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Empire State Development Blog

Find the latest news on economic development in New York State

We feature stories of innovative businesses that are making New York their home, plus offer updates on economic activity and development from around the state.

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Press Release

Wednesday, April 11, 2018 - 12:29pm
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the groundbreaking of the Frontier Town Campground, Equestrian and Day Use Area and a new brewing facility for Paradox Brewery. The new, public campground facility, located at the site of the former Frontier Town theme park in the town of North Hudson, is a signature project of the Governor's "Gateway to the Adirondacks" tourism hub and part of the State's Adventure NY initiative to enhance access to state lands and connect New Yorkers to nature and the outdoors. An estimated $25 million in public/private resources have been committed to the project to date.    "This development will create a unique, world-class campground for New Yorkers and visitors alike to enjoy," Governor Cuomo said. "This Gateway to the Adirondacks will serve as a central point for all of the area's recreations, significantly benefitting the local community and the region's tourism industry."  The plans for the campground were conceived in the Upper Hudson Recreation Hub Master Plan to establish a Gateway to the Adirondacks that will link local and regional outdoor recreation experiences in the Adirondack Park, bolster tourism, and strengthen the North Country's regional economy.  Read the full press release here. 
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Press Release

Tuesday, April 10, 2018 - 4:42pm
Partnership with The Culinary Institute of America to Develop Curriculum, Certification Programs, Workshops, Special Events and Tastings At an event with The Culinary Institute of America, Empire State Development (ESD) President, CEO, & Commissioner Howard Zemsky welcomed premier Japanese sake brewery Asahi Shuzo to the Hudson Valley.  A landmark partnership between Asahi Shuzo and The Culinary Institute of America, the world’s premier culinary college, will establish New York’s largest sake brewery and the first sake brewery in the Hudson Valley. As part of the collaboration, Asahi Shuzo will build its first U.S. brewery in Hyde Park, less than a mile from The CIA campus.  Construction on the new brewery - located at the corner of Route 9 and St. Andrews Road - is anticipated to commence in spring 2018, with a scheduled opening in early 2019. At full capacity, the brewery will produce 332,640 gallons of sake a year. “New York’s thriving craft beverage community is an engine for job creation, tourism, and regional economic growth,” said ESD President, CEO and Commissioner Howard Zemsky. “Asahi Shuzo’s expansion into the Hudson Valley builds on New York’s national and international leadership in this industry.” Asahi Shuzo International Co., Ltd., maker of world-renowned DASSAI premium Junmai Daiginjo sake, will collaborate with The CIA to further the education and awareness of sake within the United States. The CIA—with the support of Asahi Shuzo—will develop curriculum, certification programs, workshops, and special events and tastings.  “Asahi Shuzo International Company is a leader in its field, carefully combining both tradition and cutting-edge technology to craft its premium quality beverage,” said CIA President Dr. Tim Ryan. “We are honored that they chose to build their first U.S. operation in The CIA’s backyard, and look forward to a long and fruitful relationship.” “When looking for a site to build our first U.S. brewery, we knew we wanted to differentiate ourselves from other sake brewers,” says Asahi Shuzo Chairman Hiroshi Sakurai. “The proximity to The CIA, located in the heart of the Hudson Valley, is an ideal fit. We are excited to cultivate this new relationship.” To encourage Asahi Shuzo’s growth in New York, Empire State Development offered the Japan-based brewery up to $588,235 in performance-based tax credits through the Excelsior Jobs Program.  Asahi Shuzo will invest more than $28 million in the facility and create 32 new jobs. The CIA and Asahi Shuzo will also seek research and development opportunities to further identify ways in which sake and the by-product from the sake-making process can be used to expand food flavors and culinary techniques, along with the potential for new lines of sake-based products. New York State is ranked third in the United States for highest foreign direct investment, with 474,000 New York jobs supported by foreign investments. Japan is the third largest foreign investor into the United States.   Under Governor Cuomo's leadership, New York State continues to implement legislative and policy changes to capitalize on the soaring consumer demand for locally produced craft beverages and to make it easier to open and run a craft manufacturing business. These improvements include lowering taxes and fees, providing support for research, creating new licenses for farm breweries and cideries, rolling back restrictive regulations, cutting the time it takes to obtain a license in half and overhauling the state's antiquated Alcoholic Beverage Control law. These reforms have led to a 156 percent increase in the number of new farm craft manufacturers since the Governors' first Wine, Beer and Spirits Summit in 2012, growing from 282 licenses in 2012 to 721 today, including 208 farm breweries and 42 farm cideries. About Empire State Development Empire State Development (ESD) is New York’s chief economic development agency (www.esd.ny.gov). The mission of ESD is to promote a vigorous and growing economy, encourage the creation of new job and economic opportunities, increase revenues to the State and its municipalities, and achieve stable and diversified local economies. Through the use of loans, grants, tax credits and other forms of financial assistance, ESD strives to enhance private business investment and growth to spur job creation and support prosperous communities across New York State. ESD is also the primary administrative agency overseeing Governor Cuomo’s Regional Economic Development Councils and the marketing of “I LOVE NEW YORK,” the State’s iconic tourism brand. For more information on Regional Councils and Empire State Development, visit www.regionalcouncils.ny.gov  and www.esd.ny.gov.       Contact: Amy Varghese (ESD) | amy.varghese@esd.ny.gov | (212) 803-3740 ESD Press Office | pressoffice@esd.ny.gov | (800) 260-7313
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Press Release

Tuesday, April 10, 2018 - 2:19pm
Empire State Development (ESD) announced today that Larkin Express Logistics has opened the doors on its full-scale, freight brokerage that offers transportation and logistics services across a wide range of industries in North America. Larkin Express connects shippers with a network of pre-qualified local, regional, and national carriers on a daily basis. The company is investing nearly $700,000 at its 135 Delaware Avenue location and will create up to 53 new full-time jobs over the next five years. "As a life-long Western New Yorker, it has been remarkable to see our region's resurgence in recent years," said Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul. "New businesses are investing in the Buffalo Niagara region thanks to our state's focus on a comprehensive economic and workforce development strategy. The announcement from Larkin Express Logistics is another sign that the Western New York region continues to move forward."​​​ In order to encourage Larkin Express Logistics to locate in Buffalo, Empire State Development has offered up to $300,000 in performance-based Excelsior Jobs Program tax credits, which are tied to job creation commitments. Empire State Development President, CEO & Commissioner Howard Zemsky said, “In deciding to launch its logistics business in Buffalo, Larkin Express is the latest company choosing to locate and create jobs in Western New York, where it will join a growing number of businesses that benefit from the region’s talented workforce, affordable real estate, and supportive business community.” Don De Laria, president of Larkin Express Logistics, said, “Our competitive advantage is the people we hire, which was a major draw to the Buffalo Niagara region. Our research prior to choosing Buffalo spoke highly of the local work ethic. Now we’re seeing it firsthand as we ramp up hiring. Empire State Development, Invest Buffalo Niagara and the entire business community in Buffalo have been so welcoming and helpful, it’s truly incredible.There’s a reason Buffalo is called the City of Good Neighbors.” Larkin Express Logistics connects shippers to temperature controlled, flatbed, heavy-haul and other vehicles ideally equipped to get the job done efficiently. Its location in Buffalo is ideal for facilitating cross border transport needs. Larkin Express Logistics is currently hiring business development, account management, and carrier operations staff. Invest Buffalo Niagara, the nonprofit, privately-funded economic development organization representing the eight counties of Western New York, provided services and project management to help facilitate Larkin Express Logistics locating in Buffalo. “Every day our organization is pitching Buffalo Niagara as a cost-effective region to start a business, where you can access hardworking talent and tap into the many local resources available,” said Thomas Kucharski, president and CEO of InBN. “Today’s announcement by Larkin Express Logistics yet again validates that argument. We are very excited to welcome the team to Buffalo.” “New businesses continue to invest in Western New York because they witness firsthand the strong network of economic and business-minded leaders and policies our region, and our state, have to offer,” said Senator Tim Kennedy. “I’m proud to welcome Larkin Express Logistics to Buffalo, and look forward to the jobs that will be created as they put down roots and grow in our community.” Assemblyman Sean Ryan said, “Thanks to an extremely talented workforce, The Buffalo Niagara region has become a destination for new and growing businesses.  I'm thrilled to see Larkin Express Logistics choose to call Western New York home.  Their presence will only help to strengthen our rapidly growing economy, and I look forward to seeing their business grow.” “I’m pleased to welcome Larkin Express Logistics to downtown Buffalo. The company’s $700,000 investment in its headquarters and goal of adding 53 good-paying, full-time jobs is great news for our city and our residents. Larkin Express Logistics will be adding to the over $6.2 billion in investment we’ve seen since 2012,” Mayor Byron W. Brown said. About Empire State Development Empire State Development is New York’s chief economic development agency. The mission of Empire State Development is to promote a vigorous and growing economy, encourage the creation of new job and economic opportunities, increase revenues to the State and its municipalities, and achieve stable and diversified local economies. Through the use of loans, grants, tax credits, and other forms of financial assistance, Empire State Development strives to enhance private business investment and growth to spur job creation and support prosperous communities across New York State. Empire State Development is also the primary administrative agency overseeing Governor Cuomo’s Regional Economic Development Councils and the marketing of “I Love NY,” the State’s iconic tourism brand. For more information on Regional Councils and Empire State Development, please visit www.regionalcouncils.ny.gov and www.esd.ny.gov.     Contact: Pamm Lent (ESD) |pamm.lent@esd.ny.gov | (716) 846-8309 | (800) 260-7313 ESD Press Office | pressoffice@esd.ny.gov | (800) 260-7313
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Press Release

Tuesday, April 10, 2018 - 12:56pm
Empire State Development today announced that applications are now available for the New York Fund for Innovation in Research and Scientific Talent (NY FIRST), a $15 million medical school capital funding program to encourage recruitment and retention of exceptional life science researchers focused on translational research by supporting the establishment or upgrading of their laboratories. “As New York rapidly emerges as a world-class hub for life sciences research and commercialization, it is vital that we continue to attract world-class talent to lead the way,” said ESD President, CEO, and Commissioner Howard Zemsky. “NY FIRST will help ensure that New York’s medical institutions remain state-of-the-art, competitive spaces where top-notch researchers can do this groundbreaking work.” NY FIRST makes a maximum grant of $1 million to eligible institutional applicants to modernize, renovate and upgrade laboratory facilities to attract world-class scientists to medical schools in New York State. Program grant awards will be made through an annual competitive grant solicitation, conducted for up to three years or until funds are fully committed.  Grantees are required to provide $2 in matching funds for every $1 of NY FIRST program assistance. The scientific talent recruited or retained to head these new or upgraded labs must demonstrate a history of translational research and actively pursuing research on an innovative solution for an unmet clinical need. The researcher is required to demonstrate a clear path to commercialization with the potential for significant life sciences economic development benefits in New York State, such as increased patent applications and patentable discoveries; increased recruitment/retention of medical school faculty focused on translational research; or an increase in the number of life sciences jobs created or retained.  The NY FIRST application may be downloaded here. This round of applications is due Friday, June 15, 2018. In the FY 2018 budget, New York State enacted a $620 million initiative to spur the growth of a world-class life science research cluster in New York, as well as expand the state’s ability to commercialize this research and grow the economy. This multi-faceted initiative includes $100 million to expand the Excelsior Jobs Program Tax Credit to the life sciences industry, $100 million for a life sciences research and development refundable tax credit program, and $320 million in other forms of investment including state capital grants to support the development of wet-lab and innovation space, operating support and investment capital for early stage life science companies that leverages an additional match of at least $100 million from private sector. The Life Science sector encompasses the fields of biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, biomedical technologies, life systems technologies, and includes organizations and institutions that devote the majority of their efforts to the various stages of research, development, technology transfer and commercialization. Every day, firms in this sector are developing new medical and pharmaceutical breakthroughs that have the potential to save lives, whether through new therapies or the early detection of diseases like autism and cancer. These firms are also making significant advancements in the realms of agriculture and environmental biotechnologies, helping create a cleaner and more sustainable future. By strengthening incentives, investing in the facilities, and improving access to talent and expertise, New York will significantly increase its share of industry-funded research and development, support the commercialization of existing academic research, and usher in the next generation of advanced technologies. Beyond the advancements in science, this initiative will position New York as a magnet for emerging manufacturing based enterprises, bolstering regional economies and creating thousands of jobs. About Empire State Development Empire State Development (ESD) is New York’s chief economic development agency (www.esd.ny.gov). The mission of ESD is to promote a vigorous and growing economy, encourage the creation of new job and economic opportunities, increase revenues to the State and its municipalities, and achieve stable and diversified local economies. Through the use of loans, grants, tax credits and other forms of financial assistance, ESD strives to enhance private business investment and growth to spur job creation and support prosperous communities across New York State. ESD is also the primary administrative agency overseeing Governor Cuomo’s Regional Economic Development Councils and the marketing of “I LOVE NEW YORK,” the State’s iconic tourism brand. For more information on Regional Councils and Empire State Development, visit www.regionalcouncils.ny.gov  and www.esd.ny.gov.     Contact: Amy Varghese (ESD) | amy.varghese@esd.ny.gov | (212) 803-3740 ESD Press Office | pressoffice@esd.ny.gov | (800) 260-7313
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Board Meeting

Tuesday, April 10, 2018 - 10:00am
With videoconferencing to: SUNY System Administration 353 Broadway Albany, NY 12246
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Press Release

Monday, April 9, 2018 - 4:51pm
Investment in Established Company Complements "Southern Tier Soaring" - The Region's Comprehensive Strategy to Revitalize Communities and Grow the Economy Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that truck industry equipment manufacturer Air-Flo Manufacturing will expand its operations in Chemung County. The storied company will purchase the 310,000 square-foot former Belden Connectivity facility on Main Street North in Horseheads, NY where it will consolidate its truck body and accessory manufacturing operations and install new production lines. As a result, the company will create 40 new jobs; 200 full-time positions will also be retained thanks to the support from the state. The expansion project is expected to be completed fall of 2018. "Air-Flo's continued success and expansion will help to boost economic growth in Chemung County and across the Southern Tier," Governor Cuomo said. "We will continue to invest in companies that are committed to creating jobs and growing their business in New York." ESD is supporting Air-Flo's growth by providing up to $900,000 in incentives. Up to $475,000 of that will come through a Southern Tier Regional Council Economic Development Grant. Up to $425,000 will be provided through the Excelsior Tax Credit Program and is tied to job creation commitments. Chemung County is also providing incentives for the expansion plan. The total project cost is $ 3 million. Read the full press release here. 
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Blog Post

Monday, April 9, 2018 - 3:47pm
It might seem unusual for a California drone startup initially targeting West Coast vineyards to find fertile entrepreneurial ground across the country in Central New York – but then there’s nothing typical about GENIUS NY, the yearlong business accelerator with a million-dollar grand prize that is cultivating a regional ecosystem devoted to unmanned aerial systems (UAS). For the California-based founders of AutoModality, grand prize winners in last year’s inaugural GENIUS NY competition, the experience sent the company in a different direction - to Syracuse, where they and other GENIUS NY alums are staying to build their businesses. Based at CenterState CEO’s Tech Garden accelerator in Syracuse, GENIUS NY describes itself as one of the world’s largest drone-focused business competitions, offering a total of $2.75 million to six finalists who live and work in the region’s UAS corridor. This year’s Round Two winners will be announced on April 9 in a ceremony at the Marriott Downtown Syracuse. “When we started this program, we really didn’t expect a company from Northern California to come to Central New York and be excited about building a business in Syracuse,” said GENIUS NY director Jon Parry, interviewed on Ian Smith’s “Commercial Drones FM” podcast last summer. “But what we found was, due to the nature of the investments [pledged to the winners] we got much more experienced teams than we were originally expecting.” The other finalists from the inaugural competition include Ascent AeroSystems (second place), OmniMesh (third place), Akrobotix (runner-up), EZ3D (runner-up) and SkyOp (runner-up), a drone pilot training company offering classes to high school STEM and community college students. OmniMesh, Akrobotix and SkyOp all originated in New York State.
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Press Release

Thursday, April 5, 2018 - 3:02pm
Brewery Planning May 15 "Brew York" Release, Photos Available Here Supports "Southern Tier Soaring" - the Region's Strategic Plan to Revitalize Communities and Grow Regional Economies  Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced Ithaca Beer Co. will launch the state's first commercially produced beer made with predominantly New York-grown ingredients to be available year-round and statewide. Brew York is a pale ale that uses nearly 70 percent New York-grown barley and 100 percent New York hops. Produced with ingredients from local farms, Brew York will be available in both bottles and draft starting May 15. Ithaca Beer's investment in this new product line supports Southern Tier Soaring, the region's strategic plan to revitalize communities and grow regional economies. "New York continues to set the bar for new and innovative craft beverages, and by encouraging collaboration with local farms and the use of Empire State-grown crops, we have created a win-win situation," Governor Cuomo said. "Ithaca Beer's new offering is a testament to the growth of this exciting industry that also boosts our agricultural and tourism economies in the Southern Tier and across New York." Read the full press release here. 
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Press Release

Tuesday, April 3, 2018 - 3:29pm
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that Specialty Quality Packaging, a leading manufacturer of paper and packaging products for the food industry, will invest nearly $8 million to expand its manufacturing plant in the Glenville Business and Technology Park in Schenectady County. The company will create 45 new positions as part of the expansion project. To help secure this investment for New York State, Empire State Development will provide up to $900,000 in performance-based Excelsior Jobs Program tax credits, and Schenectady County Metroplex Development Authority is providing local assistance. "Special Quality Product's further job creation is supporting the continual progress we've made in Schenectady County," Governor Cuomo said. "We will continue to support the growth of this state's business sector and the creation of quality, good-paying jobs across New York." ESD President, CEO and Commissioner Howard Zemsky said, "This project is a result of our collaboration with Metroplex and local partners to encourage new development in the Glenville Business and Technology Park. By working with local communities, the State is fostering sustainable job growth and strengthening our regional economies." Read the full press release here. 
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