February 19, 2013

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1-800 CONTACTS to Build New Facility in SL County

Press Release

February 19, 2013

1-800 CONTACTS is planning to expand in Utah and invest $59 million in a new facility, changes the company expects to bring 654 new jobs to Salt Lake County. The company has entered into an incentive agreement with the Governor’s Office of Economic Development, which is expected to bring more than $35 million in new state tax revenue and more than $455 million in new state wages over the lifetime of the agreement. These wages are expected to be at least 125 percent of Salt Lake County’s average annual wage including benefits.

“We are in a very large market, and we see a tremendous growth opportunity for our company,” said Brian Bethers, president of 1-800 CONTACTS. “We appreciate this partnership with the Governor’s Office of Economic Development, which will help us continue to grow and deliver our superior level of service and expanding product line to more customers. We have made our home in Utah since our founding and look forward to creating more jobs in our home state.”

1-800 CONTACTS is the largest seller of contact lenses in the United States. Founded in 1995, 1-800 CONTACTS launched Glasses.com in 2011. In 2012, WellPoint, Inc. acquired 1-800 CONTACTS.

“It is gratifying to watch Utah companies become world leaders in their fields, and when partnering with the state has helped make a contribution to their growth and ability to  remain in Utah, we know our business support systems are working the way they are intended ,” GOED executive director Spencer Eccles said.

The GOED Board of Directors has approved a post-performance Economic Development Tax Increment Financing refundable tax credit (EDTIF) of $8,801,310, or 25 percent of the new state revenue paid by the company over the 15 year life of the agreement.

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