Search Icon

BOARD ACTION: Economic Development Board Approves Awards to Support the Creation of Jobs

For more information contact:

For more information contact:


Kay Snyder, IDED, 515.725.3150


Economic Development Board Approves Awards to Support the Creation of Up to 250 Jobs


April 21, 2011 (DES MOINES) – The Iowa Economic Development board approved awards to support projects for nearly 250 new jobs planned or proposed in Iowa. The board approved incentives for projects in Osage, Mitchell County, Cedar Rapids, Norwalk, Fort Dodge, Dubuque, Le Mars, Pella, Ames, Marion, Milford and Storm Lake.


“Iowans and communities across the state will benefit from these new jobs,” Governor Branstad said. “We are pleased that companies are choosing to both expand and also make new investment in Iowa, and we will work hard to continue to provide a highly skilled work force and favorable business climate for continued growth.”


An additional 150 jobs are expected to be retained as a result of the awards.


“Today’s awards highlight many of Iowa’s important industries including biosciences, renewable fuels, advanced manufacturing, food processing and information technology,” said IDED Director Debi Durham. “The innovative companies represented today are building on Iowa’s economic strengths and recognize the quality of the work force here in our state.”


Joint project in Osage receives award

The board made awards to Valent BioSciences Corp. and the city of Osage for a proposed joint project. The company, which makes biological pesticides and plant growth regulators, is proposing a 130,000 square-foot manufacturing facility in Osage that will house fermentation tanks with downstream processing equipment, an office, warehouse and quality assurance laboratories. The board awarded one million dollars in direct financial assistance to the company and tax incentives through the Enterprise Zone program. The project represents a $132 million capital investment by Valent BioSciences and is expected to create 89 jobs, 48 of which would be supported by state incentives. An announcement by the company is expected Monday. The board also approved a $500,000 grant to the city of Osage to increase capacity at its wastewater treatment plant in order to accommodate the needs of Valent BioSciences.


Biorefinery campus planned for Fort Dodge

The board approved two million dollars in direct financial assistance in the form of loans to Cargill, Incorporated to begin ethanol production at the former Tate & Lyle facility outside Fort Dodge and transform it into an integrated biorefinery campus for production of bio-based products. The facility is meant to replicate the success of biorefinery campuses in Eddyville and Blair, Nebraska. The project is expected to create 104 jobs, 96 of which are supported by state incentives. The board also approved tax incentives through the High Quality Jobs program.


Cedar Rapids company eyes expansion

The board approved $250,000 in direct financial assistance to American Profol, Inc., for a proposed additional production line at its Cedar Rapids plant. The company manufactures cast polypropylene films. Its products are used for such things as adhesive-coated tapes, heat-sealed bags, printed banners, DVD case overlays, multi-layer laminates, automotive and construction films and magazine overwraps. The project would represent a $14 million capital investment. The company is also considering out-of-state locations for this project. If Iowa is selected, a production line will be added, and an existing line and 25 jobs will be retained.


Food distributor considering expansion

The board approved $215,000 in direct financial assistance and tax incentives to Capital City Fruit for a proposed office, distribution and repacking facility in Norwalk. The company is a regional distributor of fresh fruits and vegetables and serves retail grocery distribution centers and institutional food service wholesale customers in a six-state region. The company is proposing to have Comito Real Estate construct a new building with 70,000 square feet for Capital City Fruit’s distribution center and 12,000 square feet for its offices. Capital City Fruit would lease the facility which would allow the company to compete in the modernizing food regulation environment. The project represents an $11.4 million capital investment and would create four jobs supported by state incentives and retain 119 jobs, of which 42 would be covered by state incentives. Tax incentives awarded were through the High Quality Jobs program.


Financial incentives approved for Flexsteel Industries, Inc.

The board awarded $40,000 in direct financial assistance and approved tax incentives for furniture maker Flexsteel Industries, Inc. to build a new corporate headquarters in the Port of Dubuque. Flexsteel is one of the oldest and largest manufacturers of residential and commercial upholstered and wooden furniture products in the country. Its products include sofas, loveseats, chairs, desks, tables and dining and bedroom furniture. The project represents a $12 million capital investment and is expected to create 10 jobs supported by state incentives. Current corporate jobs will be moved to the new, four-story, 40,000 square-foot facility. Tax incentives approved for the project are through the Enterprise Zone program.


Le Mars company proposes expansion

The board approved tax incentives through the High Quality Jobs program for IML Containers Iowa, Inc. to complete a proposed expansion of its facility in Le Mars. The company is part of the Lacroix Group, a French company that is a leader in the production of wooden, cardboard and plastic containers for the dairy market. The proposal includes a 46,500 square-foot expansion that would house further production and warehouse areas. Additional injection molding machines would be purchased to increase production capacity. The proposed project represents an $11 million capital investment and is expected to create 29 new jobs, one of which is supported with state incentives.


Sara Lee Foods considers expansion in Storm Lake

The board awarded $500,000 in direct financial assistance and additional tax incentives to Sara Lee Foods for a proposed expansion of its Storm Lake turkey processing plant and the addition of gizzard harvesting. An upgraded wastewater treatment system and new cooling equipment at the plant and a testing center are part of the proposal.  If the project moves forward, it would represent a $10.9 million capital investment. The tax incentives would be provided through the state’s High Quality Jobs program.


Cedar Rapids software company receives grant

The board awarded a $25,000 grant to People Statements, LLC of Cedar Rapids for marketing and distribution channel expansion, software enhancements and website development. The company was formed in June 2010 to market a product called Generally Accepted People Metrics, or GAPM. GAPM is a software tool for culture assessment which provides a more comprehensive evaluation system than traditional programs.


The following projects were approved for awards through the Iowa Demonstration Fund which encourages commercialization activities by small and medium-sized Iowa companies in the advanced manufacturing, biosciences and information technology industries.


Cedar Rapids technology company receives award

The board awarded $50,000 to BuyerCompass, LLC of Clive to assist with design, social media marketing and public relations for their project that enables a better shopping experience. The technology company provides mobile and web commerce platforms targeted at the consumer packaged goods industry, starting with the retail grocery segment. The company has built a one-stop-shop application with both web and mobile components.


Pella manufacturer is award recipient

The board awarded $150,000 to Fleenor Manufacturing in Pella to prepare its industrial tub grinder for commercialization. The funds will be used to design and make the tooling, jigs and fixtures required to build the components in production and to maintain a high level of quality for the machine. In addition, the dollars will support an initial marketing campaign to demonstrate the value of the product to key potential customers and the marketplace.


Ames biotech firm gets award

The board awarded $150,000 to MTI BioTech in Ames to study its nutritional product. The company has developed an improved delivery method for hydroxy methyl butyrate, or HMB, an ingredient used in the sports nutrition industry and a key ingredient in medical nutritional products. The free acid form of HMB is not currently marketed anywhere else, and the company believes a toxicology study as part of its filing with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration would be beneficial. The award from the Demonstration Fund will assist in costs related to study and testing of the product.


Marion company gets award for product development

The board awarded $150,000 to Syncbak, Inc. of Marion for development of its Syncbox technology which allows viewers to see their local television broadcasts over the Internet. Currently, broadcast network affiliation agreements strictly define who can receive broadcast signals. Although local broadcast content can be carried on cable and satellite, legislation does not yet cover retransmission of the same content over the web. Syncbak’s technology gives broadcasters an inexpensive way to authenticate viewers to access live and on-demand broadcast television via broadband enabled devices. The award through the Demonstration Fund will be used to install additional pilots of Syncbak’s Syncbox and build a commercially deployable Syncbox.


Milford firm gets award to market software

The board awarded $50,000 to R & D Industries in Milford doing business as Thinix. The award will assist the company in its efforts to market its Thinix Touch software for the Windows-based tablet PC. The company’s plan includes a targeted marketing campaign aimed at adding new manufacturer partners, as well as selling Thinix Touch at selected tradeshows, production of print materials for direct marketing, website development, search engine optimization, online press releases and direct personal selling.


Cedar Rapids company gets award for prototype

The board awarded $150,000 to Applied Microwave Technology, Inc. doing business as AMTek. The Cedar Rapids company is pursuing the development and manufacturing of a microwave vessel system for the food and beverage industry. The company plans to use the award to design, manufacture and test a prototype. Foods or beverages currently made in a batch system heated by steam, transfer oil, electricity or gas could be a candidate for this type of system. The company provides products for industrial microwave processing and systems, as well as cables and controls for manufacturers, including wind turbine manufacturers.


Award to assist Dubuque company in pilot project

The board approved $150,000 for A.Y. McDonald Manufacturing Co. of Dubuque to install its product, known as the Un-measured Flow Reducer, in one or more Iowa cities and study the results as part of a pilot project. The Un-measured Flow Reducer, or UFR, is a device that boosts the ability of water meters to detect and measure low-flows that would otherwise go unmeasured. Small low-flows such as leaks and drips are typically unaccounted for with standard residential water meters, but the UFR can decrease that unaccounted water by 5 to 10 percent.




Download a spreadsheet of these awards:


Sign up to receive news updates



Iowa Economic Development Authority
200 East Grand Avenue
Des Moines, Iowa 50309
Phone: 1.515.348.6200
email: Email Us

Drop Us a Line.

Stay Informed.
Sign Up to Receive Updates.
Emails highlighting economic development news, program updates and upcoming events.