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February 6, 2018

Vets First Choice will build $20M corporate facility in Portland

Photo / Tim Greenway Benjamin Shaw, founder and CEO of Vets First Choice. The Portland-based company, founded in 2010, announced last fall a $223 million strategic investment to accelerate growth as an online pharmacy and prescription-management provider for veterinarians and their pet-owner clients. On Monday Maine Technology Institute announced that the Portland company would receive a $9 million grant as part of $24.5 million in MTI “Lightning Round” awards made this week that are financed by a $45 million bond approved by voters in June 2017.

Vets First Choice, a Portland company that provides technology-enabled care services for veterinary uses, will build a $20 million corporate facility in Portland.

The news was made public as part of a $9 million grant announced Monday by Maine Technology Institute.

The grant was part of $24.5 million in MTI “Lightning Round” awards made this week from the Maine Technology Asset Fund, which was financed by a $45 million bond approved by voters in June 2017. MTI manages the fund on behalf of the state.

Vets First Choice plans a corporate facility on the peninsula in Portland, according to MTI. The site, the location of which has not been identified, will include an automated fulfillment center, state-of-the-art specialty pharmacy, and a world-class science, technology, engineering and math center. It also promises to “create hundreds of high-quality jobs in Maine,” though the MTI press release did not specify how many.

Vets First Choice is based at 7 Custom House St. in Portland.

Separately, Vets First Choice has formed a strategic collaboration with the University of New England College of Pharmacy for residency, training and development programs. Founded in 2010, the company partners with veterinarians to create insight into gaps in patient care and offers professionalized proactive prescription management to drive client engagement and improve compliance.

The company has 800 employees, double that of a year ago. Through July 2017, it had raised $223 million, Mainebiz reported.

Vets First Choice and founder Benjamin Shaw was honored by Mainebiz in 2015, Shaw as a Next Award winner and, as a company, as one of the fastest growing companies in Maine.

Shaw also received a Governor’s Award for Business Excellence from the state in December 2017.

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