Governor Dannel P. Malloy announced that the headquarters of Bob's Discount Furniture, a national furniture store chain, will expand in Manchester with a new project that will significantly increase the company's space, retain 326 people, and create 125 new jobs in the next five years.
The company is planning to build a new 103,000 square foot building adjacent to its current 90,000 square-foot-facility in Manchester. The new building will accommodate future growth and serve the company's long-term operating requirements - consolidating management and administrative functions of the business from across other states within a single dedicated corporate campus here in Connecticut.
"Bob's Discount Furniture is a great Connecticut story - and obviously a household name that will add more than 100 new jobs here. We're committed to helping our small businesses expand in to large ones. This significant expansion is no doubt a step in the right direction," Governor Malloy said. "Bob's is committed to Connecticut, and Connecticut is committed to Bob's. We're proud to support this expansion project to grow jobs and grow our economy."
Founded in Manchester in 1991, Bob's Discount Furniture now has 69 stores across 12 Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states, and recently expanded into the Midwest with five Chicago-area store openings last month.
President and CEO Mike Skirvin said, "I would like to thank Governor Malloy and the DECD for working with us and supporting our expansion in Connecticut. The vision of Bob Kaufman and the Bob's culture and business model was born and bred in Connecticut. Like so many other highly successful Connecticut based companies, Bob's is deeply rooted in educational advancement, community involvement and dedication to their work force. The Town of Manchester has been a great location for Bob's for many years and it is the company's desire to remain and grow in the town."
The Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) will provide a ten-year, $7 million low-interest loan to support the project. State funding may be used for machinery and equipment and leasehold improvements. In addition, the company is eligible for a $1.7 million grant to train employees and up to $11 million in tax credits through the Urban and Industrial Sites Reinvestment Tax Credit Program.
"DECD's partnership with Bob's Discount Furniture is exciting news on all fronts," DECD Commissioner Catherine Smith said. "This long-time Connecticut company will continue growing right here at home, at their original home, creating jobs and making capital investment in our state. The company and its employees support nonprofit organizations with sponsorships and charitable contributions, and every year it donates more than $2 million to charities, making Connecticut a better place for all."
The proposed development is subject to further local and state approvals, which the company will initiate this spring.
"These long-term, permanent jobs are great for Manchester, the region and for Connecticut," State Senator Steve Cassano (D-Manchester), who has been involved in the Bob's negotiations for several months, said. "These are the types of private-sector projects that we need to be investing in if we are to keep Connecticut moving forward. I want to thank Governor Malloy and Commissioner Smith for all of their successful and hard work in securing Bob's corporate headquarters right here in Manchester."