Pie maker and tech company eligible for up to $8.1M in payroll rebates

Nova Scotia Business Inc. said Tuesday it will offer payroll rebates worth a total of $8.1 million to two companies.

The provincial Crown corporation said the Japanese information technology company NTT Data is eligible for up to $7 million in payroll rebates if it creates 500 new jobs at its Halifax operation over the next six years.

Kentville pie maker Apple Valley Foods Inc. is eligible for $1.15 million if it adds 80 jobs over the next five years.

A payroll rebate is a monetary incentive paid out yearly after a company achieves agreed-upon performance targets, such as creating a certain number of jobs.

Pies selling like hot cakes

Apple Valley president Jeff Sarsfield said the jobs will be added at the company's Caulkin Drive operation.

"We've had great growth over the last number of years and we still see that growing this year and into next," said Sarsfield.

He said the grant helps the company stay competitive in the North American market. The company is a subsidiary of Harlan Bakeries Inc. of Indiana. It is one of Canada's largest pie producers.

In 2014, Apple Valley received $3.5 million in assistance from the federal and provincial governments to help modernize its facilities. 

NTT Data 

The payroll rebate offered to NTT Data is not the first for the company. The Halifax operation was part of Keane Canada until it merged with NTT Data in 2011. Nova Scotia Business Inc. inked a payroll rebate with NTT in 2012 when it was still called Keane Canada.

A further extension offered incentives for hiring new graduates or new residents. The company operates from Barrington Street in downtown Halifax.

In a background statement on its operations, NTT Data said the Halifax location provides application services, which focus on the development, testing and support of business software applications.

The company said it also provides digital and cloud services where the focus is on the design, implementation and support of secure, world-class network and storage solutions for clients.

'About new job creation'

NSBI CEO Laurel Broten said payroll rebates are not used to subsidize existing jobs. She said they are used only to create new ones.

"It's always about new job creation. New jobs that could be created here or somewhere here or somewhere else. I want them created here. I think Nova Scotians want them created here," Broten said.

NTT Data applications services vice president Greg Foran said payroll rebates are part of the business case for the Halifax operation, which currently employs just under 800 people.

"There's other locations within our company that have similar centres that we compete with because of costs, the dollar, talent ... and this helps us compete internally and externally from the business," Foran said.

IBM deal was the largest

Late last month, Nova Scotia Business Inc. announced the largest payroll rebate in the province's history when it amended a payroll rebate to IBM, bringing the total value to $22.6 million.

Earlier in March, Global Spatial Technologies Solutions Inc. was offered a maximum of $1.14 million if it reaches a target of creating 42 new jobs.

The company will analyze marine data delivered from satellites.