Commerce committee supports tax credits to keep Flux Marine in R.I.

PROVIDENCE – The R.I. Commerce Corp. Investment Committee voted unanimously on Wednesday afternoon to recommend a Qualified Jobs Incentive Tax Credit to electric outboard boat motor company Flux Marine Ltd. in an effort to keep the company from relocating to Connecticut.

The East Greenwich-based company, which was founded in 2018 and now has eight employees, is committed to creating 80 new full-time positions over the next four years if it gets the tax credits, said Jeff Miller, executive vice president of investments for the R.I. Commerce Corp.

If the company doesn’t get the tax credits, it may move to Connecticut, which has a similar program, Miller said. The company is considering a site in Bridgeport, Conn., and another location, said Siu-Li Khoe, vice president of business development at R.I. Commerce.

“They’re gearing up toward production of these motors,” Miller said. “It’s a competitive gap between ourselves and Connecticut. … We look forward to keeping them here.”

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Flux Marine said its electric boat motor is the “most powerful” and the “only ground-up, high performance, electric outboard design in the world,” according to R.I. Commerce.

Miller said Flux Marine “identified a site” in a large industrial center of Bristol for manufacturing.

The jobs will have an anticipated median annual salary of about $100,000, according to the company.

The R.I. Commerce Corp. Investment Committee said it’s recommending that the state provide tax credits to Flux Marine for up to 140 jobs.

The Qualified Jobs Incentive Tax Credit program compensates companies for up to $7,500 per job annually for as many as 10 years.

“They want to be here,” Miller said. “It’s an exciting program. It falls right into our blue economic strategy. And we’re the Ocean State. This is a pretty interesting deal.”

Committee member Michael F. McNally was enthusiastic about the tax credit request and Flux Marine.

“I love this one,” McNally said. “It’s innovative. And there’s no risk to the state. All we’re giving is a piece of income tax that the new employees would be giving to the state. … There’s zero risk.”

R.I. Commerce Corp. board member Vanessa Toledo-Vickers agreed.

“This is a great investment in jobs in the state,” Toledo-Vickers said. “It’s the southern part of the state, which is also great.”

Khoe said while the tax credit would lure Flux Marine to manufacture its zero-emission electric outboard boat motors in Rhode Island, it would later expand to locations in other states.

“They don’t want to be just in Rhode Island,” Khoe said. “They want these electrical motors to be everywhere. They’ve told me they’re continuing to talk to other states. Of course, we want their first manufacturing [site] to be in Rhode Island. … There’s a lot of folks in Rhode Island that would like to keep them here.”

The request for tax credits by Flux Marine will now go before the R.I. Commerce Corp. board of directors for final approval during its meeting set for 5 p.m. on March 28.

Marc Larocque is a PBN staff writer. Contact him at You may also follow him on Twitter @LaRockPBN.