Ashland Inc. Moving to Bridgewater
The company manufactures chemicals for consumer products.
Ashland Inc., a company that manufactures chemicals for consumer and commercial products, recently announced that it will be moving its operations from Wayne to Bridgewater.
According to a release from Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno, New Jersey-based Ashland Speciality Ingredients was planning to move out of the state. The New Jersey Partnership for Action intervened, the release said, when the company began to consider other locations for the business.
"Nowhere in America is there greater access to highly skilled and educated workers—the very workers critical to the success of technology and science companies—than right here in New Jersey," Guadagno said in the release. "After considering all its option, Ashland's decision to remain in New Jersey further demonstrates that New Jersey is the ideal location for its business."
The company is moving to a 200,000-square-foot laboratory and office in Bridgewater at the former Sanofi site on Route 202/206, and will move more than 300 of its staff to Bridgewater in the second half of 2013.
It was this property on which the township recently changed zoning to allow the site to have multiple tenants in the building. The property was previously a single-tenant property.
"Back in August, the council recognized the importance of the Sanofi site to the economic vitality of Bridgewater and we took steps to ensure that Bridgewater would be able to attract tenants to the site," said councilman Matthew Moench in a statement. "We continue to work to attract high quality businesses like Ashland to Bridgewater."
Ashland, the release said, is signing a short-term lease for another administrative office facility in northern New Jersey, which will house the remaining employees in the company. That facility, which has not yet been found, will include the remaining 40 percent of employees with finance, human relations, law and information technology.
"We appreciate the tremendous support shown by Lt. Gov. Guadagno and the administration as we evaluated potential sites for the relocation," Ashland Speciality Ingredients president John Panichella said in the release. "The state of New Jersey has demonstrated its sincere commitment to working with Ashland as we pursue growth opportunities within our speciality ingredients business."
According to the release, the New Jersey Partnership for Action supports the role business plays in advancing the state's economy and creating jobs.
Gary Rhodes, with Ashland, said the Wayne campus had served as headquarters of International Specialty Products, acquired by Ashland in August 2011.
"At that time, we had shared with employees our intent to eventually relocate operations from the current space, where our lease expires this year, to a new site that will help establish a strong independent Ashland business and brand identity separate from the historical presence of ISP operations and ownership," he said.
Rhodes said they are bringing about 60 percent of their positions from Wayne to Bridgewater in the spring, including research and development, marketing, commercial business teams and some administrative functions.
At the Bridgewater site, Rhodes said, there is also the opportunity to expand in the future.
"It provides us with the flexibility to expand based on the future growth needs of our largest and fastest-growing commercial unit, Ashland Specialty Ingredients," he said. "The Bridgewater site also is close to many of our largest customers, especially in the pharmaceutical and personal care markets."