A West Coast software developer plans to open a location in downtown Rochester next week, creating 30 jobs over the next five years.
EmployeeChannel Inc. will open its Software Development Center for Excellence at Rochester Institute of Technology’s Center for Urban Entrepreneurship (CUE) on Franklin Street. The new facility will house the firm’s product development team, which will be focused on research, product management and development, DevOps and customer support.
The $2.4 million project is being aided by up to $500,000 through Empire State Development’s (ESD) Excelsior Jobs Program, in exchange for job creation. The County of Monroe and Greater Rochester Enterprise Inc. also provided incentives and assistance to attract the innovator to Rochester.
“The decision by EmployeeChannel, a West Coast-based software developer, to open an office in Rochester’s Downtown Innovation Zone is evidence that our strategic investment in downtown revitalization is working and, in sharing space with a top-tier university like RIT, adding to the innovation economy that is growing in the heart of Rochester and other city centers around the state,” ESD President, CEO and Commissioner Howard Zemsky said in a news release.
San Francisco-based EmployeeChannel was founded in 2015 and is a provider of a workforce communication application that allows employers to more effectively communicate with employees through cloud, mobile and artificial intelligence technologies.
“We are excited to participate in the Empire State Development program and to open our new center for software development in downtown Rochester,” said 1981 RIT graduate and EmployeeChannel Senior Vice President Mark Oney. “The proximity to world-class universities like RIT and the University of Rochester gives us access to an exceptional talent pool. ESD’s commitment to entrepreneurial development and financial incentives also make them a great partner for growing our company.”
Officials said the company had considered sites in Pennsylvania, Texas and Oregon before selecting New York State for its new site.
“We are thrilled to welcome Mark Oney and his company to Rochester,” RIT President David Munson said. “His decision to establish an office for EmployeeChannel here in this region is a great example of the kind of partnership with our alumni and our government and economic development partners at the state and local level that we would like to replicate over and over again.
“Companies such as EmployeeChannel are energizing the Downtown Innovation Zone and creating great job and career opportunities for our talented students and graduates,” Munson added.
Since 2016, CUE has worked to build wealth within the urban community by serving as a central resource for urban entrepreneurial programs and research. The center is located in the 47,000-square-foot former Rochester Savings Bank at 40 Franklin St. The building was a gift to RIT from Rochester Historic Ventures.
“I would like to welcome EmployeeChannel to our city and the CUE, and thank them for choosing Rochester,” Mayor Lovely Warren said.
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