering Department at the University of Rhode Island to develop a lightweight, rechargeable battery with improved longevity for use in smart wearable products.
CBC will receive $48,106 to partner with the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Rhode Island to continue an existing project on wind energy. The project will expand on a previous project that enabled the company to scale up its model unit of a power-generating wind turbine to a larger preproduction unit.
Alcinous Pharmaceuticals will receive $50,000 to amass a large library of promising drug molecules that can be used in developing cancer therapies with superior efficacy and tolerability. They will be partnering with the University of Rhode Island's Department of Chemistry.