During its meeting March 8, the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) voted to approve EpiBone Inc. to receive up to $3.5 million over seven years in Emerge tax credits, setting the stage for the Brooklyn-based company to move to Jersey City.
EpiBone, a clinical stage company founded in 2013, grows bone and cartilage for skeletal reconstruction using stem cells to create healthy bone, cartilage and compound products in a lab. The company has been operating out of the Downstate Biotechnology Incubator space in Brooklyn—a space it has outgrown.
With the tax credits secured, EpiBone committed to moving its headquarters to 95 Greene St. in Jersey City. The base will include research and development facilities and clean room space. The positions moving to Jersey City include executive staff, clinical positions, research, system engineers, lab support, quality control and quality assurance specialists, manufacturing support, information technology, and various administrative functions.
The company plans to create 90 positions here in New Jersey.
EpiBone is led by co-founder and Chief Executive Officer Dr. Nina Marie Tandon, a New York City native and biomedical engineer, who holds several patents and is known for her TED Talks on engineered tissue and the future of personalized medicine.
“New Jersey’s educated and diverse talent pool, accessible location, and network of high-profile research universities make it an ideal spot for a dynamic, rapidly growing business to reach its potential,” said Tandon in a statement. “New Jersey also offers a robust range of programs to support companies through all stages of growth. New Jersey, in particular, is a model of diversity, has a thriving innovation community, and is accessible via mass transit – all just a short drive from lower Manhattan and major international airports.”
Gov. Phil Murphy said the announcement is another example of the Garden State expanding its nation-leading life sciences ecosystem.
“EpiBone will serve as an invaluable asset to our growing economy as it brings nearly 100 new jobs to our state and innovates at the cutting edge of life-changing biotechnology,” said Murphy.
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Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop welcomed EpiBone as the city’s newest resident, saying the move continues the promotion of growth and economic development amid “one of the greatest renaissances Jersey City has ever seen.”
“Businesses want to relocate here to be part of the progress. We have welcomed several majorly successful companies in recent years as they move their operations across the Hudson River and even across the nation seeking out Jersey City where we have become a destination for businesses of all sizes to grow and thrive,” said Fulop. “We look forward to the job creation and economic growth that these companies can offer communities like ours, and we’re thankful for the efforts on the state-level to further push this narrative.”
EpiBone is the first company approved under Emerge to qualify for the program’s “Small Business” designation, allowing for increased flexibility and enhanced benefits as it grows in the Garden State. Emerge was created as part of the New Jersey Economic Recovery Act (ERA) to help businesses and nonprofits apply for tax credits to support projects that meet minimum capital investment, job creation or retention, and other requirements when competing with another state.
The state says that the project is expected to yield a net benefit greater than 300% to the state over its 11-year commitment period.
“The board’s approval of EpiBone for tax credits illustrates the ability of the Emerge program to attract growing innovation companies to New Jersey,” said NJEDA Chief Executive Officer Tim Sullivan.s