CT: Governor Rell Announces Higher One Expansion in New Haven’s Science Park
20 Dec, 2010
High-Tech Financial Services Company to Keep, Create 368 Jobs
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Governor M. Jodi Rell recently announced that New Haven-based Higher One Inc. plans to expand its operations in Science Park, a move that ensures continued investment in the former industrial property, retains 165 jobs and will eventually create 203 new positions.
Higher One, a technology and payment services company focused on higher education, currently occupies building No. 25 at Science Park, a business incubator located at the former Winchester Repeating Arms Co. site. The company, in partnership with Winstanley Enterprises, Forest City Residential Group and Science Park Development Corporation, plans a $45 million project to rehabilitate two vacant buildings in the development to be used as Higher One’s new headquarters.
“Higher One is a genuine Connecticut success story – and it’s one that we’re all reveling in today,” Governor Rell said during a groundbreaking ceremony at the site. “The main characters are three ambitious young men who brought their imaginations, creativity and drive to Yale University about 10 years ago. The setting is Science Park and the themes are innovation and collaboration. Innovation in what Higher One founders Sean Glass, Miles Lasater and Mark Volchek accomplished – and collaboration in the work of the developers, the City of New Haven and, I am proud to say, the state, which has been an eager partner in the development of Science Park and is aggressively promoting all of its high-tech industries.
“A real home-grown company – one that germinated here, established its roots here and grew into an industry leader here – is now investing in its future in Connecticut,” the Governor said. “The state is proud to partner with Higher One and help retain this growing company as it prepares for its next stage of development.”
Higher One moved to Science Park in 2004 with 24 employees. Since then, the company has taken off, having recently been selected as one of Connecticut Technology Council 2010 Marcum Tech Top 40 Winners and ranked No. 140 on Deloitte’s 2010 Technology Fast 500 list of fastest growing companies. The company now employs more than 360 people at offices in New Haven and Oakland, Calif.
The New Haven project calls for environmental assessment, remediation and hazardous material abatement and build-out of 140,000 square feet at Science Park. The company expects to add more than 200 new positions in New Haven by January 2015.
“We were looking for a location that would enable us to experience significant cost-savings over time, provide space for sufficient future expansion and give us flexibility to create a positive workspace to help us attract and retain top quality employees,” explained Mark Volchek, co-founder, Chairman and CFO at Higher One. “We are very happy that we could find such a location in New Haven.”
Governor Rell noted that the Science Park development reflects the emphasis her Administration has placed on brownfield remediation, taking abandoned former industrial sites and – through environmental remediation – returning them to productive economic activity.
“We couldn’t be more thrilled to build on the successes already going on in Science Park,” the Governor said. “The city and the state are partnering to transform this complex from a wasteland into prime real estate coveted by tech-savvy businesses. Science Park and its incubator atmosphere is a place where home-grown innovation and entrepreneurialism can thrive.”
Higher One, the brainchild of three Yale students who developed their idea while undergraduates at the university in 2000, helps institutions of higher learning manage their business operations and provides improved services to students. Higher One works with colleges, universities and students to improve refund, payment, electronic billing or payment plan processes. Glass, Lasater and Volchek started the Yale Entrepreneurial Society before creating Higher One.
The state Department of Economic and Community Development is assisting the project with $5.5 million in grant funding for environmental remediation and construction and up to $18.5 million in tax credits through the Urban and Industrial Sites Reinvestment Tax Credit Program. The Connecticut Development Authority plans to support the project with $1 million in sales and use tax exemptions, subject to approval from its board of directors.
About Higher One
Founded in 2000, Higher One (NYSE: ONE) is a leading company focused on helping college business offices manage operations and provide enhanced service to students. Through a full array of services from refunds, payments, electronic billing, payment plans and more, Higher One works closely with colleges and universities to ensure students receive financial aid refunds quickly, can pay tuition and bills online, make on-campus and community purchases and learn the basics of financial management.
Higher One provides its services to more than 4.8 million students at distinguished public and private higher education institutions nationwide. More information about Higher One can be found at www.HigherOne.com.