UNION COUNTY — The sale of the county spec building will not only enable Union County to recoup its investment but to also clear nearly $70,000.
The county is in the process of selling the spec building, located at 2 LSP Drive at the entrance of Commerce Park off US 176, to Agracel Inc. of Effingham, Illinois.
Supervisor Frank Hart said that the county financed the construction of the spec building with a loan from Santee Cooper. Under the terms of the loan, the county could borrow up to $2.5 million. However, Hart said the county only spent $1,809,475.56 on the construction of the spec building.
Agracel is buying the spec building from the county for $1,528,890 or $280,585.56 less than the county spent to build it.
Hart, however, said that even though the price being paid by Agracel is less than what the county paid for the spec building the county will nevertheless recoup its investment and will actually clear nearly $70,000. He said the county received a $350,000 RIF grant from the state for the spec building project. The grant does not have to be repaid and Hart said that when it is factored in the county not only recouped its investment, it actually cleared $69,414.44.
“This is a good deal for the county,” Hart said, adding that the profit the county turned from the sale will go into its Economic Development Fund.
When the sale was first announced in August, Hart said that it was part of the county’s strategy for preparing the site for industrial recruitment. He pointed out that Agracel specializes in up-fitting buildings for manufacturing
The spec building site includes the 60,000 square-foot building itself, an adjacent 60,000 square-foot building pad, and an additional 45,000 square feet of open land. The pad and the additional land are there to accommodate any potential industrial expansion that may occur.
The building itself is currently an empty shell with a dirt floor which Hart said in August makes it easier for Agracel to develop the facility as it sees fit. He said the property has all the necessary utilities including power, water, sewer, and gas for industrial development as well as ready access to US 176.
Union County Council approve second reading of an ordinance authorizing the sale of the spec building during a special council meeting Friday afternoon.
According to its website (www.agracel.com), Agracel, was “established in 1986 by John M. ‘Jack’ Schultz, Agracel, Inc. humbly began as a farmland investment company. When looking to name the firm, two words kept surfacing: Agriculture and Excel. Thus our name was born (Agriculture + Excel = Agracel). As the years passed Agracel’s core focus turned from farm ground to industrial development in rural America.”
“Though our days of farmland investments are over, we have chosen to retain the Agracel name. We believe firmly in the principals set forth by our agricultural heritage. The name Agracel ties us to the land and the good things that farmers stand for. Excellence not only in agriculture, but in everything they do.”
“These principals have allowed Agracel to grow by leaps and bounds over the past 30 years. Today, Team Agracel has developed over 12 million sf (square feet) of industrial space in 17 states.”
The website states that the company’s mission is “to be the premier provider of development services to Agurb® communities, facilitating and retaining manufacturing and hi-tech jobs, resulting in a strong portfolio of buildings, thus creating long-term value for our stakeholders.”
Charles Warner can be reached at 864-762-4090.