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UNFI plans Rhode Island expansion

UNFI expansion includes a shared services center in its home state.

Rhode Island Gov. Gina M. Raimondo and the Rhode Island Commerce Corp. today announced that United Natural Foods Inc. (UNFI) intends to significantly expand its footprint in Rhode Island, with plans to hire 100 new full-time employees by the end of 2018 and a total of 150 new full-time employees by 2020.

"We look forward to expanding our presence in Rhode Island with the opening of our shared services center, which will enable us to drive greater efficiencies and improve the customer experience as we further simplify and standardize our supplier and customer interactions," said Steven L. Spinner, UNFI president, CEO and chairman of the board. "At UNFI, our people are our most valued asset, and we are committed to working with our associates to ensure a smooth transition as we position UNFI for continued growth." 

UNFI is working toward a long-term lease at a Providence metro-area site and anticipates investments in the property to accommodate the new employees. UNFI intends to apply for tax credits under the Qualified Jobs Incentive Act program.

"We've long been proud that UNFI calls Rhode Island home, and today we're pleased that it's decided to grow here," Raimondo said. "The business climate we've worked to foster over the past couple of years is one that's mutually beneficial for businesses and our residents, and we're careful to ensure that the opportunities we create pay off in both the short and long terms."

Based on third-party analysis, these 150 new jobs are projected to realize a projected net increase of $4.8 million in personal income, sales and corporate business tax revenues over a 12-year period. We can also expect an increase of $9.7 million in Rhode Island's annual GDP once all 150 hires are in place.

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