Partnership Creates Major Business Incubator & Research Institute at Experimental Station

State of Delaware, DuPont and University of Delaware partner to form Delaware Innovation Space, Inc.
 
WILMINGTON, Del. – Governor John Carney on Monday announced the creation of the Delaware Innovation Space, Inc. – a nonprofit public-private partnership established by the State of Delaware, DuPont, and the University of Delaware that will catalyze the entrepreneurial growth of new science-based businesses and ventures in Delaware.

The Delaware Innovation Space will be headquartered at the DuPont Experimental Station research campus in Alapocas.

Formed as a separate nonprofit organization and legal entity and governed by an independent board, the Delaware Innovation Space will operate as an incubator to accelerate and drive new business growth, and as a research institute for the advancement of science in collaboration with the diverse scientific talent base in Delaware.

Each founding partner will contribute assets in support of the formation of the nonprofit, and two members to its initial Board of Directors.

“Delaware’s economy remains in transition, and we should do everything we can to support innovation, and partner with the private sector to drive business and job growth,” said Governor Carney. “DuPont and the University of Delaware have long histories of innovation, and remain crucially important to the future of our economy and our state. This partnership will draw upon the resources of those institutions to help science-based businesses grow here in Delaware, and connect Delaware’s students to the work of our most talented innovators.”

“The Innovation Space at the Experimental Station shows that DuPont, the state and the University of Delaware are committed to creating a nurturing environment for business to grow and thrive,” said U.S. Senator Tom Carper. “Delaware may be small, but we are nimble. We have all levels of government partnering with the private and non-profit sectors to find ways to make Delaware a more attractive place to do business. The Innovation Space is another example of a great idea that came from the power of partnerships.”

“This building will provide Delaware with what startups in our region need the most, high quality and market rate lab space,” said U.S. Senator Chris Coons. “In the Senate, I have worked hard to give science based early stage companies tools they need, but ultimately Delaware needs more lab space like this in order to help local companies grow and for us to attract other companies from outside of our state. I am thrilled to see this building come to fruition, and excited to see what technologies emerge from this site.”

“It’s exciting to see what we can accomplish when we come together, and I’m grateful for the University of Delaware and DuPont for their continued support of a brighter future for Delaware,” said Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester. “Not only will this partnership promote economic growth and attract new businesses, it will also provide students with exciting opportunities to get hands on research experience in growing fields.”

“DuPont’s vision for the Experimental Station is to harness the power of collaboration to drive innovation,” said Doug Muzyka, DuPont Senior Vice President and Chief Science and Technology Officer. “The Delaware Innovation Space will accelerate new business growth and give entrepreneurs, scientific leaders, and businesses access to best-in-class talent, resources and the culture of the Experimental Station.”

“UD fosters a strong, productive and longstanding relationship with the State and DuPont that advances scientific inquiry, strengthens our economy and improves the lives of Delawareans,” said Dennis Assanis, University of Delaware President. “The Delaware Innovation Space represents a new and exciting chapter in that partnership, one that will benefit our community for many more decades ahead.”

The partnership of the State of Delaware, DuPont and the University of Delaware at the Experimental Station not only will fuel growth of science-based businesses; it will spur job creation, creativity, and develop, attract and retain science talent in Delaware.

The Delaware Innovation Space will focus on key Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) areas that align with strengths both DuPont and UD bring to the venture. They include industrial biotechnology, renewable energy, advanced materials, chemical ingredients, nutrition and healthcare to help strengthen Delaware’s presence as a leader in those areas.

It also will provide education to entrepreneurs and startups, help accelerate the formation of new businesses, and connect Delaware’s students with the work of innovators and entrepreneurs.

The Delaware Innovation Space will be located in a dedicated building (E500) at the Experimental Station. It will include approximately 100,000 square feet of innovative laboratory and office space comprised of a mix of large shared lab spaces and open office areas in addition to private laboratory and office suites.  Delaware Innovation clientele also will have access to other common spaces and leveraged capabilities at the Experimental Station.

Partner contributions include:
State of Delaware:

  • $5 million in startup funding support over 3 years from the Delaware Strategic Fund
  • Key support from public stakeholders in attracting companies to Delaware

DuPont:

  • $1.25 million in startup funding
  • Modern laboratory and office building at the Experimental Station, valued at approximately $15 million today
  • Laboratory equipment valued at up to $2 million
  • Nonprofit set-up costs

University of Delaware:

  • $1.5 million in startup funding over three years
  • Student internships
  • On-site workshops and seminars led by UD faculty members
  • Grant writing support

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Governor Carney Announces Departure of DEDO Director Bernice Whaley

Whaley is joining St. Andrew’s School as Director of Development

WILMINGTON, Del. – Governor John Carney on Tuesday announced that Dr. Bernice Whaley, the Director of the Delaware Economic Development Office, is leaving DEDO to become Director of Development at St. Andrew’s School in Middletown.

Dr. Whaley has served as DEDO Director since June 2015. She had been deputy director of DEDO since 2009.

“Bernice has been a source of steady leadership at the Delaware Economic Development Office,” said Governor Carney. “In recent months, she has led DEDO while serving on the Economic Development Working Group, helping us craft a new economic development strategy to invest in Delaware’s entrepreneurs, attract good-paying jobs, and grow our economy. I am thankful for Bernice’s service, and wish her the best of luck going forward.”

Cerron Cade, the deputy director of DEDO, will serve as acting director until a permanent director is selected.

“For over eight years, I’ve had the pleasure of serving the people of Delaware – first as deputy director and then as DEDO’s director. I am grateful to have been a part of this amazing team and honored to have the opportunity to lead it for the past two years,” said Dr. Whaley. “We’ve helped enhance the economic vitality of the state by creating and retaining thousands of jobs, attracting businesses and visitors from across the globe, implementing new initiatives to support workforce development and bolster our community of small businesses and entrepreneurs. I’m looking forward to continuing to serve the people of Delaware and students from around the world in a different, but equally rewarding, role with St. Andrew’s School.”

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Delaware Economic Development Working Group Recommends Plan for Public-Private Partnership

Governor Carney created the working group with Executive Order #1

WILMINGTON, Del. – The Delaware Economic Development Working Group submitted its report to Governor John Carney on Friday, recommending a plan to implement a public-private partnership – the Delaware Prosperity Partnership – that would restructure Delaware’s economic development efforts.

The nonprofit partnership, as recommended by the working group, would leverage private resources to enhance business recruitment, promote entrepreneurship and innovation, support workforce development and provide market analysis on Delaware’s economy.

On January 18, his first full day in office, Governor Carney signed Executive Order #1, creating the working group to recommend a plan for implementing a public-private partnership to improve Delaware’s system of economic development.

Governor Carney is reviewing the working group’s recommendations.

“Delaware’s economy continues to undergo substantial change, and we should do everything we can to ensure Delaware is competing for the good-paying jobs of the future, preparing our workforce for those jobs, supporting our entrepreneurs and promoting innovation,” said Governor Carney. “It makes sense to ask the business sector to partner in those efforts. Thank you to the members of the working group for their attention to this important issue. I am committed to working with the General Assembly as we explore a path forward.”

A new partnership, as recommended Friday by the working group, would be designed as a forward-looking entity to anticipate economic trends – with success of the initiative defined by a set of metrics to include new job creation, higher wages, expanding Delaware’s high-quality talent base, growing Delaware’s tax base, and new business formation.

The working group’s plan does not call for a full replacement of the Delaware Economic Development Office. Under the group’s recommendations, DEDO would remain responsible for administering the Delaware Strategic Fund, Delaware’s Tourism office, business development initiatives and various additional functions.

The Delaware Prosperity Partnership would be led by a Chief Executive Officer and governed by a 15-member board with members from the public and private sectors. Friday’s report anticipates a total annual budget of $2.5 million – with the private sector funding a target of 40-60 percent of the nonprofit’s operational costs.

“The members of the working group were honored to serve the Governor on this project and brought a lot of energy, commitment and great thinking to the process of developing the final report,” said Mark Brainard, President of Delaware Technical Community College, and co-chair of the Economic Development Working Group. “The literature shows that states that want to bring additional resources and talent to their economic development initiatives in the future utilize public-private partnerships as a mechanism for generating these additional resources and this proposed model is a very solid start for the Governor’s team and the General Assembly to build upon during the weeks and months ahead.”

“I want to thank all the working group members for their active and thoughtful participation,” said Rod Ward, President of Corporation Service Company, and co-chair of the Economic Development Working Group. “Our report outlines a wonderful opportunity for the business community to work more closely with the state on economic development through a public-private partnership. It can be a game changer for economic growth.”

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Del Monte Fresh Produce N.A., Inc. Distribution Center Coming to Newark

DEDO Logo

 

New Castle, Del. – Del Monte Fresh Produce N.A., Inc. is expected to expand its extensive United States’ logistics network upon the closing set for May 20, 2017 for the site of the former AstroPower building, currently owned by Christina School District, located at 300 Executive Drive, Pencader Industrial Park in New Castle with assistance provided by the Delaware Strategic Fund. Last week the Council on Development Finance approved the recommendation for a $259,000 performance grant to create approximately 30 jobs for the site of Del Monte Fresh Produce’s newest and most advanced distribution center, and a three percent (3%) match up to $654,000 for qualified capital expenditures.

Del Monte Fresh Produce will invest approximately $22 million in its new facility and expansion into the Delaware community. “We’re glad that Del Monte Fresh Produce® chose Delaware as the strategic location to expand its operations,” Governor John Carney said. “We’re very much looking forward to seeing the former site of AstroPower repurposed and come alive again, bringing with it new jobs to our state.” “We’re excited to commence our operation in the state of Delaware and tap into the workforce of the most populous county in the state with close proximity to the University of Delaware,” said Paul Rice, Senior Vice President, N.A. Operations. “Delaware is not only an ideal location for our Company to further develop our robust Northeastern operations, but will also give us the ability to provide jobs and growth to the surrounding community.”

“The Christina School District is very pleased that DelMonte Fresh Produce Company will be utilizing the Building at 300 Executive Drive in the Pencader Corporate Center as a manufacturing facility,” said Robert Silber, Christina School District Chief Financial Officer. “This sale will mean a return of this property to the tax rolls, and additional jobs for our community, both of which are positive aspects of Del Monte Fresh Produce’s purchase of the building.”

The new 178,000 sq. ft. distribution center in Pencader Industrial Park will add a key distribution point in the Company’s growing logistics network in North America and especially in the Northeast. The state-of-the-art facility will have an extensive infrastructure for the cutting and production of fresh fruit, vegetables and other food products. When completed the distribution center will, among other things, have a fresh cut fruit, protein salad, and commissary production area, banana and avocado ripening rooms, refrigerated and dry warehouse space, loading docks, and office space. “We want to express our appreciation to all the partners who came together on this project to bring Del Monte Fresh Produce® to Delaware,” said Delaware Economic Development Office Director Bernice Whaley. “Thanks to the collaborative effort a building which has been on the market for nearly a decade will be revitalized and create new manufacturing jobs in our state with the potential to add more.”

About Del Monte Fresh Produce N.A., Inc.
Del Monte Fresh Produce N.A., Inc. is one of North America’s leading marketers and distributors of high-quality fresh and fresh-cut fruit and vegetables. Del Monte Fresh Produce N.A., Inc. markets its products in North America under the Del Monte® brand (as well as other brands), a symbol of product innovation, quality, freshness and reliability for more than 125 years. Visit www.FreshDelMonte.com.

About the Delaware Economic Development Office
The Delaware Economic Development Office is an executive state agency responsible for attracting new investors and businesses to the state, promoting the expansion of existing industry, assisting small and minority-owned businesses, promoting and developing tourism and creating new and improved employment opportunities for all citizens of the State. Visit dedo.delaware.gov.

CONTACT INFORMATION:

Christina Dirksen, Strategic Communications Manager, DEDO
Christina.Dirksen@delaware.gov ▪ (302) 672-6857

Del Monte Fresh Produce N.A., Inc.
Dionysios (Dennis) Christou, Vice President Marketing dchristou@freshdelmonte.com – (305) 520 8400

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NextFab New Addition to Wilmington’s Creative District

Print Collaborative workspace to expand operations and programs to Wilmington

Wilmington, DE  – NextFab Studio, LLC, d.b.a. NextFab (“NextFab”) will soon expand operations south of Philadelphia and open a makerspace in downtown Wilmington with assistance from a $350,000 Delaware Strategic Fund grant recently approved by the Council on Development Finance.

“Known for our willingness to embrace change and foster growth, Delaware welcomes NextFab’s pioneering business model, bringing with it a focus on entrepreneurship and product development,” Governor Jack Markell said. “The company’s creative approach to making much-needed technological resources and education available, as well as its commitment to reinvigorating American manufacturing, makes NextFab a perfect addition to Wilmington’s downtown Creative District.”

Founded in 2009 by Dr. Evan Malone, NextFab’s mission is to foster personal fulfillment, innovation, and economic development through providing broad-based awareness of, access to, competence with, and commerce enabled by Next-generation digital design and Fabrication technologies and services. Like a gym for exercising your creativity, there are no prerequisites to joining NextFab as a member, and NextFab’s member community includes more than 650 individuals from every conceivable background. NextFab members have direct access to state-of-the-art equipment, software, training, consultants — everything they need to master new tools and techniques, and turn an idea into a product and product into a business. NextFab’s instructors and consultants span an enormous range of disciplines and experience, including engineering, arts, business, and science. NextFab currently operates two facilities in Philadelphia, and plans to open its latest 3,500 square-foot facility in Wilmington’s Creative District in the first half of 2016.

“It has been more than a year since Dr. Carrie Gray of Wilmington Renaissance Corporation (WRC) brought a stakeholder group from Wilmington to visit us in Philadelphia. Since that time, my colleagues and I have made frequent trips to Wilmington, and have been warmly welcomed into the community and inspired by champions of the past, present, and future of the city,” recalled Dr. Malone. “NextFab is honored and humbled that Governor Markell, Director Whaley, and the Council on Development Finance have entrusted to us some of the resources of the taxpayers of Delaware. We look forward to transforming those resources into tools, training, and technology in the hands of the innovators of Wilmington’s creative economy.”
“We are thrilled that NextFab has identified Wilmington’s Creative District as the right location for their expansion,” said Dr. Carrie W. Gray, WRC Managing Director. “NextFab’s makerspace will be the first of its kind in Wilmington and represents an integral next step for the Creative District. Not only will NextFab complement and enhance our existing tech, maker and entrepreneurial community, but it also represents a unique opportunity to create a key intersection between the arts and tech worlds that NextFab fosters so well.”
“We’re excited that NextFab chose to expand here in Delaware,” commented Delaware Economic Development Office Director Bernice Whaley. “In addition to creating jobs, NextFab will directly support our innovative entrepreneurs, as well bolster indirect job growth through its variety of services.”

About NextFab
NextFab Studio, LLC d.b.a. NextFab, is a for-profit social enterprise focused on building diverse collaborative communities empowered by direct access to advanced manufacturing technology, and providing the training, consulting, and startup company incubation services required to turn ideas into products, and products into businesses. NextFab.com
About Creative District Wilmington
Wilmington’s Creative District is a part of a national wave of creative placemaking initiatives that seek to transform urban areas. This community revitalization project encompasses the area bounded by Fourth, Ninth, Market and Washington Streets and is driven by a strong collaboration from a variety of partners: Chris White Community Development Corporation, Christina Cultural Arts Center, City of Wilmington, Interfaith Community Housing of Delaware, Quaker Hill Neighborhood Association and Wilmington Renaissance Corporation. The Creative District is generously supported by Bank of America, Delaware Division of the Arts, Delaware State Housing Authority, Delmarva Power, JPMorgan Chase, Longwood Foundation, TD Bank Foundation, United Way of Delaware and WSFS Bank. CreativeDistrictWilm.com
About Wilmington Renaissance Corporation (WRC)
Founded in 1993, WRC is a privately funded, nonpartisan nonprofit organization. WRC’s mission is to invigorate downtown Wilmington through strategies and projects that stimulate the city’s economy and vitality, solidifying it as a center of educational, cultural and social activity and an exciting place to live, work and visit. Some of WRC’s groundbreaking projects include: establishment of the Downtown Wilmington Business Improvement District; rejuvenation of the LOMA neighborhood; creation of the innovative Delaware College of Art and Design; attraction of a world-class cycling competition; and the implementation of a highly successful four-year public art program. Currently, WRC’s core strategic initiative is facilitating the implementation of the vision for Wilmington’s Creative District (CD) as Wilmington’s creative center, focused on innovative production and consumption, where creative entrepreneurs – artists, musicians, designers and tech innovators – and neighborhood residents thrive and where locally designed goods and original works are made and consumed. BigIdeasWilmington.com
About the Delaware Economic Development Office
The Delaware Economic Development Office is an executive state agency responsible for attracting new investors and businesses to the state, promoting the expansion of existing industry, assisting small and minority-owned businesses, promoting and developing tourism and creating new and improved employment opportunities for all citizens of the State. Visit dedo.delaware.gov.
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Contacts:
Christina Dirksen
Strategic Communications Manager, Delaware Economic Development Office
(302) 672-6857
Christina.Dirksen@delaware.gov

Evan Malone, Ph.D.
President, NextFab
(215) 921-3649 (main)
Evan.Malone@nextfab.com

Barb Bullock
Creative District Wilmington and Wilmington Renaissance Corporation
Director of Development & Communications
302.425.5500, ext. 104
Barb@BigIdeasWilmington.com