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Business Observer Tuesday, Jun. 22, 2010 9 years ago

Arthrex seeks suitors

A Naples tech manufacturer is looking elsewhere to expand.

Today, Arthrex is based in Naples. But that soon may change unless Collier County comes up with a more competitive package of tax incentives.

Arthrex develops sports medicine products, including devices used for orthopedic surgery, from its 300,000-square-foot facility on Creekside Boulevard. It plans to build a 140,000-square-foot medical device manufacturing facility in the near future — and has made it clear that building in Naples is not a foregone conclusion.

“Economic incentives from other states are in dramatic contrast to what we have been offered from Florida and Collier County,” explained Reinhold Schmieding, president and founder of Arthrex.

Part of the reason is that Collier has agreed to pony up $130 million locally to match a state grant to lure Maine-based non-profit Jackson Laboratories to Collier. The Jackson Labs project also calls for $120 million in private funding to seal the lab deal.

Schmieding is clearly irked.

“Why would we accept substandard treatment after being totally committed to growing our business in Collier County since 1991?” pondered Schmieding in a release.

In the end, it may cost Florida much more than $380 million to achieve their latest “economic development” success.

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