ORANGE — A Stratford-based manufacturer of jet engine components is moving into the former Wallach Surgical Products building on Edison Road this spring.
Numet Machining Techniques is moving into 40,600 square feet of light industrial and office space at 235 Edison Road as part of a $7 million sale and lease deal, town officials and a commercial real estate broker said Friday.
A Manhattan-based real estate investment firm, TMC Properties, bought the building for $3.1 million and Numet signed a long-term lease on the property valued at $3.9 million, said Carl Russell, executive vice president of George J. Smith & Son Commercial & Investment Real Estate in Milford.
The building had been vacant for about 18 months, Russell said.
“Right now, given the current state of the economy, that amount of time is pretty typical,” he said. “We’re starting to see an uptick in activity: Since last summer, we’re getting more calls, more property visits, more interest in general.”
Russell’s observations replicate what Orange Economic Development Corp. Executive Director Paul Grimmer has seen in terms of the vacancy rate for similar light industrial properties in the past year. Vacancy rates have gone from 15 percent to the current level of 6.9 percent, Grimmer said.
“We’re definitely moving in the right direction,” Grimmer said.
Numet operates out of three facilities with a total 20,000 square feet in Stratford. Company officials estimate they will have fully completed the moved to Orange by the end of May.
The company has 30 employees and expects to hire six more by this June and expects to have 50 employees by the end of 2013.
“We have also started recruiting for experienced machinists to support our growth plans,” said Andrew Gale, Numet’s president and chief executive officer. “In a competitive market for these skilled workers, this facility will be a major recruiting tool as it is one of the nicest working environments in the entire region.”
Gale said Numet will also be purchasing more than $2 million in new equipment during the next year.