The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

September 20, 2013

Des Moines company seeks state funds to relocate

DAVID PITT
Associated Press

---- — DES MOINES, Iowa — A company that provides warehouses, freight management, and transportation services is seeking help from the state to move its corporate headquarters from Des Moines to a suburb on the city’s west edge, state economic development documents show.

Jacobson Companies is seeking a $250,000 loan from the state, and documents indicate the city of Clive is willing to provide $60,000. The project cost is estimated at $2.3 million, which includes rent for three years and money to buy computer hardware, software, furniture and fixtures.

The Iowa Economic Development Authority will consider the company’s application for state funds along with several other economic development projects Friday.

The company wants to move in the fourth quarter of this year “to gain better access for employees and customers,” IEDA documents indicate.

It can be a delicate issue when a company wants to relocate from one city to another and seeks state assistance for the move.

Sen. Matt McCoy, a Des Moines Democrat, generally opposes the state providing money to a company to move within the same county or a bordering county. However, he understands business needs sometimes dictate relocation.

“For example, the current space is inadequate or costly to rehabilitate or maintain,” he said.

Often economic development officials must consider whether the company could leave the region or the state completely.

The company also is considering Chicago locations, documents said.

Jacobson plans to keep its transportation facility in Des Moines and is looking for a new location for its corporate headquarters, said IEDA Director Debi Durham.

The IEDA works to make sure any differences are worked out in the case of a company moving operations from one city to another, she said.

In this case, the Greater Des Moines Partnership, which coordinates economic development around the Des Moines area, worked with the cities of Des Moines and Clive to iron out differences.

A spokeswoman for the city of Des Moines did not immediately return messages.

Jacobson was founded in Des Moines in a 96,000-square-foot warehouse in 1968. It now manages 32 million square feet of warehouse space in 26 states. It provides a variety of services to food, beverage, electronics, hardware, tools and toy industries, among others.