Moderna Therapeutics Secures Tax Incentives with Assistance from Business Development Strategies

Greetings from all of us at Business Development Strategies, Inc. (BDS). Our entire team is looking forward to the opening of Moderna Therapeutics (Moderna) new state-of-the-art GMP clinical manufacturing facility in Norwood.

Moderna is a clinical stage biotechnology company that is advancing transformative messenger RNA, or mRNA, medicines in areas such as infectious diseases, rare diseases, immuno-oncology, personalized cancer vaccines, and cardiovascular and pulmonary diseases.

Transforming a Vacant Building

In Norwood, Moderna is leasing and renovating a 200,000 square foot building to manufacture its mRNA medicines for use in clinical studies. Formerly occupied by Polaroid, the unoccupied facility was in the early stages of a major renovation project when Moderna showed interest in the property. Moderna’s initial investment of an estimated $110 million will include renovation and personal property costs. Build-out of the facility is underway, with the site expected to open in 2018.

Real estate broker Peter Bekarian, managing director at JLL, conducted the real estate site search and identified the building, which is located in the Upland Woods Corporate Center. The property is owned by Campanelli-Trigate Norwood Upland, LLC.

Gaining Support for Tax Incentives

When Moderna leadership realized more space would be needed to accommodate its manufacturing operations, they turned to BDS for assistance in exploring access to tax incentives. The BDS team guided the project through layers of the government incentives process. As a result, Moderna gained unanimous support for a tax increment financing (TIF) agreement from the pro-business local officials, Town Meeting and state.

“Lynn Tokarczyk and the BDS team delivered incentives to Moderna on a fast track in order to meet our corporate real estate timeline,” says Stephen Harbin, Senior Vice President, Manufacturing and Operations. “We were fortunate to have a highly regarded firm represent our incentives project.”

A Good Neighbor

The Town of Norwood had ample reason to attract Moderna to the Town. The Company will relocate 100 high-skilled life science jobs from Cambridge to Norwood and has plans to create another 120 full-time jobs after the facility opens.

“The Moderna project offered an exciting opportunity for us to establish Norwood as a future hub for the life science industry and put the Town on the map,” says John Carroll, Norwood General Manager. “We look forward to partnering with Moderna as they expand in the community.”

A Future Life Science Hotbed?

Biotech and pharmaceutical companies have traditionally flocked to a select few Massachusetts communities, such as Cambridge and Worcester. With Moderna’s expansion to Norwood, other firms in these spaces may also follow suit.

A Boon to Massachusetts Businesses and Communities

As the state’s leading government incentives consulting firm, BDS has assisted more than 100 companies in saving over $100 million in state and local taxes since 2003.

Serving privately owned and publicly held companies such as Keurig, TripAdvisor, Potpourri Group, IPG Photonics and MACOM, BDS has helped create more than 6,000 new jobs, retain close to 13,000 jobs and spur an estimated $1 billion in investments in Massachusetts communities.