Delaware eyes series of incentives to keep Dow-DuPont anchored here

Delaware government and business officials are celebrating the decision by the DuPont Co. and Dow Chemical to locate the corporate headquarters of the agriculture company to be spun off after their planned merger in Wilmington.

The companies announced last month that Wilmington will be the home of the agriculture company’s CEO and key corporate support functions. Leadership of business lines and support functions, research and development, and sales and marketing will be based in Iowa and Indiana.

As part of the agreement, Gov. Jack Markell has vowed to work to reform Delaware’s tax code, including lifting annual caps on research and development tax credits and offering payroll tax credits.

Delaware economic development officials also are offering the company up to $9.6 million in grants, mostly in matching funds for capital expenditures.

Mark Turner, chairman of Delaware Business Roundtable, and Chip Rossi, chairman of Delaware State Chamber of Commerce, released a joint statement hailing the measure.

“Today’s announcement that DuPont will be establishing the headquarters for its agriculture company in Wilmington is great news for Delaware. We are very excited that both the new agriculture and specialty products companies will be headquartered in Wilmington, following the planned separation of Dow-DuPont into three separate companies.

“This announcement reinforces Delaware’s long-standing reputation as a business-friendly state, particularly since a number of states were competing to have these businesses located within their borders. We believe some of the factors contributing to this decision were the state’s attractive business climate, the skilled and highly educated workforce and the close and constructive working relationship between government, business, and higher education in our state.

“In terms of future job growth, DuPont’s recent announcement that the company is creating a process to evaluate requests by former employees to gain access to DuPont patent property is another sign of how maintaining DuPont in Delaware will foster the establishment of new entrepreneurial businesses and help create additional economic growth.

“We appreciate DuPont’s ongoing commitment to the state and the fact that the company and its thousands of employees will continue to be active in our community, including with civic and charitable organizations. This announcement is good news for Delaware, for all Delawareans and anyone connected with our state.

“In particular, we applaud the fact that Gov. Markell and his administration and our congressional delegation demonstrated exemplary leadership and collaboration in working together with DuPont and the business community to ensure that the company and its employees will remain a vital part of our economy and our communities.”

Dow-DuPont spinoffs

With the announcement of the intended agriculture company site structure, each headquarters location of the three intended independent, publicly traded companies now has been determined.

  • Agriculture Company (Wilmington): A leading global pureplay agriculture company that unites the seeds and crop-protection businesses from DuPont and Dow.
  • Material Science Company (Wilmington): A pureplay company consisting of Dow’s performance plastics, performance materials and chemicals, infrastructure solutions, consumer care and automotive solutions (excluding the Dow electronic materials business) operating segments, as well as DuPont’s performance materials segment.
  • Specialty Products Company (Midland, Mich.): A global specialty business focused on attractive secular-growth markets where innovative science capabilities offer a clear competitive advantage.

Prior to the intended separation into three independent companies, Dow-DuPont will be dual-headquartered in Wilmington and Midland.

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