Congressman Tonko, a Democrat from the 20th district, toured Creatacor, Inc., a company that designs and fabricates displays for trade shows and other corporate events. The company based in Clifton Park employs 56, and this month will complete renovations to its warehouse and corporate offices.
Will Farmer, Vice President of Client Services at Creatator, says the company has expanded multiple times since it was founded in 1987, initially as a spinoff of GE Corporate’s exhibit operation, to a company that now provides services top brands including LEGO and Virgin Atlantic.
"We've been in business for about 27 years now, and this will be our fourth major expansion," said Farmer. So each time we've grown about 50 percent - so this time we're going from 60,000 square feet to 90,000 square feet. And time that we've grown we've really discovered it gives us a lot more capacity to take on additional work."
The company site includes a design studio, production and warehouse space, and corporate offices.
Congressman Tonko, a member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, said he often tours companies that he considers some of the “best kept secrets” in the Capital Region.
"And to come to a group at Creatacor and to understand the value they're bringing to businesses across the county and beyond is an imporant way to showcase the talent, the creative genius - in this case the artistic and technical merits that people bring to the equation - that spells success," said Tonko.
The Congressman visited with employees on the tour. The company’s leadership also had a chance to discuss overall business and challenges.
Will Farmer said most of the employees hired at Creatacor are local, but some have been brought in from different areas of the country.
"Our industry is a little bit more unique, so trying to get some of the sales staff that knows our industry can be a challenge," said Farmer. "But we do have designers as well, and there's a good crop of designers - graphic designers, 3D designers - that we can choose from, and we've had some very good success finding local people that can really help us out and help us grow."
Congressman Tonko said it’s important for lawmakers to understand the needs of businesses in their districts.
"These visits, we get to understand the needs of small business, the strength of small business, and how we can help them prosper via productivity and expansion of business, which then tethers itself into the district and allows us all to have a stronger sense for tomorrow," said Tonko.