Wind turbine firm gets grants to stay in Mass.
Massachusetts is giving $3 million in grants and loans to FloDesign Wind Turbine Corp. of Wilbraham to keep the company here after several other states tried to lure it away.
In return, FloDesign has promised to relocate its headquarters to Waltham, and hire more than 100 people.
Governor Deval Patrick is scheduled to award the incentives today during a presentation at Logan Airport, highlighting FloDesign's technology, which applies jet engine manufacturing methods to make high-efficiency wind turbines.
The financial support definitely factored into the firm's decision to stay local, said Stanley Kowalski III, a founder of FloDesign.
"Oh yeah, the green tech market is a hot one and the states are all looking to claim it as their own," Kowalski said. "It turns out the commonwealth was the smartest path forward ... it was financially attractive and, my God, the source for intellectual capital."
Unlike traditional wind turbines with long propeller-like blades, FloDesign's turbines use shorter blades contained in a bonnet-like covering, or shroud, that funnels fast and slow moving air. The design, company officials say, make the turbines more efficient and lower-maintenance.
"We have a lot of work ahead of us and are excited to have strong partners in Governor Patrick and the MassCEC [Massachusetts Clean Energy Center]," said company chief executive Lars Andersen.
Kowalski said FloDesign's ties to the state - its founders are Massachusetts natives - also played a big role in the firms decision to stay here.
"There is a strong sense of community and interest in maintaining a presence here as long as we can," he said.