RALEIGH -- Today, Governor Pat McCrory and North Carolina Commerce Secretary Sharon Decker announced that Castle Branch, a company that provides background screening, drug testing, employment verification, vendor credentialing and other services, will expand its corporate headquarters in Wilmington. The company plans to create 420 new jobs in North Carolina by the end of 2017 and invest $10.2 million into its New Hanover County location.
“We’re proud to have Castle Branch as a strong corporate partner in North Carolina,” said Governor McCrory. “Their expansion is a great example of a company choosing to create jobs and invest in our state as they grow."
Founded in 1997, Castle Branch began as a provider of background checks and drug-testing services for businesses. Since that time, the company has evolved into related fields that include heath care and vendor credentialing tools. Castle Branch employs 200 people at its Wilmington headquarters and recently expanded with a sales office in California.
“We are committed to growing the number of jobs in North Carolina and we know that a majority of those jobs will come from existing companies like Castle Branch,” said Sharon Decker, North Carolina Secretary of Commerce. “We applaud Brett Martin for the great work that he is doing and his commitment to invest in North Carolina as his company grows.”
Castle Branch plans to expand in order to accommodate the growing demand for its services. The expansion will include many corporate functions including, but not limited to, customer service, IT and sales.
“The expansion of our Wilmington facility will require more than 400 employees and significant long term investments in the community. We are excited and grateful that the state, city and county have joined us in this effort,” said Brett Martin, CEO of Castle Branch.
Compensation will vary by job function, but total payroll is estimated to be $13.9 million plus benefits. The average annual wage in New Hanover County is $38,204.
“This is great news for the New Hanover County economy,” said Senator Thom Goolsby. “It's encouraging to see our new governor moving quickly to help accelerate job creation in our area. Castle Branch is a great company and asset to our county. We have to stay focused on job creation -- it's our number one objective.”
“This is great news for our citizens,” said Rep. Susi Hamilton. “I was Executive Director of Wilmington Downtown Inc. when Castle Branch made the decision to relocate here 11 years ago, and they employed 25 people at that time. Now they have 200 well-paid employees, with plans to hire 400 more as they make Wilmington their world headquarters. I am thrilled that the city and county saw fit to encourage them to grow here, rather than California. It is extremely satisfying to see a growing company that provides clean, well-paying jobs dig their heels into our area.”
The project was made possible in part by an award from the state Job Development Investment Grant (JDIG) program. Receipt of the award is based on proof of job creation and other performance requirements. Today, the state Economic Investment Committee voted to award a Job Development Investment Grant (JDIG) to Castle Branch. JDIGs are awarded only to new and expanding businesses and industrial projects whose benefits exceed the costs to the state and which would not be undertaken in North Carolina without the grant.
Under the terms of the company’s JDIG award, Castle Branch is eligible to receive up to eight annual grants equal to 45 percent of the state personal income tax withholdings from the eligible new jobs created since the date of the initial award. Receipt of each annual grant is based on state-certified proof that the company has fulfilled incremental job creation and capital investment requirements. Over eight years, the JDIG award could yield aggregate benefits to Castle Branch of up to $1,238,250.
In addition, up to $413,000 in additional funds from the company’s JDIG award could be added to the state’s Utility Fund for infrastructure improvements in economically distressed counties. When a JDIG is awarded to a company whose site is located in the state’s more economically prosperous counties such as New Hanover, 25 percent of the company’s grant is allocated to the Utility Fund to encourage economic development in less prosperous counties. For more information on the county tier designations, visit: http://www.nccommerce.com/research-publications/incentive-reports/county-tier-designations.
Other partners who assisted with this announcement include: The N.C. Department of Commerce, N.C. Community Colleges, New Hanover County, Wilmington Business Development, and the City of Wilmington.
For more information about Castle Branch, including job opportunities, visit www.castlebranch.com.
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