The Chautauqua County Industrial Development Agency is 95 percent sure it will be seeing new business in the former AFA Food building in Ashville.
The CCIDA spent a portion of its board meeting Tuesday discussing German-based saturn petcare inc. It was announced in April that saturn petcare inc's parent company, heristo aktiengesellschaft Germany, was planning to establish a U.S.-based manufacturing facility for pet care products. The Ashville location was named as one of two potential sites of operation for the business, along with a property located in Michigan.
At April's meeting, Bill Daly, administrative director for the CCIDA, said the company anticipates starting out with 25 employees, growing to more than 100 jobs within five years. Additionally, representatives from saturn petcare inc. said they would be putting more than $20 million into the business and property upgrades.
Although Daly predicts being two to three weeks away from finding out whether saturn petcare inc will definitely be located in Ashville, the CCIDA has moved on with a State Environmental Quality Review act, as well as authorizing a straight lease transaction.
"If I could give you a number, I would say (the chances of saturn petcare inc locating in Ashville is) 95 percent," Daly said. "But that's not 100 percent. ... Our policy has always been we don't announce it until it's pretty good or we have to make it a public statement, which is required by law. So, I would say that we feel very good about it. The company is a great company."
Daly said all indications that saturn petcare inc will be purchasing the former AFA Food building are very good. He said he expects a formal announcement to be coming in the next several weeks.
"I would say that we feel very good about it."
"In our world, we have to (keep moving forward)," Daly said. "Once it occurs, we will be ready. So, that's what we do with all our resolutions."
Also at Tuesday's meeting, the board authorized a preliminary resolution for Gren Ventures, LLC in Jamestown. According to Daly, Gren bought nearly 2 acres of land from Bush Industries, also in Jamestown, in order to construct a new building.
"They are going to be expanding their bottle recycling, and they will bring more product into the old facility," Daly said. "And, they're going to be hiring some new people. So, that's great, because that is a 2-acre parcel that was never developed for all these years, and he's actually purchased it and will develop it and have some more employees."
The board also discussed an Al Tech loan for Rae Foods Inc., which is purchasing the Fireman Exempt building in Westfield in order to open a pierogi business.
"Everybody has just worked so hard to get this done," Daly said. "I can't tell you what a wonderful deal that will be in the village and the town of Westfield."
The business plans to employ between 13 and 15 people for the first year, growing to more than 50 employees by its fifth year of operation. Positions will include production, maintenance, sanitation, quality assurance and office staff.