Chocolate maker, Vosges Haut-Chocolat, invested $3 million to purchase the former Whole Foods bakery building in Chicago’s Logan Square, and convert it into its new corporate headquarters, test kitchen and manufacturing plant.
The building will also eventually house a chocolate museum, a retail store and a gastropub. State officials said for the first time, Vosges will fulfill CEO Katrina Markoff's "bean to bar" mission to trace the origins of its chocolate and craft it directly from the source - the cacao bean. The company estimates it will create 35 jobs.
“The chocolate temple will be much more than a physical address, it will be the beating heart of our endeavors and a hub of creativity for all who care to venture with us,” Katrina Markoff, CEO and founder of Vosges Haut-Chocolat said. “Working with the state, we will be able to move out of a leased facility and purchase a building that allows us to remain a home-grown Chicago business.”
As an incentive, Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity provided the firm with an Advantage Illinois Participation Loan, EDGE tax credits and ETIP training dollars worth a total of $1.7 million. In a participation loan, DCEO purchases a portion of the bank term loan at below market interest rate.
Governor Pat Quinn said; “Small business means big business. As our state continues to recover from the great recession, we must always do all we can to boost economic growth and job creation."