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Spotlight on Government Contracting: NH’s $2B Industry

December 16th, 2014

New Hampshire Public Radio took an extensive look at government contracting on Monday, after spending a morning recently at a training seminar in Littleton with David Pease, program manager for the New Hampshire Procurement Technical Assistance Program.

NHPTAPNH PTAP (for short) is one of the free services we offer here at the Division of Economic Development and its mission is to assist small businesses in navigating the waters (and currents) of government contracting. It’s not exactly easy, but patience and persistance can pay off.

Chris Jensen, North Country correspondent for NHPR, produced this segment and if you are a small business, it’s well worth the  four-minute listen.* And then visit our NH PTAP website.

Lorna Colquhoun
Communications Director
NH Division of Economic Development

* Some examples of the kinds of services and products for which the government is contracting with New Hampshire businesses include: Bags and sacks; bakery products; ball and roller bearings; battery and power systems; biological studies; body armor; building rental; buoys; packaging materials; paint; paper shredders; paving; plaques; plumbing, heating, HVAC; precast concrete; property management … and that’s only part of the list!

High Liner Foods Opens US Headquarters in Portsmouth

December 15th, 2014
High Liner Foods cuts the red ribbon on its new corporate headquarters in Portsmouth.

High Liner Foods cuts the red ribbon on its new corporate headquarters in Portsmouth.

We headed out to Portsmouth on Friday to join the festivities as a company celebrated the opening of its US headquarters at the Pease International Tradeport.

High Liner Foods cut a red ribbon on its brand-new, state-of-the-art building, which will be home to 110 full-time employees, relocated from its former US headquarters in Danvers, Mass.

“The opening of this new facility is an important milestone for High Liner Foods,” said Keith Decker, president and chief operating officer. “The company has grown significantly over the last several years, particularly in the U.S., and the relocation and design of the new building will help us serve our customers better and attract and retain the top talent required for continued growth into the future.”

High Liner Foods are sold around the world and in North America, under brands including under the High Liner, Fisher Boy, Mirabel and Sea Cuisine.

HIGH LINER FOODS INCORPORATED - High Liner Foods' New U.S. HQ

High Liner Foods US Headquarters, Portsmouth

Its new facility features advanced communications technology, a cutting-edge culinary innovation center and research and development facility, an open workspace environment that encourages employees to collaborate and it was designed and built using sustainable building principles.

There is space for future expansion and is located only two miles away from the company’s Portsmouth manufacturing facility at 1 Highliner Ave., bringing management and the culinary team in closer proximity to the manufacturing site.

“With a design that reflects our updated branding, we believe the new building will inspire employees to continue fulfilling our recently formalized mission: to radically simplify selecting, preparing and enjoying seafood at its best,” Decker said.

High Liner Foods worked with the Division of Economic Development as it explored the move to New Hampshire.

“The property was really perfect for the relocation,” said Michael Bergeron, senior business development manager. “It’s close to the manufacturing facility and the cost of establishing the US headquarters was less expensive here than in Massachusetts.”

If you are keeping track, High Liner Foods is the latest company in the past few months to relocate its corportate headquarters from the Bay State to the New Hampshire Seacoast, joining Andover Healthcare and SMC Aerospace.

Lorna Colquhoun
Communications Director
NH Division of Economic Development

 

The Value of the Ex-Im Bank to NH Businesses

December 12th, 2014

Nathaniel Nelson is an international trade officer for the Office of International Commerce, which welcomed him aboard this fall. He takes a look at the discussion about the Export-Import Bank and how it works for New Hampshire businesses. -Ed.

With its charter set to expire sometime next spring, there is much discussion about the Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank) and its value to American businesses.

Recently, New Hampshire’s Office of International Commerce joined in the conversation by attending a roundtable discussion with US Sen. Kelly Ayotte and the Ex-Im Bank Chairman and President, Fred Hochberg. The roundtable discussion, hosted at Seaboard International Forest Products in Nashua, focused on the impact the Ex-Im Bank has had on helping New Hampshire businesses pursue and finance export opportunities.

The discussion highlighted the importance of reauthorizing the Ex-Im Bank’s charter and how Granite State businesses can make that happen.

The Ex-Im Bank is the export credit agency of the United States, providing export financing when there are gaps in what private lenders can provide or situations where lenders are unable, or unwilling, to accept credit risk. Businesses are able to obtain Ex-Im Bank products, such as working capital guarantees and export-credit insurance. Exporting is important to New Hampshire businesses. International trade helps them to reach new markets, increase sales and create jobs.

The long history of the Ex-Im Bank speaks to its value and importance. Over the last five years, Ex-Im Bank resources have supported 1.2 million American jobs, generated $2 billion in surplus for U.S. taxpayers and financed exports with a value exceeding $188 million.

Here in New Hampshire, the Ex-Im Bank has been a tremendous resource to our businesses; its authorizations translate into $375 million of total export value.

In the debate about the reauthorization of Ex-Im Bank, there has been great debate. Both sides have valid points.

At the recent roundtable, the consensus was that the Ex-Im Bank provides a great service, especially to small businesses.

For example, international sales at Boyle Energy Services and Technology in Concord have grown about 75 percent in the past few years, according to CEO Mike Boyle, in part because Ex-Im Bank had resources that made it possible.

Another business representative noted that his company’s access to Ex-Im Bank resources reached down the supply chain, helping to finance companies with which it works.

Sen. Ayotte called for the Ex-Im Bank to be reauthorized for a longer period and encouraged businesses and residents to let Congress know of its value.

The global market place is growing, evidenced by the United Nations’ projections that the global economy will grow more than 3 percent by 2017.

Now is the time for New Hampshire businesses to take advantage of the resources, like the Ex-Im Bank, that will launch them into global markets.

Nate

 

 

 

 Nathaniel Nelson
International Trade Officer
Office of International Commerce

Commissioner Rose Recognizes New Hampshire Businesses at Annual Meeting

December 11th, 2014

The 19th annual meeting of the New Hampshire Division of Economic Development is in the books and it was, all kinds of weather aside, a great opportunity to bring together our friend and partners on a topic important to us all: Keeping our economy strong and vibrant.

A tradition of our annual meetings is the presentation of awards by Commissioner Jeffrey Rose to recognize businesses that keep our economy robust.

Companies of the Year

Codet Corp.

DED-Codet

Stephane Lefevbre, left, and Vincent Audet, right, of Codet Corp., accept the Company of the Year Award from Department of Resources and Economic Development Commissioner Rose. Presented to the Colebrook company, which is headquarted in Coaticook, Que., the award recognizes Codet’s expansion and its commitment to New Hampshire. Earlier this year, announced it would build an 11,500-square-foot addition and hire 25 new employees. The company makes outdoor and protective apparel with the Big Bill brand. “Over 20 years ago, in 1992, the Department of Resources and Economic Development worked with the company on its move across the border into Colebrook, where it has been ever since, becoming one of the cornerstones of the local economy,” Rose said.

Comcast Corp.

DED-Comcast

Christopher K. Hodgdon, senior director for State Government Affairs at Comcast, left, accepts the Company of the Year award from Commissioner Rose. The award recognizes Comcast’s expansion in the state this year, in developing a call center in Hudson, which has the capacity for 600 employees. “This expansion represents significant in investment in New Hampshire by a company that has already proven to be a great neighbor and partner,” Rose said, noting that the company’s total employee investment was more than $150 million and its community investments totaled $2 million around the state.

Most Valuable Partner

Lindt & Sprüngli

DED-Lindt

Robert E. Michalski, vice president of operations for Lindt & Sprüngli in Straham, accepts the Most Valuable Partner Award from Commissioner Rose. The commissioner’s award recognizes the company for its support of the division and its commitment to New Hampshire. “In the midst of its growth, Lindt recognizes its need, and the needs of its neighbors, to have a strong workforce and is working with regional partners to help address future needs,” Rose said. “It is also generous in its support of our events and initiatives and when we need to showcase the best of our state, we can count on this company to help us.”

Rookie of the Year

HALO Maritime Defense Systems

DED-HALO

Paul Jensen, CEO of HALO Maritime Defense Systems in Newton, left, accepts the Rookie of the Year award from Commissioner  Rose. The award recognized HALO for its move to New Hampshire last year and its “confidence in the resources New Hampshire has to help it grow,” Rose said.

Teamwork Award

Granite State Hospitality

DED-Teamwork

Alex Ray, left, and Rusty McLear, of Granite State Hospitality, accept the Teamwork Award from Commissioner Rose. Ray and McLear were honored for their work in the redevelopment of the Hooksett Welcome Centers. “This year’s award recognizes the vision of two men and their love of New Hampshire,” Rose said. “It also represents a public-private partnership and enhanced services that will provide a first and last impression for travelers on their way to vacation destinations on the northbound side and when they depart for home, on the southbound side.”

Employer Recognition Award

UNH-UNH Dining Services

DED-UNH

Jon Plodzik, director of Dining Services at the University of New Hampshire, center, receives the Employer Recognition award from Jim Hinson, left, of the New Hampshire Department of Education- Vocational Rehabilitation, left and Commissioner Rose. The award recognizes UNH and its Dining Services for creating employment opportunities for people with disabilities.

Congratulations to all!

Lorna Colquhoun
Communications Director
NH Division of Economic Development

What Do the Patriots, the Bruins and New Hampshire Have in Common? Andover Healthcare

December 5th, 2014
Michael Bergeron, senior business development manager with the NH Division of Economic Development, left, joins Bill Bauld, CFO of Andover Healthcare and retail lead Mayra Lemus at the company’s new facility at the Pease International Tradeport.

Michael Bergeron, senior business development manager with the NH Division of Economic Development, left, joins Bill Bauld, CFO of Andover Healthcare and retail lead Mayra Lemus at the company’s new facility at the Pease International Tradeport.

Andover Healthcare Inc., a leading manufacturer of cohesive bandages and tapes for the healthcare, animal health and sports medicine industries, has purchased space at the Pease International Tradeport and will relocate its corporate headquarters from Salisbury, Mass. in 2015.

The company has hired six new employees and anticipates hiring 20 more, as well as relocating its corporate staff next year.

“‘Live Free and Prosper’ rings true for us,” said Andover Healthcare President Tom Murphy, who lives in New Hampshire. “We are thrilled to open a facility in New Hampshire.”

Murphy founded the company in the 1976, providing athletic tape to the Boston Bruins. A few years later, the New England Patriots’ trainers began using the tape and by the mid-1990s, Andover Health had grown as an industry leader in bandages for healthcare and animal care.

Two years ago the company expanded into the retail market with customers such as Walgreens and CVS.

“We recently received a large contract with Wal-Mart,” said Murphy, “and we needed to be in production quickly – the facility in Portsmouth is the perfect fit.”

The 52,000-square-foot Pease facility will produce elastic bandages for 3,500 Wal-Mart stores across the U.S.

“We are investing $700,000 in new equipment and we will also relocate our corporate offices to New Hampshire in 2015,” said CFO Bill Bauld. “Michael Bergeron of the New Hampshire Division of Economic Development was helpful to us in coordinating tax credits, financing options and job training programs.”

“On behalf of the people of New Hampshire, I am honored to welcome Andover Healthcare to the Granite State,” said Gov. Maggie Hassan. “Andover Healthcare’s relocation reinforces that our low-tax environment, responsive state government and high quality of life make New Hampshire as attractive a state for business as any in the country. Andover Healthcare’s presence in our state will help expand middle class opportunity and will keep our economy moving in the right direction.”

For more information on job openings, visit www.andoverhealthcare.com.

For information on expanding or relocating a business to New Hampshire, contact Michael Bergeron, senior business development manager for the New Hampshire Division of Economic Development, at 603-271-2591.

Welcome to New Hampshire!

Lorna Colquhoun
Communications Director
NH Division of Economic Development

Happy Thanksgiving from NHEconomy!

November 26th, 2014

Here comes Thanksgiving, on its way via a snow storm, which is a nice way to start the holiday season. It’s a nice time of year in New Hampshire.

It is also a busy time, a time to wrap up projects for the year, chart a course for the coming new year and somehow, find the time to make merry and enjoy the company of friends and family.

From all of us at the Division of Economic Development, we wish you a very Happy Thanksgiving … and a safe one, if you are traveling.

And, of course, being a champion of business and the economy, we have some business of our own to pass on.

DED-annual-meeting-socialFirst, our 19th annual meeting is coming up on Dec. 9. It’s a day when we bring together our colleagues from across the state and talk about the economy, some trends and what’s ahead. Thanks to sponsorship from our friends at Public Service of New Hampshire, this year’s event is at Southern New Hampshire University in Manchester and the theme is Live Free and Grow. Expect, as always, an interesting keynote speaker, some lively panel discussions and presentation of awards from Commissioner Rose. We’ve squeezed in time for lunch and socializing with colleagues.

Registration is free, but seating is limited (and those seats are going fast), so we need you to register. Take a moment and click over to the registration page and we will look forward to seeing you.

By the time our annual meeting rolls around, you may be already started on your Christmas list. A good day to get started is Small Business Saturday, coming up this Saturday.SmallBizSaturday

Our state abounds with small businesses, some of the 23 million in the country. Since 1982, small businesses have increased 49 percent and since 1990, they’ve created 8 million jobs. Of all U.S. sales, 54 percent happen at a small business.

Small businesses here are everything from manufacturers to Main Street merchants. They employ our friends and neighbors, they give our communities identities and make them a nice place to live. In terms of dollars and cents, if you spend $100 at a local business, roughly $68 stays in the community.

See you around town.

Lorna Colquhoun
Communications Director
NH Division of Economic Development

 

NH SBDC Turns 30! Join the Celebration!

November 13th, 2014

The New Hampshire Small Business Development Center celebrates 30 years of helping people turn their dream of opening a business into reality. State Director Mary Collins is our guest blogger today and she joins us at 3 pm next Wednesday (Nov. 19) on our radio show on WTPL-FM 107.7, New Hampshire Business Matters. Happy Anniversary and many more. – Ed.

There’s more to a business than bricks and mortar. Inside every door are people who took their dreams and passion and put them to work. For every single business in New Hampshire, big or small, there’s a story and who doesn’t love a good story?

SBDCThe New Hampshire Small Business Development Center turns 30 this month and we’ve been having a great time telling the stories of some of the thousands of people we’ve met since 1984, helping them to forge their vision, turning it into a business and success.

We’re also throwing a party, and you’re invited, but we’ll get to that in a minute.

NH SBDC is reaching out across the years to connect with clients, partners, staff, advisory board members, supporters and friends with one simple request – we want your face. Email your photos, along with your name, affiliation, and how you are/were connected with us to nh.sbdc@unh.edu or post it to our Facebook page, or tweet it @NHSBDC #nhsbdc30th.

For the past few weeks, we have been featuring these folks on our Facebook and Business Tips pages. All the photos received will become part of the Faces of SBDC slideshow at the upcoming anniversary party.

Set aside 5:30 to 8 pm next Thursday (Nov. 20) at Dyn (150 Dow St., Manchester) for the celebration, which will feature refreshments (including wines, craft beers and mead) and door prizes, many from our past and present clients. We’ll premiere our short film and Gov. Hassan has been invited.

Register here.

We couldn’t turn 30 with our anniversary sponsors: Northeast Utilities – PSNH; Business NH Magazine, TD Bank; UNH Peter T. Paul College of Business and Economics; Peter T. Paul, and Peter Paul Wines.  And we also thank our funding partners for 30 years:  U.S. Small Business Administration, the New Hampshire Department of Resources and Economic Development and the University of New Hampshire.

Mary Collins

State Director

NH Small Business Development Center

A Different Kind of Marketing Conference

November 10th, 2014

 

When you see “Dare. Play. Breakthrough.” on the signs promoting a business conference, you know you’re in for a different kind of experience.

The ‘A-Ha!’ Summit, which this agency helped launch back in 2009, is celebrating its sixth year of bringing the latest information in marketing and social media to New Hampshire professionals. This year, the conference is happening from 9 am to 4 pm, Thursday (Nov. 13) at Southern New Hampshire University in Manchester.

Lani and Allen Voivod, the co-owners of Epiphanies, Inc. in Gilford and co-founders of the Summit, say that they’re thrilled to showcase “top experts in email marketing, mobile marketing, digital media, Instagram for business, content creation, results-driven success coaching, community building, online visibility, and energetic technology.”

The mix, they say, has to do with delivering the right combination of cutting-edge stuff, plus topics that help people get better at the things they’re already doing, and sessions and activities that get people out of their comfort zones.

Definitely not your typical business event.

Of course, we’ve been to the conference every year, and there’s a great opportunity for networking, too, since it draws attendees from a wide range of industries. Business owners, entrepreneurs, marketing managers and staff, and nonprofits groups have all been represented in the past.

One new wrinkle in the event is their keynote speaker, Roderick Russell, and his bio is unusual, to say the least. He’s described as a “professional sword swallower, mentalist, hypnotist and  speaker, driven by an intense desire to explore the fringe of human experience. The author and host of Remarkably Human: The Art & Science of Being Remarkable, his work has been also featured on the Discovery Channel, the Travel Channel, CNN, MTV, Maxim Magazine, Ripley’s Believe It Or Not, and more.” Seems like the right guy to be giving a talk called “Dare to Be Remarkable.”

The other notable in the agenda is the “Online Domination” panel, which promises to cover “branding, responsive design, Internet performance, inbound marketing, search engine optimization, and trend-watching in business for 2015 and beyond.” And what conference would be complete without a free lunch and continental breakfast?

Lani and Allen tell us there are a few seats left, and the place to get tickets is at http://AhaSummit.com. Be sure to find us there and say hello!

Comcast Opens Hudson Call Center to Answer Customers Calling

October 20th, 2014
Dignitaries cut the ribbon at Comcast's new call center in Hudson.

Dignitaries cut the ribbon at Comcast’s new call center in Hudson.

 

A great big red ribbon was cut Friday morning in Hudson for the ceremonial opening of Comcast Cable’s brand new, state-of-the-art call center. Already, 122 people are employed here; another 65 are in training. Eventually, 600 people will be hired, providing support to 1.6 million customers in New Hampshire, Maine and eastern Massachusetts, including Cape Cod and the Islands.

With the new positions, Comcast will have more than 1,700 employees across the state, and more than 5,000 across its reach from Greater Boston.  The call center joins 12 offices in the Granite State and last year, its total employee investment, including payroll, payroll taxes, benefits, healthcare, training and tuition reimbursement, totaled more than $150 million. Comcast also contributed nearly $2 million in community investment across the Granite State.

“The opening of Comcast’s new facility is exciting for the Hudson community and the State of New Hampshire, creating hundreds of good jobs and representing why New Hampshire is as well positioned as any state to lead the country in innovative economic growth,” said Gov. Maggie Hassan.

Since Comcast announced its plans last May to develop the call center, the transformation of the 127,000-square-foot building has been dramatic. Light, bright and open, the center features the latest tools and technologies at the fingertips of its employees.

Company officials say locating the center in New Hampshire puts in the middle of an outstanding pool of talent.

“In addition to being a center for superior customer care, all employees in Hudson will be afforded continuous professional growth opportunities and we’ll add hundreds of new team members in the near future,” said Matthew Cohen, vice president of Customer Care Comcast’s Greater Boston Region. “This is an ideal location with a strong and talented labor market and we’re grateful to once again be growing in the Granite State.”

Congratulations Comcast!

Lorna Colquhoun
Communications Director
NH Division of Economic Development

 

Seeing the Light and Shining It in Hillsboro

October 10th, 2014

When it’s employee appreciation day and the company, one of the few remaining automotive light source manufacturers in the US, has a new partnership with Ford (as in the automaker), how do you celebrate?

At OSRAM SYLVANIA in Hillsboro, you donate a 2015 Ford F-150 with LED headlamps made at the plant to the local fire department.

Because the fire department depends on volunteer firefighters, many of whom work at the plant.

According to OSRAM, the Hillsboro Fire Department provides fire protection and emergency medical services to a community that covers about 42 square miles, with a population of about 6,000. Last year, it responded to around 1,000 calls.

The new F-150 is equipped with a full LED forward lighting system, a technology made possible by OSRAM, Tier 1 supplier Flex-N-Gate and DBM Reflex. No other light-duty pickup truck on the road today has LED headlamps.

Cheryl Blackwood and Hillsboro firefighters

Cheryl Blackwood and Hillsboro firefighters

“Hillsboro counts on the dedicated men and women of our fire department to protect us from harm’s way,” said Cheryl Blackwood, Hillsboro plant manager, “and now they can count on our innovative lighting system to help keep them safe on the roads. We hope Hillsboro residents will be proud to see their local heroes driving around town in the all-new F-150 with the beautiful LED headlight system designed and assembled right here.”

Officials say the new partnership with Ford has enabled OSRAM to make significant investments in the New Hampshire plant and to hire and train new employees.

Great story, OSRAM … thanks for sharing.

Lorna Colquhoun
Communications Director
Division of Economic Development


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