RI working to lure Connecticut battery maker

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – A Connecticut battery company is looking to move its operations to Rhode Island. And the Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation has offered incentives to lure the company to East Greenwich.

Yardney Technical Products makes high-performance batteries for aerospace and defense companies - its batteries powered the Mars landing rover.

And for 40 years it's made those batteries in Connecticut, just across the state line from Westerly. But now it's looking to move to a space in East Greenwich.

Yardney has about 150 employees, and company president Vincent Yevoli said he's been looking for a place that would be a reasonable commute for his employees.

"A major incentive for us is to find a place or location they could still drive to and not take too much time out of their day behind the wheel of a car," said Yevoli.

The EDC has offered Yardney a $5 million financing package and sales tax rebate.

EDC Executive Director Keith Stokes says this offer to Yardney is an example of Rhode Island becoming more attractive in the New England marketplace.

"Local companies now have the option to grow and stay right here in Rhode Island," said Stokes. "And then those companies in New England who are growing, as they're looking for options to grow Rhode Island's now become a fairly competitive place and Yardney's certainly fits that requirement."

Yardney has found a location at 2000 South Country Trail in East Greenwich, and is now going through due diligence. Yevoli said the company will decide on the move right after Thanksgiving.

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