Small Business

Was HIP program enough?: Candidates spar over impact of Daniels' health reformsRestricted Content

October 27, 2008
J.K. Wall
Just how big of a deal was the Healthy Indiana Plan? That seems to be the key question dividing Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels and his Democratic challenger, Jill Long Thompson, in their competing plans over health care reform. Daniels' campaign for re-election points to his administration's ongoing rollout of the Healthy Indiana Plan as his entire plan for health care reform in his second term. The plan, which uses cigarette tax revenue to offer health insurance and health savings accounts...
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No perfect fit for Main Street: Small-business owners fall on both sides of political lineRestricted Content

October 27, 2008
Whitney Lee
Joe the Plumber has been getting plenty of attention in recent weeks, but what about Kimberly the Merchant or John the Manufacturer? For all the talk about whether this year's presidential candidates favor Wall Street or Main Street, there's little discussion of the fact that neither Democrat Barack Obama nor Republican John McCain may be perfect for all small-business owners. Indianapolis manufacturing firm owner John Raine is backing McCain because of his stance on taxes and labor unions. Local shop...
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NOTIONS: Lessons learned from the candidates' communicationsRestricted Content

October 27, 2008
Bruce Hetrick
Have I told you about my e-mail from Sarah Palin? Did you know that Obama campaign manager David Plouffe briefs me on campaign strategy? I've let slip, haven't I, that Bill Clinton invited me to his place to munch on potato chips and watch Hillary's televised debate? I receive streaming video from Gov. Mitch Daniels letting me look in on campaign stops statewide. His opponent, Jill Long Thompson, connects via Facebook. And at 3 a.m. one Saturday, Barack Obama texted...
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Entrepreneurs say businesses must act quickly to survive recessionRestricted Content

October 20, 2008
Peter Schnitzler
Indiana's most seasoned entrepreneurs aren't standing idly by as the nation slides into what many economists believe will be the deepest recession since the early 1980s.
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More small businesses allowed to jump in pools: Law lets employers join together for cheaper ratesRestricted Content

October 13, 2008
Scott Olson
Small businesses in Indiana stung by rising health care costs now can band together to broker better deals from insurance providers. The rule from the Indiana Department of Insurance took effect in late August and is the final piece of a 2007 health care expansion state lawmakers financed with a 44-cent increase in the cigarette tax. The pooling program is open to businesses with two to 50 employees and is meant to give them strength in numbers so, in essence,...
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EDITORIAL: Lilly looks forward with ImClone deal: CEO Lechleiter taking bold stepsRestricted Content

October 13, 2008
Lilly looks forward with ImClone deal CEO Lechleiter taking bold steps It's premature to pass judgment on Eli Lilly and Co.'s $6.5 billion plan to acquire biotech firm ImClone Systems Inc., but the giant deal is one more sign that relatively new CEO John Lechleiter isn't afraid to make bold moves on Lilly's behalf. The local drugmaker agreed Oct. 6 to pay $70 a share for New York-based ImClone, maker of blockbuster cancer drug Erbitux, outbidding an earlier offer of...
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Creativity pays off for firms: Business owners delay projects, seek alternate funding sourcesRestricted Content

September 29, 2008
Sam Stall
Large Wall Street firms with a taste for bad debt aren't the only institutions weathering a financial storm these days. In a classic case of trickle-down bad news, small businesses are suffering as well. But instead of facing a maelstrom, firms seeking expansion funds and entrepreneurs looking for startup cash are enduring a drought. Access to capital has dried up as spooked banks relentlessly tighten their loan requirements. That translates into greater scrutiny of business plans, bigger demands for collateral...
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EYE ON THE PIE: What really drives Hoosier economy?Restricted Content

September 15, 2008
Morton Marcus
I enjoy the propaganda of government agencies pleading the causes of special interests. This is the opening sentence of our state profile prepared by the U.S. Small Business Administration's Office of Advocacy: "Small businesses are the heart of Indiana's economy." Frequently, we hear that farming is the beating heart of our economy. Others claim the thumping sound we hear is that of manufacturing. Teachers tell us the economy is only as steady as its educational footing. Steel has a claim...
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IT firm rakes in VC cash: Interactions Corp. has raised $35M since 2002 inception

September 15, 2008
Peter Schnitzler

A fast-growing Carmel startup is using a blend of innovative software and human guides to answer questions over the phone. The company could have located on either coast, but instead chose Carmel's Clay Terrace. And the company, Interactions Corp., has raised more than twice as much money as ChaCha Search Inc., a higher-profile startup in a similar business that's also housed in Clay Terrace.


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Commentary: Can we Bank on Indianapolis?Restricted Content

September 15, 2008
Tawn Parent
Whoa. Those figures, based on national averages from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., don't paint a pretty picture. People without bank accounts tend to keep cash at home or in their pockets, which increases the likelihood of crime. They create a market in which predatory lenders can thrive. They fail to reach their full potential, and so do the cities where they live. We have a problem. Now what can we do about it? We could take a cue from...
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Commentary: Indiana law chases away talentRestricted Content

September 8, 2008
Mickey Maurer
The Wellness Community of Central Indiana was established in 1995 as a not-for-profit organization to provide free support, education and hope to individuals and families affected by cancer. At The Wellness Community, cancer patients can share experiences and lend one another encouragement informally or through programs facilitated by professional counselors. The Wellness Community also provides a haven to grieve together in those instances when cancer is the ultimate victor. Today, the folks at The Wellness Community are grieving over a...
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Cautious contractors warm to Lilly-Covance deal: Drugmaker works to assuage fears of some local researchers worried they might lose lucrative workRestricted Content

August 25, 2008
J.K. Wall
When Eli Lilly and Co. announced Aug. 6 that it would more than double the amount of research and development work it outsources to Covance Inc., Dr. Alfonso Alanis got nervous. The CEO of contract researcher Anaclim LLC worried that more work for Covance would mean less work for local firms that provide drug development services to Lilly. Executives at other local firms, who asked not to be named because of confidentiality agreements with Lilly, also have fretted that their...
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Creating opportunities in tough times: Tightening economy requires 'patchworking' sources of incomeRestricted Content

August 11, 2008
Della Pacheco
Women aren't leaving the work force to stay home with their kids-they're being forced out in equal numbers with men. That's the word from "Equality in Job Loss: Women are Increasingly Vulnerable to Layoffs During Recessions," a congressional report released July 21. Often women who face job losses decide to forego the job hunt and opt instead for selfemployment, the report said. Might this job downturn trigger a boom in entrepreneurship for women? Not if they don't already have the...
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ECONOMIC ANALYSIS: State's new mortgage law is regulation gone awryRestricted Content

July 28, 2008
Mike Hicks
Indiana is known as a state possessed of thoughtful and minimalist regulatory constraint of business. That's why a littleknown law enacted in 2007, which further regulates mortgage brokers, should come as a shock to many Hoosiers. As of July 1, when the law became effective, roughly 600 Indiana mortgage brokers (perhaps 1/10th of 1 percent of all small businesses in the state) were out of compliance. When a one-month extension granted by Secretary of State Todd Rokita expires next month,...
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Need something? They'll trade you: Industry consolidation is remaking bartering terrainRestricted Content

June 30, 2008
Jennifer Whitson
Marketing firm owner Lorraine Ball knows how to promote a business-a valuable commodity among cashstrapped entrepreneurs looking to bolster their bottom lines. So it's little wonder that she is able to trade her expertise for services she needs, whether it's help with an online video or time with a personal trainer. Ball is among a growing group of small-business owners embracing the age-old barter system, methaphorically scratching one another's backs to save on cash and credit. Although Ball prefers to...
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Commentary: Wishing Nat City a speedy recoveryRestricted Content

June 30, 2008
Mickey Maurer
On June 19, The New York Times business section led with an article titled, "Regional Banks are Rocked." The accompanying graphic indicated that National City Bank lost 86 percent of its market value since the beginning of this year. No wonder. The news has not been good. On June 10, Peter Raskind, chairman and CEO of National City, acknowledged publicly that on Feb. 5, the bank had been placed under a memorandum of understanding by the comptroller of the currency....
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Local tree-care firms respond to rash of storms: Forestry specialists and arborists work 14-hour days to keep up with sky-high demand in central IndianaRestricted Content

June 23, 2008
Anthony Schoettle
If there's a silver lining to high winds and torrential rain, it can be found in the bank accounts of companies called upon to clean up the mess. For the dozens of tree cutting, trimming and hauling firms that fill up seven pages in the local Yellow Pages, the storms of late spring came at just the right time. "We didn't get one call for three weeks prior to the storms hitting," said Russell Goodman, owner of locally based All...
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Retail survivor: resale: Consignment, thrift shops doing well despite nation's economic slowdownRestricted Content

May 26, 2008
Jennifer Whitson
As gas prices approach $4 a gallon and economic growth grinds to a standstill, many retail shops are feeling the pain. Consumers who don't have as much disposable income are cutting back on clothing and accessories purchases. The University of Michigan's consumer sentiment index dropped to its lowest level in 26 years last month, and several reports find that consumers will likely be spending their so-called economic stimulus payments on bills, not shopping sprees. But one retail category already is...
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Crime-scene cleanup company eases burden of trauma victimsRestricted Content

May 19, 2008
Jennifer Whitson
On any given day, employees of Bio-Trauma 911 Inc. could be dealing with everything from the mess left by a decomposing body to a home that's been declared a biohazard. What may sound like a scene out of "CSI" is in fact a day at the office for the seven-person crime-scene cleanup company housed in unassuming offices in a strip center on East 56th Street at Interstate 465.
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Symphony Bank results keep hitting sour notes: CEO hopes to succeed by taking bank 'to the people'Restricted Content

May 19, 2008
Cory Schouten
Symphony Bank's palatial branch along East 96th Street-outfitted with a copper roof, towering domed ceiling and heated parking lot-was designed to telegraph wealth and stability. But instead, the $5 million Taj Mahal became the most prominent symbol of the bank's excesses and one reason the startup has lost money every year since its founding in June 2005. The bank, which has no other branches, has torn through two management teams and piled up annual losses of $2 million or more...
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Commentary: Earl Harris was a classic mentorRestricted Content

May 19, 2008
Mickey Maurer
They say you should live such a long life that, when you die, you will have no friends left to attend your funeral. Last month, Earl Harris passed away at the age of 90 and he went one better. At his request, he had no funeral at all. The only mark of his passing was a short obituary in The Indianapolis Star undoubtedly paid for by his family as per Starowner Gannett Co.'s policy. Permit me to add a little...
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Companies prepare for tougher breach law: Writer of security bill wanted more protectionsRestricted Content

May 12, 2008
Kristin Mcfarland
Imagine a busy local bank that signs several new accounts weekly. With each new customer, the bank receives that person's Social Security number, home and business addresses, and entire financial history. But what if a computer containing all that personal information-so useful for identity theft-is stolen from the building? Should the company notify its customers of the possible danger or hope the information itself is safe and keep quiet to avoid scandal? To answer those questions, the Indiana General Assembly...
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Angels invest where others fear to tread: Wealthy entrepreneurs join forces to create HALO Capital GroupRestricted Content

May 5, 2008
Peter Schnitzler
Some high-tech companies are so risky that even venture capitalists quiver. That's when they turn to angels, who aren't afraid to fly to the rescue of cash-strapped innovators with chancy yet possibly lucrative ideas. Last year, two dozen of central Indiana's most successful business veterans decided to intercede on behalf of Hoosier entrepreneurs. They formed HALO Capital Group, a network of angel investors who seek to speculate on promising Indiana startups. Every other month, the HALO group meets at a...
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Biz cards get creative: Smaller firms turning to bolder graphics to stand outRestricted Content

April 28, 2008
Jennifer Whitson
In the face of tough economic times, many small businesses are cutting back on advertising and canceling direct mailings as they tighten their financial belts. But some are still looking to stand out by jazzing up a basic: business cards. That's good news for local graphic design firms that specialize in business-card customization-an industry that generates an estimated $1.2 billion each year nationally. "Business has improved in this economic climate because creative cards are a cheap marketing tool," said Don...
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Housing slump not all bad news: Slow residential market boosts some small businessesRestricted Content

April 28, 2008
Jennifer Whitson
Many homeowners watching the housing market are fretting about their property values as for-sale signs linger, foreclosure postings dot neighborhoods and credit is harder to come by. But the housing turmoil is actually helping some local businesses-particularly those specializing in marketing properties and helping to sell them. "There are positives and negatives to the housing slump," said Brian Mayo, owner of Life Homes Inc., an Indianapolis-based property-sales and -management company started in 2005. "Purely from our business's perspective, we're one...
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  1. I am a Lyft driver who is a licensed CDL professional driver. ALL Lyft drivers take pride in providing quality service to the Indianapolis and surrounding areas, and we take the safety of our passengers and the public seriously.(passengers are required to put seat belts on when they get in our cars) We do go through background checks, driving records are checked as are the personal cars we drive, (these are OUR private cars we use) Unlike taxi cabs and their drivers Lyft (and yes Uber) provide passengers with a clean car inside and out, a friendly and courteous driver, and who is dressed appropriately and is groomed appropriately. I go so far as to offer mints, candy and/or small bottle of water to the my customers. It's a mutual respect between driver and passenger. With Best Regards

  2. to be the big fish in the little pond of IRL midwest racin' when yer up against Racin' Gardner

  3. In the first sentance "As a resident of one of these new Carmel Apartments the issue the local governments need to discuss are build quality & price." need a way to edit

  4. As a resident of one of these new Carmel Apartments the issue the local governments need to discuss is build quality & price. First none of these places is worth $1100 for a one bedroom. Downtown Carmel or Keystone at the Crossing in Indy. It doesn't matter. All require you to get in your car to get just about anywhere you need to go. I'm in one of the Carmel apartments now where after just 2.5 short years one of the kitchen cabinet doors is crooked and lawn and property maintenance seems to be lacking my old Indianapolis apartment which cost $300 less. This is one of the new star apartments. As they keep building throughout the area "deals" will start popping up creating shoppers. If your property is falling apart after year 3 what will it look like after year 5 or 10??? Why would one stay here if they could move to a new Broad Ripple in 2 to 3 years or another part of the Far Northside?? The complexes aren't going to let the "poor" move in without local permission so that's not that problem, but it the occupancy rate drops suddenly because the "Young" people moved back to Indy then look out.

  5. Why are you so concerned about Ace hardware? I don't understand why anyone goes there! Every time ive gone in the past, they don't have what I need and I end up going to the big box stores. I understand the service aspect and that they try to be helpful but if they are going to survive I think they might need to carry more specialty parts.

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