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CBC Americas, LI pharma distributor, to lay off 46 as it moves to North Carolina

The CBC Americas Corp. building at 55 Mall

The CBC Americas Corp. building at 55 Mall Dr. in Commack on May 29, 2015. Photo Credit: Danielle Finkelstein

CBC Americas Corp., a maker and distributor of pharmaceuticals and chemicals, said it will lay off all 46 workers at its North American headquarters and warehouse in Commack and move its operations to North Carolina.

An official of the company said financial inducements from North Carolina, combined with transportation bottlenecks and high costs in New York, were factors in the move.

Notice of the layoff was made May 28 to the New York State Department of Labor under the federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act, which requires it in certain circumstances.

The layoffs are to begin Aug. 31 and end in January. CBC said all employees were offered transfers and about half accepted. The company has occupied the 59,000- square-foot building at 55 Mall Dr. since 1986. It is to be sold.

CBC said the move would be in two stages, with the offices scheduled to close by the end of August, followed by the warehouse by year's end.

In a statement in April, when CBC first announced the relocation, North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory said that in addition to the new U.S. headquarters in Wake County, CBC will open a distribution center in Alamance County, creating 67 new jobs in Wake and 29 in Alamance over the next five years.

His statement said CBC was awarded a performance-based grant of up to $63,000 from the One North Carolina Fund, which provides financial assistance, through local governments, to attract business and create jobs.

"The inducements were a considerable factor," Philip Petito, vice president and corporate controller of CBC, said Friday. Other factors in the decision to move, he said, were Long Island's high utility and workers' comp costs, and property and sales taxes. "Pretty much across the board, it's generally a little less expensive there," he said of North Carolina.

For distribution, he said, the new location also offers less traffic, fewer tolls and easier access to major interstates and deepwater ports.

He declined to comment when asked if any Long Island entity had offered CBC an inducement to stay.

Kelly Morris, deputy executive director of the Suffolk Industrial Development Agency, said Friday that CBC did not contact that agency. "We have not heard from them at all," she said.

Salaries in North Carolina will vary by job but will include executive, technical and manufacturing positions, the governor said. The average annual salary for the Wake County positions will be $85,962, and the Alamance County positions will average $36,128.

The company plans to invest at least $3.5 million, the governor said.

CBC Americas Corp. is a wholly owned subsidiary of the CBC Group and part of a global network of import, export, trading and distribution companies.

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