(Submitted photo)
(Submitted photo)
Lofts Coffee Company and Roastery, a locally owned and operated business in Portsmouth, in collaboration with JobsOhio, Ohio Southeast Economic Development (OhioSE) and Scioto County Economic Development, Wednesday announced plans to invest $103,500 in machinery and equipment and building upgrades, creating two new jobs.

Established in 2014, Lofts Coffee Company and Roastery specializes in roasting small batch direct trade coffee, sourcing green coffee beans from global farmers in countries including Colombia, Kenya and Indonesia, where the coffee plant flourishes. Founder Terry Ockerman said a key to success for the company has been building sustainable, equitable and long-term relationships with partner farmers.

“It is our goal to develop an appreciation for the task of growing and processing exceptional beans to bring back to coffee lovers in Portsmouth, Ohio. To foster this relationship with farming partners, and to ensure we are bringing our customers the highest-quality product, we travel to origin regularly,” Ockerman said.

Ockerman oversees the roasting, packaging and shipping of all single origin coffees or customhouse blends. Lofts Coffee Company & Roastery go to market through retail, ecommerce and wholesale operations, and the company is committed to building a business that actively supports the local community.

"Our initial investment in Portsmouth started with converting a 100-year-old furniture store into 14 market-rate loft-style apartments,” Ockerman said. “Our coffee shop evolved to be an extension of our newly renovated residential project.”

Ockerman said since 2014, the Lofts Coffee Company has experienced steady growth locally.

“This investment will allow us to grow our online business locally and nationally. We strive to build a stronger community and create economic growth through manufacturing and new job opportunities,” he said. “We want Portsmouth, Ohio on the map of amenities such as a great cup of coffee and place to live.

“I appreciate the time and effort of the Scioto County Economic Development Department, Robert Horton, Mark Ward in collaboration with Jobs Ohio and Taylor Stepp at OhioSE for being proactive in helping us grow our business and other businesses in the community." 

The $103,500 investment will go toward new automated equipment, bagging systems and retrofitting additional square footage for manufacturing. JobsOhio and Ohio Southeast Economic Development (OhioSE) are providing a $25,000 Inclusion Grant for M&E and building costs.

“Lofts Coffee Company and Roastery is a staple in the Portsmouth community, and we are glad to have partnered with the company on its expansion,” said OhioSE President Mike Jacoby. “The JobsOhio Inclusion Grant was a tremendous tool to leverage additional investment that will fuel new efficiencies and growth for the company.”
 
The Scioto County Economic Development Department is pleased to have been a part of this project working with OhioSE and JobsOhio to acquire funding for the expansion and new growth of the Lofts Coffee & Roastery. “Terry Ockerman is an outstanding businessman in our community and works tirelessly to move the company into the future,” said Robert Horton Director of Scioto County Economic Development. 

JobsOhio is a private nonprofit economic development corporation designed to drive job creation and new capital investment in Ohio through business attraction, retention and expansion. The organization also works to seed talent production in its targeted industries and to attract talent to Ohio though Find Your Ohio. JobsOhio works with six regional partners across Ohio: Dayton Development Coalition, Ohio Southeast, One Columbus, REDI Cincinnati, Regional Growth Partnership and Team NEO. Learn more at www.jobsohio.com. Follow JobsOhio on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.
 
Ohio Southeast Economic Development (OhioSE) is the JobsOhio Network Partner for southern, eastern and southeastern Ohio, providing economic development work and resources in 25 rural counties; they are the newest and geographically the largest of the six regions across the state. OhioSE partners closely with regional development districts, local economic development offices, state agencies and other entities to expand, retain and attract businesses in the counties they serve. Learn more at OhioSE.com.