Representatives from the company briefly described their hopes to Seabrook Planning Board members Tuesday night. They want to buy the 505,000-square-foot Poland Springs warehouse on Ledge Road, spend close to $40 million in renovations and improvements, bring their 270 Peabody-based employees to run it, then hire as many as 100 new staff members, they said.
Barnes and John Glynn, president of US Foods Boston division were at the Planning Board to announce their intent and to seek the board’s advice before officially filing for site plan review. Given the “tight window” they have to acquire the Poland Springs building and 80-acre site, and the need to complete extensive improvements before its lease runs out in Peabody, US Foods needs an organized planning process that moves swiftly, they said.
“We intend to do everything on our end to keep the project moving,” Barnes said.
Since it is within quick reach of Interstate 95, the Seabrook building would be an ideal place from which to distributes its tens of thousands of products to restaurants, hospitals, schools and government operation throughout eastern Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Maine, Glynn said.
One of the country’s largest food service distributors, US Foods has 24,000 employees nationwide, with 60 distribution centers in 37 states. With annual revenues of $21 billion, it is among the largest privately held corporations in the country, according to published reports.
With headquarters in Illinois, the company is owned and run by Clayton, Dubilier & Rice Inc. and Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co., two large private equity firms that acquired the company in 2007 for $7.1 billion.