Spectrum Brands Moving Headquarters To Middleton

Madison-based Spectrum Brands said it’s scrapping plans to move its headquarters to Florida and will instead head to Middleton.

The global consumer products company, previously known as Rayovac, will move its Madison headquarters, several North American divisional operations and its technology center to a more economical facility in Middleton, a Madison suburb, by the end of 2013.

More than 500 full-time employees will make the move to Middleton.

Spectrum said cost savings and a five-year, $4 million award from the state were reasons it shelved plans to move to Miramar, Fla., where its Russell Hobbs home appliance subsidiary is located.

Dave Lumley, CEO of Spectrum Brands Holdings, said that none of the jobs in Madison will be lost.

“We feel great about staying in Wisconsin,” Lumley said. “We are adding 60 to 70 professional jobs, or almost $6 million to $7 million of jobs that are coming from Florida, that are in Florida right now. And we’ve filled quite a few of them and we still have many good ones open in our businesses, so I think that’s the really the good news here.”

Spectrum Brands said its Middleton headquarters facility in the Discovery Springs area of Middleton will also be more energy-efficient. The location of the new facility is currently a cornfield on Deming Way, near Costco.

Lumley said a new building will provide a better place for the company to grow than its current home in Madison for the past 26 years.

“This building is pretty inefficient and it has a lot of pillars in it and it takes up a lot of space. So we’re able to move to a smaller, much more efficient building,” Lumley said.

Madison Mayor Paul Soglin was out of town Thursday and not commenting on the move, but he has asked city staff to research the cost difference between the Middleton facility and Spectrum’s present facility in Madison.

“I don’t think there were a lot of conversations with the city of Madison,” said Madison Alderman Mark Clear. “Certainly we have opportunities in both private property and city-owned property.”

Clear’s district includes the current Rayovac Drive location.

“From a city of Madison tax base perspective, it’s not so good because they’re going to be leaving quite a big building that we’re going to need to find a new tenant to fill, so that’ll be difficult,” Clear said.

Lumley said the city of Madison did not have an existing building that was big enough.

“It really came down to, did they have a building we could move into, or was there a building that was being constructed we could move into in the timeframe?” Lumley said.

The company, which changed its corporate name to Spectrum Brands from Rayovac in 2005, moved into the newly built Rayovac Drive facility in 1985 as its new headquarters, adjacent to its existing battery technology center, which was constructed in 1965.

In addition to its world headquarters in Madison, Spectrum has manufacturing plants in Fennimore, Wis., with 320 employees, and Portage, Wis., with 200 employees.