Company in Talks with Taylor Corp. for Potential Location, Proposed Project Contingent On Securing JCF Funding from State
Proto Labs is contemplating moving its Plymouth manufacturing facility to Brooklyn Park, contingent on securing funding through Minnesota’s Job Creation Fund (JCF) program.
Maple Plain-based Proto Labs (NYSE: PRLB) manufactures custom prototypes and production parts. The company is working with Brooklyn Park officials to submit an application to the Minnesota Dept. of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) for the funding.
If approved, the funds would be used by Proto Labs to acquire and renovate a 152,000-square-foot building at 8500 Wyoming Ave. N. in Brooklyn Park, according to its application approved by the Brooklyn Park City Council last week. The company is working with Cresa’s Minneapolis office to evaluate that and other potential locations.
A spokesperson for Proto Labs confirmed the company’s JCF funding application and said the proposed project is contingent on securing the incentive financing. He added Proto Labs would have no further comments surrounding the proposed project beyond what was discussed publicly at the Brooklyn Park City Council meeting.
Currently, the two-story, 27-year-old building is owned by Taylor Corp., a family of companies that includes communications, printing and marketing businesses, among others. Taylor Corp. is based out of both North Mankato, MN and Minnetonka, MN and was founded by Glen Taylor, the owner of the Star Tribune newspaper and both of Minnesota’s professional basketball teams, the Timberwolves and the Lynx.
The building came under Taylor Corp.’s ownership in mid-2016, during its acquisition of Staples Print Solutions, said Taylor Corp. Vice President Larry Taylor, and was put up for sale a few months later. It is being marketed by the Twin Cities office of Los Angeles-based CBRE, he said.
The property is currently listed as for sale for $8.36 million and under contract in the CoStar system.
Should Proto Labs secure the JCF funding and proceed with its plans, it would embark on a $10 million renovation and expansion, adding another 50,000 square feet to the structure, according to materials provided to the city of Brooklyn Park. The company proposed to invest more than $3.5 million in equipment for the new facility.
If the project moves forward, the fast-growing digital modeling and prototyping company would move 225 of its workers from its current facility in Plymouth and hire 139 new, full-time employees as well.
Minnesota’s Job Creation Fund provides awards of up to $500,000 and capital investment rebates of up to $500,000 to qualifying employers. The program is administered by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED), which has final say in whether Proto Labs’ application will be successful.
Proto Labs was founded in 1999 by Larry Lukis, according to its website. The company services a wide range of industrial sectors, including medical device makers, electronics, the automotive industry, and aerospace companies. It currently has four manufacturing facilities in the U.S., including the Plymouth site and another in Rosemount, MN. Proto Labs also has locations in Europe and Japan.