Office supply company lands loan for move to Moraine

An office supply company out of Findlay landed a loan to help it buy the former Staples on Dorothy Lane in Moraine.

FriendsOffice, an independent office supplies dealer, looks to be moving its local operation to the vacant former Staples store at 1927 W. Dorothy Lane. Schroeder Commercial Properties LLC, a real estate holding company also owned by FriendsOffice president and CEO Kenneth Schroeder, spent $950,000 to acquire the 20,500-square-foot building.

“The City was happy to assist and is thrilled to see the commercial facility become active again,” said Mike Davis, economic development director for Moraine, who helped the company line up financial assistance and regulatory approvals over the past six months.

Friends had previously acquired Salem Office Products and had been looking for space to consolidate, Davis said. FriendsOffice now has a location at 4604 Salem Ave. in Dayton among five others in Ohio and Pennsylvania, according to its website. DBJ research last fall put its local employment at 15.

The company is a dealer for office supplies, furniture, janitorial, print, copiers and promotional products. It serves primarily companies and school districts in Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Indiana, according to its website.

The state of Ohio is furnishing a loan from its Regional 166 Direct Loan program, which supports expansion of companies in the logistics industry. The company has in turn committed to retain 105 jobs and add another nine in the state, according to state documents.

Ohio Controlling Board approved a $285,000 loan to the company Monday to help finance the project. FriendsOffice will pay for $125,000 out of pocket with another $540,000 in financing coming from Huntington National Bank, according to state documents. The property will be leased to FriendsOffice’s operating entity, Friends Service Co.

Staples closed that store in late 2015, and the sale represents a big hit for the company, which purchased the real estate there for $3.8 million in 2007 and has held it through an LLC until now, according to county property records.

“Staples had been vacant for the past few years and though we did receive several inquiries over that time, most did not relate to an ‘active’ re-use,” Davis said of the property.

Messages seeking comment were left with the company. It’s the sixth largest local office equipment company, according to DBJ research.

Tristan Navera