Fri April 11, 2014
Philip Morris Sells Concord Plant
The former Philip Morris plant in Concord has a new owner after sitting vacant for 5 years. It’s a company called Victory Industrial Park, LLC. But what that company plans to do with the property is less clear. WFAE’s Duncan McFadyen reports.
Let’s start with what we know. According to property records, the deal closed yesterday for about 68.5 million dollars. Concord mayor Scott Padgett says he got the call yesterday morning.
“I’m excited today, I’m extremely excited," he says. "There’s a lot of positive energy as a result of this, and I think we’re all anxiously awaiting the next step.”
Just what that next step is, though, is less clear. The company that bought the 2,100 acre site is called Victory Industrial Park. The man behind it is a Norwegian named Jostein Eikeland. On his website, Eikeland calls himself a visionary serial entrepreneur involved in the technology, automotive, energy storage, and environmental sectors. He claims to have coined the phrase “Application Service Provider,” or ASP, what we now know as cloud computing.
Eikeland is listed as a co-inventor on at least four U.S. patents, all related to electric vehicle charging. He’s also the CEO of the Victory Truck and Bus Company, which holds a patent for an electric vehicle drive system.
Eikeland’s spokesman says the Philip Morris property’s occupant or occupants will be in the clean technology business. It’ll be June at the earliest when the plans are announced.
At one time, there were as many as 2,500 workers at the Philip Morris plant. When it closed in 2009, a thousand people lost their jobs.