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Brooklyn eyewear manufacturer doubles its space at Industry City

TARA MONTONERI

Brooklyn’s leading manufacturer of eyewear, M Factory, is expanding its state-of-the-art production facility at Industry City, the 16-building, six million square-foot manufacturing and innovation campus located on the waterfront in Sunset Park, Brooklyn.

Last month, M Factory signed a lease to expand its Industry City space – located at 147 41st Street, 5th floor – from 12,500 s/f to more than 20,000 s/f.

Since arriving at Industry City in October 2016, M Factory has more than tripled its square footage and added more than 50 employees.

“M Factory has found the partnership with Industry City to be of immense value as we grow at such a rapid pace,” said Tara Montoneri, Managing Director at M Factory.

“We find talented local employees from the Innovation Lab and the consistent growth of the tenant community has allowed us to maintain the feeling of being in a family of makers that are striving to keep Brooklyn Made products thriving.”

“M Factory’s expansion is part of a growing trend at Industry City,” said Andrew Kimball, CEO of Industry City.

“Companies start with a small space and expand within the complex as they grow their business. We’re one of the only places in New York City able to provide tenants with this kind of flexibility. For startups and small businesses, that flexibility is a huge amenity.”

The majority of M Factory’s full-time employees live in Brooklyn and approximately one quarter are specifically from Sunset Park. In addition to the space expansion, the company continues to grow its workforce and is currently hiring for 5-10 new positions. The majority of M Factory’s workforce has been placed through Industry City’s Innovation Lab, a unique on-site workforce development center.

At Industry City, M Factory is surrounded by a vibrant ecosystem of fashion companies and manufacturers, including footwear design and production company ESTAS BRANDS, swimwear label and manufacturer Malia Mills, fashion jewelry company and producer Alexis Bittar, lighting manufacturers Roll & Hill, Juniper, and Rich Brilliant Willing, and a wide range of food manufacturers.

In total, the manufacturers based at Industry City comprise more than 1 million square feet of space and support more than 3000 jobs, representing the sector’s largest presence at the complex in decades.

The strategic redevelopment of Industry City — launched in 2013 by Belvedere Capital and Jamestown — has generated significant leasing activity and job creation.

Over the past five years, Industry City has invested over $400 million into the property and leased more than 3 million square feet of space. During this period, businesses based at the property have collectively grown by an average of 100 jobs per month, more than tripling from 1,900 jobs in 2013 to 7,500 jobs today.

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