A section of one of Buffalo's many old industrial buildings now houses a defense contractor that came here to take advantage of the labor pool and the engineers trained at the University at Buffalo.
RED-INC has moved its Team Two into the Larkin Center of Commerce at 701 Seneca St. in South Buffalo's Larkinville. To get Albany to promise more than $1 million in aid, the company agreed to hire 40 new employees. It has hired 17 and is looking for more.
Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown says the company is an asset to the community.
"About $75,000 a year, so those are great-paying jobs," Brown says. "Most of the people working here are graduates of the University at Buffalo and, in fact, even one of the employees that I met today is a graduate of the mayor's summer youth employment program."
Division Lead Leo Kilgore says the company looked beyond its Maryland base and chose Buffalo.
"What we did was we decided that that's where we wanted to put this particular division within the company and it's worked incredibly well for us," says Kilgore. "We're excited to have the people on board that we have. Everybody working here in Buffalo has had some type of roots in Buffalo, whether they are mostly from here, which is great, or they went to school here from some other state and wanted to come back."
Invest Buffalo-Niagara helped RED-INC find its space and helped get the old warehouse space ready for the mass of computers workers' need for its high-tech hardware and software for electronic maintenance.
Kilgore was a Marine helicopter pilot and says RED-INC equipment can cut maintenance and repair of a piece of equipment from 10 or 12 hours to 30 minutes, putting helicopters back in service. Because it is for military use, he says the equipment is designed to work on an aircraft carrier in a stormy ocean. The company wants to expand into civilian markets, using what it has learned.