Wooed by tax exemption, plans for vehicle charging stations, National Scooter Co. set to roll into Pflugerville
National Scooter Co., a year-old startup from Seattle, said Thursday it is moving its headquarters to Pflugerville, where it plans to build an assembly plant to produce electric and gasoline-powered scooters and other vehicles.
The company, which will move into a 10,000square-foot building in the Springbrook II Business Park, expects to hire more than 100 employees within three years.
It plans to open its business operations by Aug. 1 and begin assembling scooters and other vehicles by next spring. It also plans to open a retail store in the area, to be called Austin Electric Vehicles.
CEO Greg James said the company might expand into a larger 60,000-square-foot plant at another location in Pflugerville within 18 months.
The Austin area has been on a winning streak this year with corporate relocations and expansions. The list includes Facebook Inc., which has opened an Austin development office, and Hanger Orthopedic Group Inc., which is moving its headquarters from Bethesda, Md., to Austin.
National Scooter will receive $235,000 in incentives from the Pflugerville Community Development Corp. Under the terms of the incentives agreement, the company must employ at least 62 people within two years and operate in Pflugerville for five years.
The company also received a triple free-port exemption, which allows it to avoid paying personal property tax on scooter components that are assembled and shipped outside the area within 175 days. The triple free-port refers to an exemption from city, county and school district taxes.
James said the exemption was an important factor in the company’s location decision. So were Austin Energy’s plans to begin installing electric vehicle battery-charging stations throughout Austin in coming months.
“We wanted to come to a community that was already several steps ahead of the game,” said James, who added that the investment in the project could reach $4 million.
The company said it imports vehicles from Taiwan and China and sells them under the National and Twist and Go brands.
James said his company aims to sell to urban professionals, students and others looking for low-cost, energy-efficient transportation suitable for short commutes.