SKS Bottle & Packaging began in 1986 in Saratoga County. After several moves, it ended up at a 10,000-square foot space in Malta. The company continued to grow, and in 2005, relocated to a 52,000-square foot space in Watervliet, in Albany County. That space has expanded again, to 102,000 square feet, and in 2015 a West Coast facility was built in Reno, Nevada.
That trend of expanding and moving continues, as the wholesaler and distributor for containers that employs more than 100 workers is looking to move home to Saratoga County to its own space.
SKS is working with Saratoga Economic Development Corporation to move into a 22-acre site off Geyser Road in Saratoga Springs.
SEDC President Dennis Brobston…
“We were looking to keep them here because very little of their product gets distributed in New York state. So they could do this just about anywhere. So keeping them in the region, brinigng them back home to Saratoga is a good project for us,” said Brobston.
The company is planning to use a 128,000-square foot building at the site to serve as corporate headquarters and include a warehouse and distribution center.
SKS says the plan is to expand its “facility to approximately 250,000 square feet within the next 10 years.”
That could add even more jobs, from 100 employees currently to approximately 120 in three years.
If it remained in Watervliet, SKS predicts it could outgrow its current location in 6 to 8 years.
Four locations in Saratoga County were considered by the company before it chose the Geyser Road location.
SKS and SEDC recently submitted an application to Saratoga County IDA for a 10 Year Commercial Services PILOT — a payment in lieu of taxes — as well as sales tax and mortgage tax exemptions to facilitate the move and installation of equipment, machinery, furniture, and fixtures at the site.
Warehousing and distribution has become a significant factor in Saratoga County’s growing economy.
Companies like Target and Ace Hardware have opened facilities in recent years. Saratoga County Chamber of Commerce President Todd Shimkus gave three straightforward reasons:
“It is location, location, location. The companies that are doing distribution are looking for close, easy access to the highway. They’re looking for close, easy access to major metro areas, populations. And populations are both people as well as businesses. We often say you can get to Montreal, Boston, New York City in three hours from here, and there ya go, that’s the location,” said Shimkus.
Brobston says the area is also centrally located for a strong workforce.
Since Target and Ace have moved to the area, SEDC has worked with SUNY Adirondack and Hudson Valley Community College and has sought to develop vocational education for working in today’s warehouses.
“Warehouses have changed a lot from just manually picking and writing down on a sheet of paper to you have to be technically cooperative with a program. So all those things, and we’ve worked hard at that. The region has worked hard at that because of our location,” said Brobston.
About $16 million in private sector investment is predicted for the project. Saratoga County IDA will consider the application at its Dec. 12 meeting.