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Gov. Bev Perdue today announced that Steven Roberts Original Desserts and Ticklebelly Desserts, creators, manufacturers and distributors of frozen desserts, will open a new bakery in Robeson County. The company plans to create 342 jobs and invest $4 million during the next five years in Pembroke. The project was made possible in part by a $392,000 grant from the One North Carolina Fund.
“We are working hard every day to bring jobs to the people of North Carolina - in particular, the areas that have been hit hardest by the economic recession,” said Gov. Perdue, who joined company leaders for the announcement in Pembroke. “Today’s announcement is a great step for Pembroke and will help more than 300 hundred families.”
Steven Roberts Original Desserts develops and produces a broad line of innovative, premium frozen desserts, selling them directly to restaurants, hotels, theaters and grocery stores. Ticklebelly Desserts leads the industry with innovative, first-to-market gourmet creations for the consumer marketplace including dessert shots, cake pops, dessert minis, cupcakes, molten cakes, cheesecakes and infused cakes. The company plans to purchase and renovate a building in Pembroke to become their third bakery. This new facility will allow expanded production, add manufacturing and shipping redundancy and facilitate scaling dessert production to each client’s needs.
Salaries will vary by job function, but the average annual wage for the new jobs will be $22,926 plus benefits. The Robeson County average annual wage is $26,728.
“Steven Roberts Original Desserts and Ticklebelly are thrilled to be a part of the Pembroke community,” stated Charles Kosmont, chairman. “Innovation is at the heart of everything we do, and we look forward to having our Pembroke team members help us to continue to be first to market with innovative, trendsetting desserts,” Kosmont noted.
The One NC Fund provides financial assistance, through local governments, to attract business projects that will stimulate economic activity and create new jobs in the state. Companies receive no money up front and must meet job creation and investment performance standards to qualify for grant funds. These grants also require and are contingent upon local matches.
“Today’s wonderful news would never have been announced if our economic developers could not deploy tools like the One North Carolina fund to help bring jobs to Robeson County and throughout eastern North Carolina,” said Rep. Charles Graham, of Lumberton. “We fought to keep those incentives for just this reason: to put our friends and neighbors back to work.”
“I want to welcome Steven Roberts Desserts to Robeson County, as they join a long line of companies that understand the benefits of our longstanding support for investing in education and worker training,” said Sen. Michael Walters, of Fairmount. “They know that when they open up shop, an educated, skilled workforce will be ready for them.”
North Carolina continues to have a top-ranked business climate. Through Gov. Perdue’s JobsNOW initiative, the state works aggressively to create jobs, train and retrain its workforce, and lay the foundation for a strong and sustainable economic future.
Through use of the One NC Fund, more than 50,000 jobs and $9 billion in investment have been created since 2001. Other partners that helped with this project include: the N.C. Department of Commerce, N.C. Community Colleges, North Carolina’s Southeast, the Town of Pembroke, Robeson County and the Robeson County Committee of 100.