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Local company moves into foreign trade zone

A thriving printing and mailing firm has moved into a 60,000-square-foot space in the Islip Foreign Trade Zone in Ronkonkoma, and company officials said they plan to create 30 full-time jobs as a result of the expansion.

Advertising Distributors of America, which has a 30-year history in Islip and about 70 employees, distributes Publisher's Clearinghouse prize literature and, according to chief executive and president Matthew Michaelis, outgrew its location in Bohemia during the recession.

Michaelis' company was "growing at a very rapid rate," said Gregg Rechler, managing partner in the real estate firm of Rechler Equity Partners. The firm owns the Trade Zone building and was Michaelis' previous landlord.

"He was growing in three separate spaces that didn't connect, so it was a very inefficient way for them to conduct their business," Rechler added.

But Michaelis, who led a ribbon-cutting at the new location Tuesday, wanted to keep the company in Islip. "We contacted Rechler, and they had this space available, but the tax structure wasn't set up for us, it was too expensive," he said.

The company has no international trade, so wasn't eligible for the zone's tax relief, Islip Supervisor Tom Croci said.

Rechler reached out to the town for help. "We told them we had a business that wanted to stay in Islip and wanted to grow," Rechler said. "They responded so quickly, and we're not used to seeing that in local government."

Rechler said the town modified the lease to allow for a nonimporter/exporter to occupy the space and to spare the lessee penalties for not trading internationally.

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