MN: DEED Awards Promote Business Growth in 11 Communities, Creating 658 Jobs

9 Dec, 2021

Eleven Minnesota businesses are investing up to $607 million in the state, leveraging DEED awards totaling $6 million--a little less than $3 million from the Job Creation Fund (JCF) and a little more than $3 million from the Minnesota Investment Fund (MIF). 
Eleven businesses, five in Greater Minnesota and six in the Twin Cities metro, are receiving funding awards once they meet all the established criteria. These projects are expected to create 658 new jobs at their project sites and retain 372. 
“The Job Creation Fund and Minnesota Investment Fund are excellent tools to grow the Minnesota economy and highlight why Minnesota is a great state to do businesses,” said Department of Employment and Economic Development Commissioner Steve Grove. “I congratulate these 11 Minnesota Communities and businesses on their growth.” 
These investments through the JCF and MIF programs build off the recent launch of Minnesota’s “Build What Matters” campaign as well as a recent trade mission pitching Minnesota as the problem-solving capital of the United States. Minnesota has long been a state that builds businesses that make global transformations in a variety of sectors. 
The JCF provides financial incentives to new and expanding businesses that meet certain job creation and capital investment targets. Eligible companies may receive up to $1 million for creating or retaining high-paying jobs and for constructing or renovating facilities or making other property improvements. Companies investing more than $25 million are eligible for up to $2 million in JCF benefits. Eight Minnesota companies received JCF awards. 
Seven companies received a MIF award. The MIF provides loans of up to $1 million to companies that create and retain high-quality jobs with a focus on industrial, manufacturing and technology-related industries to increase the local and state tax base and improve Minnesota’s economic vitality. 
Individual project details listed below; JCF funding will be awarded when criteria for each project are met: 
Associated Wholesale Grocers, Inc. St. Cloud– JCF $175,000   
Associated Wholesale Grocers, Inc. is a cooperative food wholesaler for independent supermarkets. This project involves the construction of a new state-of-the-art food distribution facility in St. Cloud. The total project cost is approximately $75 million, and it is expected to create 114 qualifying jobs in the first year with an average wage of $23 an hour.   
Chemstar Products Company, Carlton – JCF $140,000 
For over 55 years, Chemstar Products Co. has been the leading provider of starch-based polymers across industrial applications.  A Minnesota-based company, Chemstar is committing $1.5 million in capital improvement projects at their Carlton, MN production facility. This investment will assist in plant and warehouse expansion and will increase their workforce by seven qualifying jobs, paying an average of almost $20 per hour.  
Clear Edge Technical Fabrics, Brooklyn Park - MIF $125,000 
Clear Edge supplies industrial filtration products worldwide.  Applications include filtering liquids from solids, dewatering, filtering dust and purifying hot gases. They are adding fabrication to their current facility in Brooklyn Park and investing $695,000 in addition to the MIF award. The project will create 47 new jobs with an average wage of $20.35 per hour. 
Data Metalcraft Inc, Arlington – JCF $175,000 – MIF $350,000 
Data Metalcraft Inc (DMI) is a precision metal fabrication assembly and component manufacturer. This project consists of them relocating to a larger facility in Arlington. The total project is expected to cost around $11 million and is supported in part by awards from the Minnesota Investment fund and the Jobs Creation fund. The project will create 50 qualifying jobs with an average wage of $26 an hour. Funding will be awarded once the projects meet the established criteria. 
Home Depot U.S.A., Rosemount – MIF $375,000  
The Home Depot, Inc. operates an expansive network of distribution centers through its subsidiary Home Depot U.S.A, Inc., in the U.S., Canada and Mexico as part of its strategic investment in our supply chain network to offer same day/next day delivery to 90% of the United States. The new warehouse and distribution facility in the Rosemount Business Park is slated to include a 417,600 square feet office/warehouse building, a 210,400 square feet outdoor storage area and more. The project will create 50 new jobs. 
Huber Engineered Woods, Cohasset – JCF $1,820,000 – MIF $1,000,000 
Huber Engineered Woods is a subsidiary of the J.M. Huber Corporation and is a leader in specialty engineered woods and high-performance building solutions. The company is increasing their manufacturing capacity in Cohasset with a new 800,000 square foot facility. The total project cost is $439 million, and it is expected to create 123 qualifying jobs in the first three years, with an average wage of $31.33 an hour. In addition to MIF and JCF funding, this project will receive $35 million in assistance from the Department of Iron Range Resources & Rehabilitation and 21st Century Fund, $12 million via a TIF from the City of Cohasset, a $6 million Itasca County tax abatement, $6.5 million from MN Power and $2 million from MN BDPI. All state funding will be awarded once the project meets the established awards criteria. 
Milk Specialties Company, Clara City – JCF $175,000 – MIF $450,000 
Milk Specialties Company (MSC) is a market leader in specialty functional ingredients industry. MSC is expanding the production capacity of its Clara City facility by adding a third extrusion line and improving building infrastructure in the facility. The total project cost is $2.38 million and is supported with funding from the JCF and MIF. The company expects to create 55 qualifying jobs within the first three years. Funding will be awarded once the projects meet the established criteria. 
Pelican Bio Thermal, LLC, Maple Grove - MIF $315,000  
Pelican Bio Thermal, founded in 2004, recently relocated headquarters to Maple Grove. They manufacture temperature-controlled packaging for the life science industry and are now a major source of packaging for COVID-19 vaccines. In addition to the MIF award, the company is investing $728,000 in expanding manufacturing capacity and automation. The project will create 50 new jobs with an average wage of $24.47 per hour. 
Qorvo Biotechnologies, Plymouth – JCF $175,000 
Qorvo is expanding its biotechnology product development and operation in Plymouth and plans to increase its existing footprint by 13,500 square feet. The total project is expected to create 54 qualifying jobs in the first three years to support the growth of its Qorvo Omnia™ Diagnostic Test Platform and COVID Antigen Test, recently authorized by the FDA. DEED is supporting the project with a JCF award, and funding will be awarded once the project meets the established criteria. 
Switchback Medical, LLC, Brooklyn Park – JCF $175,000- MIF $400,000
Switchback Medical provides single-source contract design and manufacturing for interventional medical devices. The project will purchase a 120,000 square foot facility in Brooklyn park. The total project cost is $10.77 million and is expected to create 92 qualifying jobs in three years with an average wage of $31 an hour. In addition to JCF and MIF funding, the City of Brooklyn Park Economic Development Authority (EDA) is making a loan of $300,000 through its partner, the Brooklyn Park Development Corporation (BPDC).   
The Outdoor GreatRoom Company LLC, Lakeville - JCF $160,000  
Outdoor GreatRoom manufactures upscale products for outdoor living spaces, like gas firepits, tables, and outdoor kitchen supplies. The woman-owned business is expanding in Lakeville by leasing 94,500 square foot warehouse and office space in a new industrial building. The total project cost is $953,500 to adapt the new facilities. The expansion will create 16 qualifying jobs in the next three years with an average wage of $20.38 an hour.