Consolidating admin ops in Fort Worth, Alcon asks for tax break

When M&A integration takes away in one place, it sometimes gives somewhere else. Witness Alcon, which is asking the city of Fort Worth, TX, for some tax breaks on a planned expansion that's expected to create 750 jobs over the next 7 years. The growth in Fort Worth will consolidate the new Novartis unit's finance services operations in one place, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports.

Alcon is working to integrate its Swiss parent company's Ciba Vision and Novartis Ophthalmic units. Already, the company has announced it will move 100 jobs from a Ciba Vision facility in Atlanta to the Fort Worth campus. The new finance services center there will handle work for Alcon's integrated North American operations.

Last week, Novartis CEO Joe Jimenez said he expected to see $350 million in annual cost savings by 2013 from integrating Alcon with Novartis' eye care businesses, rather than the $300 million previously predicted.

Alcon is asking the Fort Worth City Council to turn its campus into a reinvestment zone, granting a 10-year, 80% tax abatement on incremental property taxes produced by the new, $11 million project. The tax relief could save Alcon $490,000. The company also wants the city to waive various construction-related fees. Under the proposed deal, Novartis would add 400 employees by 2013 and another 350 by 2018, all with a median wage of $90,000.

- read the Star-Telegram story