Its current Greenburgh location, where the headquarters has been for the past 13 years, employs roughly 300 office and research workers. With the move to White Plains, Danone North America would have 440 full-time employees and expects to add about 150 jobs over the next five years once renovation of the new HQ is completed.
“Many thanks to Danone for its continuing investment in Westchester,” Westchester County executive Robert P. Astorino said.
The common council of the city of White Plains unanimously approved a site plan and special permit submitted by Danone Foods Inc. to convert a previous multi-outlet retail location in downtown White Plains into the yogurt giant’s new headquarters. The renovation and construction plans involve building 109,000 square feet of office space, a 12,000-square-foot food laboratory, and an 8,276-square-foot employee cafeteria.
The company currently occupies approximately 75,000 square feet at its current Greenburgh headquarters. The full transition to White Plains is anticipated for the beginning of 2018 once renovation work is finished.
“It’s a corporation that has an astounding reputation, an outstanding history, and is locked squarely in the center of the healthy food and wellness movement,” White Plains Mayor Thomas Roach said at the common council meeting.
“We look forward to working with them in the future.”
Reason for relocation
Key factors in the relocation decision included a space to be able to update its offices to a more modern, flexible workplace that will fully leverage technology, enhance collaboration, and attract new talent to Danone North America.
“We prioritized efficient and flexible design solutions for the changing style of our workplace that we envision for our future,” said Dessislava Miteva, Danone’s chief people officer and VP of human resources.
“We want as much open space as possible to maintain the sense of community we currently have, to encourage informal and ad-hoc communication, and to ensure as much freedom and autonomy as possible in an energetic and exciting workplace.”
Relocating to a transit-accessible downtown location in an active community where employees would be “within walking distance to restaurants, shopping, and mass transit” were also important factors for the company, Miteva said.