Bob Evans Farms is ready to move into its new headquarters in New Albany within the next two years.
The company announced in March that it would move its corporate headquarters to New Albany from south Columbus, where it has been located since 1968, said Joe Eulberg, executive vice president of human resources for the company.
Bob Evans Farms considered other locations in Columbus and Texas. But New Albany seemed to be the right fit and also provided an incentive package “that made sense,” Eulberg said.
Eulberg said the company was looking for 26 acres to purchase and ended up buying 40, which will give it room to expand in New Albany. The property is north of state Route 161, just west of Beech Road in Franklin County.
Community development director Jennifer Chrysler said the company is expected to construct a 165,000-square-foot building that will have 360 employees within the first four years of operations. The company’s investment in the project is estimated at $33.5 million.
Council’s legislative report said, “initially, the company will create 360 jobs in New Albany with an annual payroll of $23.4 million. Within four years, the company will ramp up to 510 jobs with an annual payroll of $35 million.
In its financial-incentive package, the company will receive:
- A 15-year, 100-percent tax abatement.
- A 20-percent income-tax credit for five years if it uses environmentally friendly technology on site.
- A 5-percent income-tax credit for five years for health and wellness initiatives.
- A $250,000 income-tax credit, repayable over two years, to help with relocation expenses.
- A $1-million interest-free loan for 10 years from the village’s economic-development fund.
- A 25-percent credit on building inspections and fees if it uses environmentally friendly technology on site.
The incentives are valued at more than $9 million, but over the term of the incentives, the project is anticipated to provide $11.3 million in income-tax revenue for the city.
The New Albany/ Plain school district is expected to receive $3.97 million from income-tax receipts through the revenue-sharing agreement. The city will also be able to use $2.58 million from the income-tax money generated to pay infrastructure debt from improvements to the business campus.
Eulberg said Bob Evans Farms strives to be part of the community in which it is located and the property will serve as a company headquarters and an educational area, which will help explain how the company operates.
“We can tell our story better through our past,” he said.
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