Article By: Melody Simmons, Reporter, Baltimore Business Journal
San Francisco financial technology firm Stripe Inc. has picked Locust Point's McHenry Row as the inaugural office of a new offshoot, and plans to add 200 jobs at the location by the end of 2022.
The subsidiary, Helm Services Inc., will take 44,000 square feet of space in the development's Banner Building at 1215 E. Fort Ave., according to Baltimore's Board of Estimates agenda for Wednesday. Helm will provide technical support services to software users of Stripe, which was founded in 2010 and builds software and payment infrastructure for online transactions with a total workforce of 1,700 in 32 countries. Privately held Stripe has a reported valuation of $22.5 billion.
“We considered a number of cities across the country for Helm’s inaugural location and Baltimore stood out for its unique combination of world-class educational institutions, talented and diverse workforce and entrepreneurial spirit,” said Patrick Mahoney, president of Helm. “We look forward to forming strong ties with the community and contributing to its culture of excellence and innovation.”
The economic development win comes as city leaders continue to push back against a series of tweets over the weekend from President Donald Trump, who referred to Baltimore as "a disgusting, rat and rodent infested mess."
The Board of Estimates, the city's spending panel, will vote Wednesday on a $150,000 conditional loan to Helm for equipment purchases. Helm has also filed an application for a state loan of up to $600,000 from the Department of Commerce and the Maryland Economic Development Assistance Authority Fund, city documents show.
The loan will be repaid at a percentage with interest if the workforce drops below 200 between 2022 and 2029, documents show, while also noting that employment could eventually exceed the benchmark. The entire loan is expected to be repaid by March 31, 2030.
McHenry Row is a 20-acre mixed-use development by 28 Walker, owned by Mark Sapperstein. Other tenants in the Banner Building., a former Phillips Seafood manufacturing and distribution facility, include Comcast and the Maryland Automotive Insurance Fund. Under Armour previously had a call center in the building.
McHenry Row, as a whole, includes 500 residential units, a retail component anchored by Harris Teeter and a soon-to-open 128-key Courtyard by Marriott hotel in addition to office space.
Sapperstein was unavailable for comment Monday. Officials with the Baltimore Development Corp. could not be reached.