116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
A Wisconsin-based company that produces pellets for renewable fuel will receive incentives from the state of Iowa to create jobs at its new location in Fairfax.
The Iowa Economic Development Authority said Friday it has awarded incentives to Convergen Energy.
The company plans to establish a 100,000-square-foot production facility in Fairfax to “better position the company to reach new and existing customers throughout the region,” according to an IEDA news release. The total capital investment will be $18.4 million.
Eleven of the 23 new jobs that Convergen will create in Iowa will be incented through the state’s High Quality Jobs program at a qualifying wage of $24.20 per hour.
The company, founded in 2009, produces pellets that are used in solid fuel power and steam generation facilities.
The process shreds and blends non-recyclable paper, labels and packaging material destined for landfills and turns them into pellets that can be used in solid fuel boilers such as those that burn coal.
Convergen has been working with the University of Iowa for years to turn university-grown miscanthus grass into pellets that can be burned at the UI power plant.
The Fairfax City Council voted earlier this month to approve a resolution that expresses its intent to provide economic development support to Convergen Energy. According to the resolution, the city will provide tax exemptions on a sliding scale from 75 percent in year one, to 15 percent in year five.
Fairfax City Clerk-Treasurer Cynthia Stimson said the city plans to annex the land along Lefebure Road, south of Travero Logistics, where the Convergen plant will be built.
Coralville start-up receives state award
A UI spin-off company that’s developing treatments for knee injuries received a Demonstration Fund award from the IEDA board last week.
CartilaGen was awarded $125,000 for product refinement, marketing planning, market entry activities and key personnel.
The company was founded by Frank Yu, a former UI graduate student, and Jaison Marks, a former UI undergraduate student, who developed the treatment while working together in a university research lab.
The company produces an intra-articular injection of small-molecule drug that can prevent osteoarthritis after a traumatic injury.
“The technology has demonstrated strong preclinical results and is now advanced to the stage of human clinical testing,” according to an IEDA news release.