Venture gains a jump start in relocating operation

Kristi Pollard
Kristi Pollard

A company that makes self-contained, soiless growing systems has relocated its operations to the Grand Valley in part to take advantage of tax incentives offered under a new program.

The Colorado Economic Development Commission approved REBCO Enterprises to participate in the Rural Jump-Start Program in Mesa County. REBCO founder Reb Bieber moved the company from California.

The Grand Junction Economic Partnership, an organization that recruits businesses and assists with expansions, announced the decision.

Kristi Pollard, executive director of GJEP, said the Grand Valley offers a lot of synergies to industry in California. “We’ve got a strong foundation in agriculture, health care and renewable energy, and we also have a fast-growing tech industry,” Pollard said.

REBCO manufactures what it bills as the Hydropot, a low-energy, self-contained, soiless growing system that recycles water. The company distributes its products to hydroponics stores, nurseries and wholesale distributors nationwide.

REBCO is the fourth business to gain approval for Jump-Start incentives since the beginning of the year, when Mesa County was the first county in Colorado selected to participate in the program.

GJEP said REBCO plans to produce the two largest components for the Hydropot in Grand Junction using local manufacturers.

Colorado Clear, ProStar Geocorp and TSW Analytics also have been approved for the program. Colorado Clear has developed a plastic container that’s both recyclable and biodegradable. The Palisade company also bottles water in the containers. ProStar Geocorp in Grand Junction has developed computer software to help pipeline and utility companies locate and manage infrastructure. Australian-based TSW Analytics, a ledader in forensics investigation and technology development, opened its first North American operation in Mesa County in part to take advantage of the Jump-Start incentives.

The Jump-Start Program creates zones in Colorado in which eligible businesses are exempted from paying state and local taxes.

Qualifying businesses are exempt from paying state income, use and sales taxes as well as county and municipal personal property taxes. In Mesa County, local government jurisdictions have offered additional incentives.

To participate, the core functions of businesses may not compete with existing operations. Businesses must create a minimum of five net new jobs in the county in which they’re located and establish a relationship with an institution of higher education — Colorado Mesa University in Mesa County.

Businesses are evaluated annually to ensure ongoing compliance. Businesses may receive tax exemptions for up to four years with an option for an additional four years.

Pollard said the Jump-Start program will help both in recruiting new businesses as well as launching new ventures. “Mesa County is budding with young entrepreneurs with big ideas.”

For more information about the Rural Jump-Start Zone program in Mesa County, call 245-4332 or log on to www.jumpstartmesaco.com.