A moving and logistics company took a break Thursday from its rapid expansion to mark completion of a 100,000-square-foot Malta facility — but only a short break.
Next week, Arnoff Moving & Storage will present the town with conceptual plans for a 60,000-square-foot Phase II, and if the reception is favorable, company officials hope to have another ribbon-cutting by the end of this year.
Thursday, though, was a day to look back on what has been accomplished since late 2016, when Arnoff began overhauling and expanding a disused auto floor mat factory.
“Today is a thank you, it’s a showcase, it’s our family coming together,” President Mike Arnoff said. By family he means his employees and mid-level managers, as well as his father, wife, nephew and sons, who also are involved in the five-generation company that started in the mid-Hudson Valley in 1924.
“We’re excited,” he said. “We’re in our new digs and the dream is coming true.”
The company has long had dual headquarters in Poughkeepsie and in Albany’s Warehouse District. North Albany has recently been changing to a mixed-use neighborhood, and Arnoff took the opportunity to sell its increasingly valuable property there — the landmark building with Nipper the RCA Dog on top — for conversion to apartments.
Looking for more efficient space than the multistory Albany building, it bought the old Racemark factory off Stonebreak Road and expanded it from 72,000 to 97,000 square feet over the last seven months, creating a single-level warehouse and office space that will serve both aspects of the Arnoff business: moving/storage and logistics (through its subsidiary Arnoff Global Logistics).
Moving/storage involves transport of goods for businesses and individuals, anything from the contents of a three-bedroom house to the machinery that runs in a factory. Logistics involves creation of an ongoing supply line, with warehousing, inventory and delivery for commercial and industrial clients.
The Malta site’s close proximity to the Northway and its capacity for additional construction — it totals 40 acres — is key to the vision that the company is working to make reality.
“We see the need for what I’m calling a logistics campus,” Mike Arnoff said. “I see Arnoff as the logistics hub with a variety of different companies emanating from that hub that need logistics services.”
That could be a custom-built freestanding building or it could be space and/or shared services in the larger building, he said.
“All will have a common need for shared resources,” Mike Arnoff said. And the company already has the trained workforce, the space, the access, the warehouse system, and the state-of-the-art packaging crating system to make it happen, he said, as well as certification from DHL, FedEx and UPS as a local agent service location.
Phase II in the plan is construction of a more than 50,000-square-foot addition to the current building, and construction of a roughly 10,000-square-foot detached maintenance building for the company’s nearly 200 trucks and vans.
The company has done the preliminary design work and will present a conceptual plan to the town Tuesday.
“We hope to get their endorsement,” Mike Arnoff said. If the town is supportive, formal design work will begin. With necessary approvals in hand, construction could be complete before 2017.
The company has appreciated the reception extended to it by local officials in the booming area of Saratoga County.
“With everything going on, we have really found focused government officials who are not getting in the way,” he said. “They want to see development here.”
The company received about $1.1 million in tax breaks from the Saratoga County Industrial Development Agency for the $11.6 million Phase I and will ask the IDA to grant tax breaks for Phase II, once the plans are firmed up.
Along with the physical infrastructure, the company is expanding its human infrastructure.
“Since the first of the year we’ve hired 40 people,” Mike Arnoff said. “We’re well over 90 at the Malta site now. We have at least 15 openings that we’re interviewing for as we speak.”
He added that the company is meeting Friday with Saratoga Economic Development Corp. to work out a way to recruit some of the 37 Cardinal Health employees who will lose their jobs when the health care industry supplier closes its Halfmoon warehouse, which is only 5 miles away from Arnoff’s Malta site.
The company’s original projections had it reaching the 100-employee mark in Malta within three years of opening.
It’s just about there already.