Rochester, NY – Empire State Development today announced that Diamond Packaging has been awarded $700,000 in Round 1 of the Upstate Regional Blueprint Funding. Diamond will retain 90 existing jobs and create 100 new jobs with this investment. The announcement of $17.5 million in Round I of Upstate Regional Blueprint funding was made today by Governor David A. Paterson. More than $1 million in funding was awarded to the Finger Lakes Region.
The Upstate Regional Blueprint Fund was designed to finance business investment, infrastructure upgrades and downtown redevelopment that will advance New York’s economic vitality. The $120 million Fund, announced by Governor David A. Paterson in May, supports projects that help provide a framework for future growth in regions with stymied development.
Diamond Packaging is a high-end printing and packaging company that will invest in a new multi-million dollar printing press to service new and existing customers. This investment will ensure that the company retains its largest customers, as well as assist in attracting new business. In addition to the Blueprint funds, Diamond will be financing the acquisition with SBA 504 funds approved through the Monroe County Industrial Development Corporation, bank financing, and cash equity.
“The Upstate Regional Blueprint Fund is another brick in our foundation as we strive towards sustainable growth of our Upstate New York communities,” said Empire State Development Chairman and CEO designate, Dennis M. Mullen. “This strategic investment directly responds to the unique challenges we face in the Upstate economy. Not only will the Blueprint Fund help the small businesses and developing communities that need it most, but it will have a resounding effect on all of New York by creating and retaining jobs, spurring economic development and building stronger urban cores that will position our economy for future generations.”
“Blueprint Fund announcements like this mean that a dynamic and innovative company like Diamond Packaging, can continue to create jobs and attract business for the Finger Lakes region,” said ESD Regional Director Robert McNary. “We are excited about this project and anticipate assisting more businesses with future rounds of Upstate Regional Blueprint funding.” Page 2 of 2 Empire State Development
“Packaging is a very capital intensive business. Our customers are continually demanding new technology, faster turn-around, increased service and greater flexibility and capability,” said Diamond Packaging CEO, Karla Fichter. “Investing in new technology continues a long standing tradition at Diamond and allows us to satisfy the demands of our customers and grow the Company. Empire State Development, the Monroe County Industrial Development Corporation and our lender all play large roles in our ability to maintain and improve our competitive position in the industry.”
“This project entails the acquisition of a multi-million dollar, state-of-the-art eight color printing press with the latest in coating capabilities,” said Diamond Packaging President, Kirsten Werner. “In addition to helping retain and solidify our customer base, the press provides for increased decorative capabilities and capacity, allowing us to penetrate additional markets, generate new customers, and grow revenues and employment.”
The Blueprint Fund invests in projects that advance local development and small businesses, including providing financing for the purchase of equipment, real estate or other needs. Eligible applicants include municipalities, businesses, academic institutions and non-profits. Awards range from $100,000 to $5 million. The program will give a preference to requests for loans, with principal repayments able to be recycled for future projects.
To ensure that each project meets the specific needs of its region, all applications undergo a competitive review process by ESD’s Regional and Central Offices. Requests for business investment assistance are reviewed on a rolling basis, whereas requests for infrastructure and downtown redevelopment assistance follow a quarterly calendar.
This is the first of four rounds of funding to be awarded; applicants who were not awarded funding in this round may be considered for future rounds. More information about the Upstate Regional Blueprint Funds and application forms can be found at www.nylovesbiz.com. Applications for Round 2 funding will be accepted until October 15, 2009.
Watch news coverage of the press conference.
About Diamond Packaging
Founded in 1911, Diamond Packaging is a WBENC-certified woman-owned business specializing in developing innovative and sustainable packaging solutions. Utilizing state of-the-art technologies, Diamond designs and manufactures paperboard and plastic folding cartons, and provides comprehensive contract packaging services for the personal care (cosmetics & skin care, fragrance, hair care), health care, pharmaceutical, nutraceutical, and food and confectionery industries. Its client portfolio includes Bausch & Lomb, Beiersdorf, Coty, Elizabeth Arden, Estée Lauder, Godiva Chocolatier, Johnson & Johnson, L’Oreal, and Procter & Gamble. As part of the Global Packaging Alliance® (GPA), Diamond and its alliance members offer packaging solutions to companies operating on an international scale. Customers receive responsive, localized service, award-winning creative designs, identical product specifications and consistent brand recognition, resulting in unparalleled worldwide packaging support. For more information about Diamond Packaging, contact Dennis Bacchetta at (585) 334-8030 x229 or visit the website at www.diamondpackaging.com. For more information about Diamond’s greenbox initiative, visit the sustainability microsite at www.diamondpackaging.com/green.