Manufacturing & Technology

CHRIS KATTERJOHN Commentary: 'Rip' is just right for CICPRestricted Content

May 28, 2007
It's been 15 months since Central Indiana Corporate Partnership CEO Mark Miles wrote in these pages that he felt like Rip Van Winkle when he returned to the city after being away for 15 years. Miles has done anything but sleep since he got back. Neither has the CICP board of directors. That group should be congratulated for making an outstanding choice of a new leader and for taking bold steps forward. This seems to have been a perfect match...
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Techpoint honors Indiana companies, educators: Judges narrow 80 nominees to 13 Mira winnersRestricted Content

May 21, 2007
Peter Schnitzler
This year's recipients of Techpoint's Mira awards include some of the area's best-known technology startups as well as lower-profile firms that have racked up big achievements. On May 18, the technology trade group was scheduled to acknowledge the accomplishments of Hoosier entrepreneurs in information technology, life sciences, advanced manufacturing and education with its eighth annual gala at the Indiana Roof Ballroom downtown. "It's always good to recognize companies and give them a pat on the back, put them on the...
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Full Perspective Video Services Inc.: Marketing firm is one-stop shop Company stays agile thanks to logistics unitRestricted Content

May 21, 2007
Julie Young
After a stint in public accounting, Whetzel went to work for Fleming Packaging Co., a firm that duplicated and distributed videotapes. After taking some losses on a couple of projects, the owners of Fleming didn't see the potential for video duplication and distribution, so Whetzel and business partner Charlie Seldon bought the company in 1991. Doing the deal wasn't easy. "I borrowed from family, refinanced the house, and took everything out of savings," he said. "I was dead broke and...
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Welding school's custom curriculum gains notice: Institution counts on business-to-business contactsRestricted Content

May 21, 2007
Anthony Schoettle
Seeking to take advantage of a growing statewide welder shortage, the area's first school specializing in advanced welding opened this month. Photon School of Welding Inc. Director Charles Garinger and a silent partner have invested more than $300,000 to open the school at West 84th Street and Zionsville Road. The operation is financed through the founders' savings and a loan from National City Bank. It opened this month in a 6,000-squarefoot facility with a capacity of 52 welding booths. Many...
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Contamination reconsidered: Developers show more acceptance toward environmental trouble spots When property is scarce, mitigation becomes viableRestricted Content

May 21, 2007
Chris O\'malley
When property is scarce, mitigation becomes viable The plan to close Citizens Gas & Coke Utility's coke manufacturing plant this year has already brought a few inquires about its reuse potential. But perhaps the biggest impact of the foundry fuel-maker's demise will be stoking discussions over whether other environmentally scarred properties are ripe for redevelopment. Until recent years, many developers regarded any property with even a tinge of environmental contamination as if a parcel in Chernobyl. The coke plant "illustrates...
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Ex-Brightpoint officer points to higher-upsRestricted Content

May 21, 2007
Greg Andrews
John Delaney, a second-tier Brightpoint Inc. executive convicted of securities fraud last year, charges in a newly public letter that upper management was in on the scheme. The 2004 letter implicates former Chief Financial Officer Phil Bounsall, now executive vice president of locally based Walker Information.
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Ruined Brightpoint manager heading to trialRestricted Content

May 21, 2007
Greg Andrews
Four years after the Securities and Exchange Commission accused Harcharik of committing securities fraud at Brightpoint Inc., he finally has his day in court. A civil jury trial is scheduled to start May 21 in Manhattan. It could last as long as three weeks.
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Local manufacturer tops in laundry coin machinesRestricted Content

May 14, 2007
Jennifer Whitson
Standard Change-Makers employs 118 people who make 3,500 change machines each year for self-service laundries, self-service car washes and arcades nationwide. Local workers design, build and service change machines.
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Former sales rep alleges Ohio roofing firm overcharged: Tremco denies civil charges of unfair business practices in its work for Indiana school corporationsRestricted Content

May 7, 2007
Peter Schnitzler
A longtime sales representative for one of the roofing industry's largest manufacturers alleges his former employer defrauded Indiana public schools out of more than $1.5 million. Brennen Baker charges that the company, Beachwood, Ohio-based Tremco Inc., circumvented Indiana's public bidding laws for school projects; overcharged for its services; and billed for materials, services and equipment it never delivered. Baker was a Tremco sales rep for southwest and central Indiana from 1991 until January 2004. Baker, who later founded the Fishers-based...
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MICKEY MAURER Commentary: The classy dame is still classyRestricted Content

May 7, 2007
"Pat Miller is a classy dame." Michael S. Maurer, Indianapolis Star, Dec. 13, 2005 The above response to an Indianapolis Star reporter on the occasion of Pat Miller's resignation as secretary of commerce was meant with all sincerity to be complimentary but was morphed by Indianapolis Star columnist John Ketzenberger into a slur on the order of Don Imus or Howard Stern. The Star piled on with a letter to the editor from someone who does not even live in...
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VC expert: Businesses enjoy 'seller's market': In Q&A, private-equity veteran Scolnik discusses industry trendsRestricted Content

April 30, 2007
Peter Schnitzlerreporter
With $116.5 million in capital under management, Hammond Kennedy Whitney & Co. Inc. is Indiana's largest private equity firm focused on mergers and acquisitions. It regularly creates $5 million to $15 million deals to buy small and middle-market manufacturing companies with low risk of technical obsolescence. Founded in 1903, HKW maintains its headquarters in New York, but the bulk of its operations and activities are in Indiana. Its portfolio includes the Indianapolis-based centrifuge-maker CentraSep Technologies and corrugated sheet manufacturer Flutes...
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Entrepreneur's fortune cookie biz grows by breaking traditionRestricted Content

April 30, 2007
Anthony Schoettle
Fulfilling a wish list was how Mike Fry came to found Indianapolis-based Fancy Fortune Cookies, by all accounts the only non-Asian-owned fortune cookie operation in North America. Fry started Fancy Fortune Cookies near Fort Wayne in 1989. He moved the company to Indianapolis in 1992.
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Pension changes fill state's VC coffer: Indiana Investment Fund has $155 million to pour into Hoosier companiesRestricted Content

April 30, 2007
Peter Schnitzler
The diversification of the state's two enormous public pension funds into private equity is transforming Indiana's venture capital sector. And their $155 million Indiana Investment Fund is the largest factor in the equation. If it's successful, the Indiana Public Employees' Retirement Fund and the Indiana State Teachers' Retirement Fund will save Hoosiers untold millions of dollars and help launch a host of new high-tech companies. If it's not, taxpayers will one day have to foot the bill. Indiana State Budget...
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ECONOMIC ANALYSIS: State's growth in incomes is still lagging the nation'sRestricted Content

April 23, 2007
Patrick Barkey
It was 1980 when then-presidential candidate Ronald Reagan asked audiences whether they were better off than four years earlier. It was smart politics-1980 was a recession year. But politics aside, it's always a relevant question. For if the economy is not growing the pie that we all share, then those who manage it, not to mention those in political leadership roles, have cause for concern. But how do we answer such a question? With the due date for tax filings...
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PROFILE: Williams Beck & Hess Inc.: Demand fueled growing pains When quality suffered, Camby firm slowed down to work out the kinksRestricted Content

April 16, 2007
Julie Young
Williams Beck & Hess Inc. Demand fueled growing pains When quality suffered, Camby firm slowed down to work out the kinks At 24, Harry Beals turned down a job working for a once-prominent petroleum tank company that had lost its luster following its founder's retirement. Four months later, he bought it. After 30 years under Beals' control, Williams Beck & Hess Inc. has grown into a business that generates nearly $1 million in revenue each year-not a bad return on...
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Relax, you better get used to it-it's only globalization: VOICES FROM THE INDUSTRYRestricted Content

April 16, 2007
Roger Schmenner
Globalization, like all sweeping economic trends, provokes a widespread disquiet. Specifically, we fear that somehow, if it continues unchecked, people in the United States will lose their high-paying jobs and we will devolve into a lowwage service economy. As China gains, we lose. To borrow a phrase from Thomas Friedman, they're frightened that the flattening of the world economy will flatten us. It is true that traditional manufacturing jobs are fewer now than before. And, lots of things are made...
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Overseas strategy has Hurco roaring back: Local manufacturer sells most of its products abroadRestricted Content

April 16, 2007
Anthony Schoettle
Even with the U.S. auto industry under pressure and the North American manufacturing market experiencing relatively slow expansion, Indianapolis-based Hurco Cos. Inc. is on a tear. The maker of metal- and machine-cutting tools and software has stayed ahead of the curve by growing aggressively overseas while keeping a lid on expansion costs. That double feat is easier said than done, said Ananth Iyer, professor of operations management at Purdue University and director of the Dauch Center for the Management of...
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ECONOMIC ANALYSIS: Jobs news is negative however you slice itRestricted Content

April 9, 2007
Patrick Barkey
What's the news on Indiana employment? Odd as it might seem, that phrase is almost a contradiction in terms. For while we do receive very timely, detailed information on how many jobs are carried on Indiana employers' payrolls each month, the practical challenges in keeping close tabs on the latest zigs and zags in the 3 million-strong Hoosier labor force make the interpretation of the fresh data difficult. Only after the data have sat on the shelf for half a...
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Purdue professor developing weapon for AIDS battle: Lower-cost testing device could save money for more treatment in disease-ravaged Africa, other countriesRestricted Content

April 9, 2007
Scott Olson
The professor of cytomics-the study of cell systems-is leading an effort to develop a low-cost device that would help more Africans get tested for the deadly disease. His goal, bolstered by his Cytometry for Life not-for-profit, is to build thousands of units that can be delivered to third-world countries around the globe. Robinson has completed the prototype and returned in March from a weeklong trip to Nigeria, where he and fellow university researchers met with government and health care officials...
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Changes flowing at Delta; is sale next?Restricted Content

March 26, 2007
Anthony Schoettle
Amid sagging profits, locally based Delta Faucet Co. has parted ways with two of its top executives. And some analysts think Delta's parent corporation--tiring of its sagging performance--is considering selling the faucet manufacturer.
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Professor hits right note in guitar engineering class: Purdue course lets students build, test instrumentsRestricted Content

March 26, 2007
Scott Olson
Playing guitar seems much more alluring than building one-unless you're a member of the Instrument Manufacturing and Testing class at Purdue University. The course is the creation of Mark French, an assistant professor of mechanical engineering technology, who introduced it just last year. It is already striking a major chord with students. Eighteen are enrolled now, which is as many as the professor can handle, and the waiting list for next spring's session is full. French is teaching the class...
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VOICES FROM THE INDUSTRY: It's time we change those modular-home stereotypesRestricted Content

March 26, 2007
Don Altemeyer
Mention modular housing and the first image that comes to mind is probably a TV reporter standing in front of a devastated trailer park in Tornado Alley. The "double-wide" with the screened-in porch somewhere in Florida may offer a much more comforting image. Nonethe- Americans their first chance at homeownership by manufacturing houses in factories and shipping the prepackaged kits to home sites. The visionary homes featured open floor plans, modern appliances, lighting fixtures and mechanical equipment. Sears sold more...
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Once-hot cooler company's new owners trying to rejuvenate businessRestricted Content

March 26, 2007
Anthony Schoettle
After almost 60 profitable years that saw Elliott-Williams Co. install walk-in refrigerators and freezers in almost every Indiana school, hospital and hotel, the venerable firm was brought to its knees last year. But an unlikely savior, a new locally based venture capital firm, bought EW out of bankruptcy for $507,000, about the cost of 10 EW walk-ins.
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Auto-job slide acceleratingRestricted Content

March 19, 2007
Peter Schnitzler
Indiana's automotive manufacturing employment for the last decade peaked at 142,000 in 1999. Since then, the sector has shed 20,300 jobs-a staggering one-seventh of its total. Another 5,220 are slated to be cut soon. And there's no end in sight.
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MICKEY MAURER Commentary: Hoosiers, wake up to the worldRestricted Content

March 12, 2007
Don't rest the chopsticks on your food. Don't blow your nose during the meal and never pour the soy sauce on your rice. These and other tidbits of Japanese dining etiquette had to be digested before our first trade mission to Japan in 2005. That 74-person mission, led by Gov. Mitch Daniels, was the largest delegation of Indiana business leaders and state and local officials ever on foreign shores. Indiana is the No. 1 manufacturing state in the union. More...
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