Body Central requests incentives to add jobs, move to North Jacksonville
Body Central Corp., a Jacksonville-based fashion retailer, has requested $723,000 in City and state incentives to relocate and expand its headquarters and distribution operations from the Southside to Imeson Industrial Park in North Jacksonville and create 52 permanent full-time equivalent new jobs.
The company proposes to move from Powers Avenue to 1 Imeson Park Blvd.
A resolution was filed this morning and will be introduced Jan. 22 to City Council.
Code-named "Project Jaguar," the deal calls for a Qualified Target Industry Tax Refund of $598,000, with the City's portion not to exceed $119,600, which represents 20 percent of the QTI.
The state Department of Economic Opportunity would provide the remaining 80 percent, or $478,400.
The QTI portion of the package includes a High Impact Sector Bonus of $2,000 per job, an Enterprise Zone Bonus of $3,000 and a Brownfield Area Bonus of $2,500, according to the legislation.
In addition, the City would provide a $125,000 Recapture Enhanced Value grant, which is paid by the City over a five-year period to refund property taxes and investments already paid.
According to the legislative fact sheet, the company anticipates a $15 million investment, which comprises a $5 million leasehold improvement, $8 million for purchases of machinery equipment furniture and fixtures for the distribution center and $2 million to "fixture" the corporate headquarters portion and install information technology infrastructure.
According to a draft of the redevelopment agreement, though, the City is encouraging and promoting a private capital investment of $10 million.
As reported, the company's current distribution and headquarters is in a 179,000-square-foot facility on Powers Avenue, with the warehouse taking up 146,000 square feet of the building.
In a Nov. 5 Daily Record article detailing the company's quarterly conference call, interim CEO Tom Stoltz revealed that the company was in the "final stages" of negotiating a lease on a new distribution center that is targeted to open in the third quarter of this year.
As reported, Stoltz said the company needs a new warehouse to accommodate its growing store network.
Asked at the time by Daily Record contributing writer Mark Basch whether the company considered moving its headquarters out of Jacksonville, Stoltz said then there that were no decisions about the office plans.
The fact sheet states that Georgia has presented the company with a "very lucrative incentive package" which includes assorted job tax credits, sales and tax use exceptions among other incentives, to relocate the company from Jacksonville to an existing facility in a Georgia Opportunity Zone.
The fact sheet states that because the company was founded in Jacksonville, its executive team prefers to remain and expand in Jacksonville.
The proposal would retain 145 permanent jobs and create 52 new jobs with an average salary, exclusive of benefits, of $66,400. The jobs would be created by Dec. 31, 2017, with 12 jobs created this year and 10 more scheduled each year until that date.
The fact sheet says the company operates 258 specialty apparel stores under the Body Central and Body Shop banners in 24 states along with a catalog and e-commerce website, bodyc.com, and employs 846 full-time employees.
It has a market cap value of approximately $156 million, the sheet states.