Further enhancing the Christie Administration’s efforts to stimulate business growth and drive innovation in the State, the Board of the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA) approved assistance to encourage a diverse range of manufacturing and technology companies to remain and expand in New Jersey.
“The Grow NJ and Angel investor Tax Credit programs have significantly improved New Jersey’s standing in these increasingly important segments of our economy,” said EDA Chief Executive Officer Michele Brown.
Brown noted that since the EDA began accepting applications under the enhanced Grow NJ program last November, 23 projects have been awarded tax credits tied to the creation of nearly 2,900 new jobs and the retention of more than 2,580 “at-risk” jobs. Of the projects approved to date, nine awards included a bonus increase for being in the targeted industry of manufacturing and six included a bonus for being in the targeted industry of technology.
At the April meeting, the EDA Board approved Grow NJ awards spanning Bergen, Middlesex and Camden counties. This includes an award to encourage ENER-G Rudox Inc. to establish an advanced manufacturing facility for cogeneration and energy-efficiency systems, as well as a state-of-the-art network operations center, in East Rutherford instead of Wisconsin. A Grow NJ also was approved to encourage SodaStream USA, Inc. to expand its presence in Pennsauken, rather than a competing location in Utah. With its lease expiring at year end, a Grow NJ was awarded to Sys-tech Solutions to encourage the technology company to relocate and expand in Plainsboro over Pennsylvania.
Brown also noted that the Angel Investor Tax Credit Program has achieved considerable results since it was signed into law last year. The program provides credits against New Jersey corporation business or gross income tax for 10 percent of a qualified investment in an emerging technology business with a physical presence in New Jersey and that conducts research, manufacturing, or technology commercialization in the state.
Since EDA began accepting applications to the program last July, 30 investments have been approved, representing the injection of $14.7 million of capital into New Jersey technology and life sciences companies. Businesses that benefitted in the first quarter of 2014 include Bat Blue Networks, a leading provider of Cloud-based Virtual Perimeter Services based in Clifton, and Totowa-based VectraCor, a company working to develop and commercialize a portfolio of products to simplify and provide a faster method for diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of cardiac and neurological diseases.
At the meeting, the EDA also provided an update on its Commercialization Center for Innovative Technologies (CCIT), which is part of the Technology Centre of New Jersey campus in North Brunswick. With successful graduates like Genewiz and Chromocell Corporation, CCIT continues to be New Jersey’s leading life sciences incubator. In the first quarter of 2014, CCIT welcomed three tenants – Novanex, a medical device company that develops and commercializes innovative devices and technology to monitor or detect disease conditions or status; VClinBio, a scientific research organization that provides services in translational, clinical and preclinical research for advancing drug discovery, personalized therapeutics, biomarkers research and clinical diagnostics validation; and, Crystal Pharmatech, a technology-driven contract research organization that focuses on materials science and engineering for drug development. Additionally, specialty pharmaceutical company Ascendia Pharmaceuticals executed a lease for an additional 1,000square feet of space at the center.
EDA Board meetings are typically held at 10 a.m. on the second Tuesday of each month at 36 West State Street in Trenton. The Board meeting schedule, as well as Board agendas and minutes, are available at www.njeda.com. All Board actions will take effect at the expiration of the statutory period for the Governor’s review and consideration of the meeting minutes.
The EDA is part of the state’s results-driven Partnership for Action, the hub for all economic development activity in New Jersey. The Partnership is comprised of four interconnected and highly focused organizational elements: Choose New Jersey, the Business Action Center, the Office of the Secretary of Higher Education and the EDA.