State officials last Friday announced NuHarbor Security, a software security company that plans to relocate to Colchester in August, will receive up to $300,000 to perform workforce training and encourage future growth.
The Vt. Department of Economic Development will facilitate the funding, starting with a $122,000 grant from the Vermont Training Program to support online learning and hands-on training for new and existing NuHarbor employees. The trainings will cover a variety of skill sets and software used for searching, monitoring and analyzing machine data for security uses, according to Gov. Phil Scott’s office, which announced the funding in a press release.
“These training and incentive programs support growth of new and existing Vermont businesses while expanding our workforce and helping Vermonters expand their careers,” Scott said in the press release. “Cybersecurity is an important sector and advancing the skills of employees at businesses like NuHarbor is critical to Vermont’s economic future.”
The rest of the funding comes via the Vermont Growth Incentive program, or VEGI, which offers performance-based incentives linked to job growth and capital investment. NuHarbor will receive up to $202,000 over the next nine years if it can meet and maintain annual performance performance targets; the value of each payment will be determined by the net revenue return generated for the state.
Until recently, the company had operated its headquarters out of Essex Jct. in addition to locations in Boston, New York and Washington, D.C. But NuHarbor moved to a new office space in Colchester this winter.
In a press release, NuHarbor Managing Director Justin Fimlaid said the state funding will help the company further expand its Vermont workforce.
“Cybersecurity is a moving target. Our employees need to stay up to date with current threats and data trends,” Fimlaid said in the news release. “Because of this, skills in other IT and tech jobs don’t always line up with the work we do. No matter their previous experience, we provide each new employee with at least three months of intensive training.”
Greg Morgan, chairman of the Essex Economic Development Commission, called NuHarbor the “real deal” and said he was saddened to see the company leave town after being unable to find a space that could accommodate its growth. The move was a lesson that Essex needs more office space suitable for software development, Morgan said.
“We’re short on that. There’s no question,” he said.
But Essex’s loss has been Colchester’s gain, as NuHarbor Security was recently recognized by Entrepreneur magazine as one of America’s best entrepreneurial companies, the only Vermont organization to make the list. In an interview with VtDigger, Fimlaid said NuHarbor expected to double last year’s revenues in 2019 and planned to add up to 40 new security engineer jobs in the next five years.
Kathi O’Reilly, Colchester’s director of economic development, said the town had been working with NuHarbor to help facilitate the move and supported its application for the state funding.
“Their expansion and investment in our community is key to our economic development efforts,” O’Reilly said. “We are thrilled that they are a member of our business community.”