Surface Dynamics receives tax freeze, will build $5 million facility

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Medical device coating company Surface Dynamics has received a five-year tax freeze from Bartlett for a $5 million facility that will employ 41.

The company is finalizing a lease of a 14,500-square-foot facility in the Axel Business Park Subdivision at 3110 Stage Post, according to its payment-in-lieu-of-taxes request.

It will begin $200,000 in improvements to the space once the deal is completed but company officials believe it should begin shipping finished products by the beginning of June.

Surface Dynamics will focus on applying a plasma spray to medical implants for hips and knees. The coating will help promote bone growth into implants.

The company’s target customers are manufacturers that make orthopedic, spinal or dental implants such as Smith & Nephew, Wright Medical or Medtronic. Its PILOT application said it has a letter of intent for services from a local company but did not specify which one.

“We chose the Memphis area because of the concentration of medical device companies and its proximity to customers in other geographies,” said Surface Dynamics managing director Roy Smith.

The northeast corner of Shelby County has 26 different biotechnology, or “life sciences,” companies, according to Clay Banks, director of economic development at the Bartlett Area Chamber of Commerce. He said these businesses run the gamut from medical-device makers to pharmaceutical distributors.

“(Surface Dynamics) will be a good, complementary business to the other medical device manufacturers here,” Banks said. “We’re also excited about the good wages medical device companies bring with them.”

The median wage of a Surface Dynamics employee will be $51,063 with benefits included, according to its PILOT application. The 41 employees will work in either sales, administration or in light manufacturing.

Surface Dynamics is owned by a small group of Italian investors, called Centara Srl, according to its application. That group owns four companies all specializing in coating either medical devices, airplane parts or power generators.

The companies collectively employ 250 people globally and have annual revenues of more than $70.7 million.

— Toby Sells: 529-2742

Surface Dynamics

In five years, the company says it will have 56 employees, and $2.8 million will be added to Bartlett payroll

Its plasma spray includes titanium powder, which gives bones a porous surface to grow into

Roughly 5,000 work in biotech in northeast Shelby County

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