Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced that Naturally Scientific US (NSUS), a joint venture between the UK-based Naturally Scientific and BCW Chemicals, a New York-based LLC, will locate to Rochester’s Eastman Business Park, bringing 50 new jobs to the region by 2016 and 170 jobs by 2018. The joint venture will use newly developed patented technology to reproduce high-value plant and vegetable oils.
“Start-up businesses like NSUS are vital to New York State’s efforts to boost the upstate economy through innovation,” said Governor Cuomo. “Eastman Business Park is integral to the Finger Lakes region’s economic future and bringing in a new bio-manufacturer will help us continue to revitalize the Park. This project will also provide a significant economic boost to Rochester and the region, and I am pleased to see this project coming together through the support of the Regional Council initiative.”
The Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council (FLREDC) Strategic Plan identified maintenance and expansion of Eastman Business Park in Rochester as its top priority. The Park’s management has identified three technology clusters—energy storage, biomaterials advanced manufacturing, and functional films and printing—that will enable it to attract new companies, propel future growth and help meet the goal of creating 1,800 jobs over the next five years at the site. NSUS is vital to building the biomaterials advanced manufacturing cluster at the Park.
Keith Wilson, managing partner of NSUS said, “When considering our first commercial facility in the United States, the combination of world class infrastructure at Eastman Business Park and supportive business environment in New York State, led by Governor Cuomo, made the choice easy. Governor Cuomo’s team laid out a thoughtful and compelling case that made it clear that choosing Eastman Business Park as our U.S. headquarters was in our company’s best interest, and in the best interest of the community.”
Kodak CEO Antonio M. Perez, said, "We welcome Naturally Scientific to Eastman Business Park, a premier, mixed use, industrial and technology site. Naturally Scientific, a biomaterials innovator, is a great fit with our infrastructure and joins other ground-breaking technologies being developed at the Park, including functional printed touch screen sensors from Kodak and its partners."
Eastman Business Park Director Michael Alt said, “Kodak enthusiastically welcomes Naturally Scientific to their new home on our growing campus. We see this as another important step in the creation of an overall biomaterials innovation cluster here at Eastman Business Park. Attracting more companies in this space could create a significant number of jobs, and, in turn, help to revitalize our community and make the region more competitive.”
NSUS will lease and renovate a 69,000 square foot manufacturing facility that will create plant oil to be used for a broad range of industrial applications. New York State will provide the company with two loans totaling $8 million for its $10 million project.
Naturally Scientific Technologies has spent five years creating its modular, rapid-growth and high-yield bio-manufacturing platform. The company has constructed a demonstration plant in Nottingham, U.K., that has been fully operational for two years. NSUS will make its oils from renewable hydrocarbon produced by another Rochester firm, Sweetwater Energy. Sweetwater’s process uses renewable plant materials that are both grown domestically and significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
“Our council has made the development of Eastman Business Park its highest priority,” said Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council Co-Chairs, University at Rochester President Joel Seligman and Wegmans Food Markets CEO Danny Wegman. “The combination of private and public investment in the Park, like we see with NSUS, is enabling the Park’s transformation into one of the nation’s leading industrial development sites and a source of significant regional economic growth. We welcome NSUS to Rochester.”
City of Rochester Mayor Thomas S. Richards said, “We are very excited to show the progress that is taking place thanks to the State and the Governor’s Economic Development Council initiative. Eastman Business Park is the number one focus of our region’s council and we look forward to working with the Governor and the regional council to make it a success.”
NSUS considered space in Florida for this project but ultimately formed a partnership with New York State to help finance the initiative. Empire State Development, the state’s economic development agency, will provide a $6 million capital loan and a $2 million NY Works working capital loan to NSUS for a portion of the building renovation, machinery acquisition, installation and related working capital costs at the Eastman Business Park. ESD has a preferred return on this loan and expects to be repaid in full plus interest.
Empire State Development President, CEO & Commissioner Kenneth Adams said, “Thanks to ESD’s assistance, financing was available for NSUS’s project in New York State which will bring dozens of jobs to New York State. Advanced manufacturing of biomaterials is a perfect fit for Eastman Business Park and I’m pleased to see this company grow and create jobs in Rochester.”
Assembly Majority Leader Joseph D. Morelle said, “As someone who has long recognized our region’s potential to thrive in the knowledge-based economy, I am encouraged by the many exciting developments taking place at Eastman Business Park. Projects like this confirm that Rochester is cementing itself as a center for groundbreaking technological innovation, something that is promising for our economy in the long-run. In addition, I applaud the state for taking a preferred return position, an approach that can and should be replicated for future startups in New York.”
Senator Joseph Robach said, “This is great news for the redevelopment of Eastman Business Park and the Greater Rochester economy. Naturally Scientific US is just the latest example in a growing list of new businesses that is bringing jobs and innovation to Eastman Business Park, and fits in perfectly with the new direction of this one of a kind business complex. Utilizing this existing space and creating new jobs is a win-win for the Rochester community.”