2014 Operating Business QLICI of the Year Award Recipients

Winner

Recleim SC LLC

CDEs: AMCREF Community Capital LLC and SunTrust Community Development Enterprises LLC
Developer: Recleim LLC
Owner: Recleim LLC
Location: Graniteville, S.C.

Recleim SC LLC
Photo: Courtesy of AMCREF Community Capital
Recleim, in Graniteville, S.C., is developing a recycling facility that will process electronics and appliance
s.

The winners of the 2014 Operating Business QLICI of the Year Award are AMCREF Community Capital LLC and SunTrust Community Development Enterprises LLC for their investment in Recleim SC LLC in Graniteville, S.C. Recleim is developing a recycling facility that will process electronics and appliances. Susan Seagren, director of AMCREF Community Capital LLC, says the facility is one of the first of its kind and will recycle more than 30,000 tons of appliances annually, with a particular focus on refrigerators. 
Project partners say the Recleim facility is expected to provide a symbol of hope and spur economic growth in the small town of Graniteville. The community is currently in a state of economic recovery, after a train derailment in 2005 caused bankruptcy for the town's primary employer and led to the loss of 1,600 local jobs. Seagren says Recleim will help revitalize the local community and economy by creating 200 full-time jobs at the plant, 88 truck-driving jobs and 100 construction jobs. Recleim will provide full benefits, job training and pay average annual wages that are more than twice the local living wage. Recleim is also partnering with the local community college to train local residents for the jobs.

The Recleim development was designed to have a positive impact on the environment. The recycling process at the facility will recover 95 percent of insulating foam in refrigerators; reduce the typical landfill waste of refrigerators by at least 85 percent; lower greenhouse gas and ozone-depleting emissions; and recover high-quality plastics, aluminum, copper and steel that can be used to make new products. Seagren says recycling one refrigerator reduces carbon dioxide emissions by 10 tons, which is the equivalent of taking two cars off the road for a year.

Although Recleim secured equipment financing, equity capital and a state grant, it needed new markets tax credit (NMTC) financing to close the funding gap. Seagren says that because Recleim was a new business using an innovative recycling process, it wasn't able to secure sufficient traditional bank debt. Relceim instead collaborated with AMCREF and SunTrust to structure NMTC loans with low interest and seven flexible features. The NMTC financing will cover the costs of other necessary equipment, pre-plant inventory and startup costs.

Honorable Mention

Alabama Aircraft Support LLC

CDEs: MuniStrategies LLC and Stonehenge Community Capital LLC
Developer: BrightWater Partners LLC
Owner: BrightWater Partners LLC
Location: Enterprise, Ala.

Alabama Aircraft Support LLC
Photo: Courtesy of Alan Lange
The Alabama Aircraft Support LLC in Enterprise, Ala. is a 65,000-square-foot hanger equipped with the latest technology to provide maintenance, repair and overhaul services for civilian and military helicopters.

The honorable mention for the 2014 Operating Business QLICI of the Year Award is presented to MuniStrategies LLC and Stonehenge Community Capital LLC for their investment in the Alabama Aircraft Support LLC (AAS) in Enterprise, Ala. AAS is a 65,000-square-foot hanger equipped with the latest technology to provide maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) services for civilian and military helicopters.

Project partners expect AAS will have a significant positive effect on the Enterprise area. Mark McCreery, managing director at MuniStrategies, said that Enterprise currently has a poverty rate near 30 percent. McCreery said AAS will help facilitate economic growth in the community by creating 160 construction jobs and an additional 130 high-quality permanent jobs that pay competitive wages of $20 to $26 per hour. AAS has also partnered with the Alabama Industrial Development Training (AIDT) agency to develop leadership and management training program to advance high-performing employees to managerial level positions.

The $12 million qualified equity investment (QEI) in AAS involved a combination of federal and state new markets tax credit (NMTC) equity in a "stacked" leveraged structure. The project also received a grant from the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Development (ADECA) and funds from the city of Enterprise and from Coffee County, Ala. U.S. Bancorp Community Development Corporation (USBCDC) served as the state and federal NMTC investor.

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