By Molly Congdon
Arnoff Moving and Storage is moving from its Albany headquarters, marked by the historic statue of the Nipper dog, to a facility in Malta.
The company will inhabit Racemark International’s former floor mat manufacturing plant on Route 9, a 72,000-square-foot building not far from the GlobalFoundries computer chip manufacturing plant.
Company President Mike Arnoff said the company is ready to invest $11.6 million to construct a new global headquarters. All that is pending is town Planning Board approval.
“What makes Saratoga County the right location is quality of life for our employees,” he said. “Arnoff has a culture and we are very concerned with our employees. The property is a 40-acre site. It has a building on it that we can renovate and get moved into quickly.”
He said the company plans to create a campus-like setting that’s comfortable for employees and customers.
Arnoff is a 92-year-old, five-generation family business. It got started by moving sensitive fine art and antiques in the 1920s.
"At the time, wealthy families were traveling to Europe," Arnoff said. "They would get back from their trips and call my grandfather and say, 'Hey Lou, the ship is going to dock down in New York and we have some crates of items that we purchased, can you bring them to our home and unpack them?'"
The business began as a company capable of handling sensitive items and as time evolved Arnoff's father saw a niche in the lower Hudson Valley–with the development of IBM–in the late 1950s and transitioned to handling sensitive equipment. Now the company is a service business that provides executive and family moving and storage services.
The other half of the company is a global logistics business, which evolved out of its ability to service the semi-conductor industry, the pharmaceutical industry and many different types of manufacturers who have the need to move and relocate sensitive equipment in the U.S. and abroad.
"We have the ability to handle that type of work,"Arnoff said. "We design and custom build crating and packaging to meet the requirements for every country in the world. We have built a business based on trust."
The company continues to diversify, dealing with intricate rigging services, freight forwarding and climate controlled storage.
For the last 35 years, 991 Broadway in Albany's warehouse district was the company's address. It's more remembered for the massive 28 foot RCA dog, Nipper, who was a symbol for RCA.
Arnoff said the company will appear before the Planning Board this month.
"It will tell us if the town of Malta planning board will give us preliminary approval for what we want to do," Arnoff said. "Then we will have a better understanding of what they like and don't like about our concept plan."
"It's exciting for us to take our growing business and move it to a more sprawling site that can offer many more services to many more customers," he added.
There are plans to increase employment from 74 to 107 over a three-year period.
The Malta building was vacant when Applied Materials, a supplier to the massive GlobalFoundries semiconductor plant nearby, leased 17,000 square feet earlier in the year. Applied will remain in the building and Arnoff plans to add 20,000 square feet of space to expand it to 90,000 square feet.