DeCicco Family Markets
Brothers John and Christopher DeCicco and cousin Joseph DeCicco have owned and operated DeCicco’s Tuscan Market in Ardsley, New York since 2005. This market is one of the several grocery stores operated by members of their family throughout Westchester and Rockland counties. In 2010 the three partners entered into a 30-year lease agreement for space that formerly housed a Linens ‘N Things store that would allow them to expand their food preparation and manufacturing operations and open a new, larger retail location.
Although the landlord of the 37,500-square-foot space provided some leasehold improvements, the DeCiccos needed to secure significant financing for the remaining improvements and for the purchase of machinery and equipment. Improvements to electrical, plumbing and HVAC systems were required and new walls had to be constructed. Walk-in coolers; ovens; hot bars, and meat, deli and food cases had to be purchased. The plan was for 50 percent of the space to be dedicated to retail operations and 50 percent to food preparation and manufacturing to allow the owners to supply breads, pastries, dinners, soups, salads and pasta dishes to other DeCicco market locations.
“The Putnam County IDC and EDC enticed us with a lot of job incentives,” said company President John DeCicco. “Because we qualified as an Economic Development Zone project, we were able to also secure a HUD community renewal grant.”
The necessary funding was provided by Provident Bank and Empire State CDC. Provident Bank Vice President John Barbalaco worked with NYBDC Senior Vice President Thomas K. McHale on the project.
“The 504 loan to the DeCiccos financed improvements to leased space, which is a rarely used but eligible loan purpose,” said McHale. “The 504 program allowed the borrowers to obtain longer term financing than is typically afforded for leasehold improvements and keep their cash injection down to a minimum. These two benefits allowed the DeCiccos to preserve working capital to support jobs growth and the expansion of their business, which is critical in their industry.”
“The DeCiccos approached Provident Bank with a request for low down payment financing,” said John Barbalaco, commercial lender and vice president of Provident Bank. “Provident’s strong relationship with NYBDC triggered our recommendation to use the SBA 504 program.”
“Putnam County EDC and IDA connected us to all the right people,” John DeCicco said. “It was basically a seamless project, with great communication all along the way. NYBDC and Provident Bank provided major help in getting this project done.”
The new location, which opened in November 2010 and is four times larger than other DeCicco markets, employs more than 75. Baking for all the DeCicco stores now takes place there. The owners have shifted the focus away from food preparation somewhat to concentrate on baked goods. The DeCiccos are exceptionally pleased with the opportunities made possible by the new facility.