Meeting reveals possible expansion plansAn announcement after a closed session at the June 26 City Council meeting revealed that two local private businesses may expand in the not-too-distant future.
By: Debbie Griffin, River Falls Journal
An announcement after a closed session at the June 26 City Council meeting revealed that two local private businesses may expand in the not-too-distant future.
City Administrator Scot Simpson announced that night that the council had OK’d draft agreements with Interfacial Solutions and BioDiagnostics to buy and build on lots in the Whitetail Ridge Corporate Park that are adjacent to their existing facilities.
Simpson said the deals are tentative. They are unapproved and unsigned, but conditions for both to happen look favorable.
Both documents stipulate that part of the plan would be for each company to have a developer’s agreement with the city.
Jeff Cernohous, Chairman and Chief Technical Officer of Interfacial Solutions, 949 Antler Court, confirmed that his company will likely sign with the city an agreement for first right of refusal to buy real estate nearby its current building in the Whitetail Ridge Corporate Park.
The agreement calls for Interfacial to pay $2,500 for the right to be offered the property first if and when any others show interest in it -- the ‘hold’ would be effective from July 2012 through July 2014.
The draft document says Interfacial would commit to one of two possible scenarios, both of which put the purchase price at $1: Either buy four acres and build a 40,000-square-foot facility valued at $2 million or buy eight acres and build an 80,000-square-foot building valued at $4 million. Construction would be completed either a) within one year of a developer’s agreement being signed, or b) by the end of December, 2015.
Cernohous said, “My core business continues to grow.”
He said the potential building in Whitetail Ridge relates to a spinoff business of Interfacial’s named Magma Composites. The owner said the product involves backing for green flooring that has a PVC-free underlayment.
Cernohous said he’s already leased space in the city’s other business park -- the building at 283 Troy St. -- to house operations for the growing new division.
He explains that Magma Composites uses natural volcanic ash to make the product, which is also water resistant.
He and other Interfacial staff have traveled to Europe hoping to launch the flooring product there in 2013.
Cernohous explained that Interfacial needs to buy an expensive piece of equipment to make the flooring concept viable -- the company is exploring its options for raising venture capital and financing through traditional methods.
Established in 2003, Interfacial Solutions is a privately held materials-development and transfer organization dedicated to helping clients successfully address their technological challenges through materials science.
Learn more about Interfacial Solutions at its web site: www.interfacialsolutions.com.
BioDiagnostics owner and President Quentin Schultz confirmed that he’s working with River Falls to draft an option agreement that says his company will pay a $5,000 fee for an “option to buy real estate,” in this case an eight-acre site nearby its building at 507 Highland Dr.
The draft document says the city would sell the land for $1, with the expectation that by the end of 2014, the business would build a 35,000-square-foot commercial building valued at $3.5 million.
BioDiagnostics is a 12-year-old biotechnology firm that offers a full line of standard seed-testing services for the industry as well as testing for genetics, trait purity and adventitious presence.
Learn more about BioDiagnostics at its web site:www.biodiagnostics.net.