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Westport-Based Bridgewater Nixes Move To Stamford

An aerial view of Bridgewater's campus in Westport.
An aerial view of Bridgewater's campus in Westport. Photo Credit: Wikipedia

STAMFORD, Conn. -- In a terse press release issued Friday afternoon, Westport-based hedge fund Bridgewater Associates said it was not moving its headquarters to Stamford afterall.

“After careful examination and reflection surrounding the challenges, time, energy, and resources needed to bring the proposed Stamford project to completion, we have decided not to proceed with the move. We are particularly thankful to Governor Malloy for doing his utmost to make this opportunity possible," the statement said. "We are now exploring our other options.”

The statement was issued by Prosek Partners, a public relations firm.

Mayor David Martin's Chief of Staff Michael Pollard said the city was disappointed with the new and maintained the city was still an attractive place for business, pointing to a this week's announcement that Vineyard Vines, a Stamford-based clothing retailer, will remain in the city. The state offered a $6 million loan to the company to help pay for a renovation at a new location in the city that will allow the company to hire as many as 200 employees over the next five years. Martin was out of town and unavailable for comment.

Pollard noted the proposed development had been announced two years ago and that the city is working to streamline the development process for all companies.

"Two years is a lot of time for someone to assess (a move)," he said adding that comment wasn't a criticism of the current planning and zoning process in the city.

He cited an example of the "hole in the ground" in the city's downtown as one where the city moved in to help the developer resolve issues to get a stalled project approved.

He's confident the city will continue to thrive.

"The City of Stamford is a strong city," he said.

Gov. Dannel Malloy's office issued a statement saying the state will continue to pursue aggressively jobs.

"For a long time, our state failed to compete for the kinds of good paying jobs with good benefits that will grow and sustain our economy," said Malloy's deputy press secretary in an email.  "Working as a partner with our business community, we can make sure that Connecticut businesses can do what we need them to do: grow good paying jobs here in Connecticut.  We will continue working with employers - both large and small - in our efforts to regain Connecticut's economic competitiveness."

In August 2012, Bridgewater Associates, a global investment firm based in Westport, had announced plans to relocate to Stamford. The move, however, would not take place for at least five years.

At the time, a company spokesman said Bridgewater's 1,200 employees were spread over five offices. It announced plans to build a $750 million campus in Stamford at the former site of Brewers Yacht Haven Boat Yard and consolidate its offices into one location.

Gov. Dannel Malloy also announced the state's intention to award Bridgewater Associates a $115 million grant to build the new headquarters in Stamford.

But the proposed 850,000-square foot facility had stalled since then as disagreements continued about the building's effect on Stamford's boatyards and harbor area, among other disputes, according to published reports.

Ray Dalio, the founder of Bridgewater Associates and a Greenwich resident, has a net worth of $12.5 billion, according to Forbes. That makes him the 28th-richest person in the United States and the 76th-richest person in the world, according to Forbes.

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