NJ gives Philly firm $3.1M tax break for $1.3M building

Berry & Homer, which prints ads on fabric to wrap around vehicles and buildings, is leaving its home in Philadelpha's Port Richmond for new quarters in Pennsauken, after New Jersey approved a $3.14 million, 10-year tax incentive so the firm can buy the building for $1.3 million.

The 27,000 square foot warehouse Berry & Homer is taking over, at 7150 Westfield Ave. was used most recently to store Camden County voting machines, says broker Ian Richman, who closed the deal with colleague Marc Isdaner of Colloers International. They represented the seller, Bloom Organization. Berry & Homer chief executive Joe Thompson wasn't immediately available for comment. Berry & Homer is leaving its old address, 2035 Richmond St.

So many companies have gotten state aid to move to Camden that the former factory city is running out of suitable small-business industrial sites, and vacant locations in Pennsauken are also filling up, Richman told me. Grow New Jersey tax credits, like the ones given to Berry & Homer, have been used to lure Cooper Health, Holtec International, Philadelphia 76ers and Subaru of America operations from nearby locations into the City of Camden. The program has also benefited sites in Pennsauken directly by attracting a string of smaller companies to qualified properties, Richman added.

He said he and Isdaner have sold 20 Pennsauken industrial properties since 2012, and "we are seeing a fair amount of movement from Philadelphia." The pair use Grow New Jersey tax incentives, which began in 2013 (corrected), in their promotional materials.

At least one public company, Destination Maternity, used Grow New Jersey tax breaks in leaving one of Philadelphia's most highly-touted development sites, the former Navy Yard in South Philly, for Moorestown in 2013.