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Archive for January, 2013

Economic Potpourri

Thursday, January 31st, 2013

All sorts of good, interesting and useful news is crossing our desk this week, so without further adieu:

Hats off to the Hannah Grimes Center over in Keene, which received the first Champion in Action award of 2013, presented by Citizens Bank and WMUR-TV, in the category of strengthening communities. The prize includes a $35,000 grant.

Hannah Grimes Center: Champion in Action

Hannah Grimes, for which the center is named, was born in 1776 in Keene and lived on a farm in neighboring Roxbury. What she and her family could not produce on their land, they bought and bartered for from friends, keeping the 18th century economy moving and growing.

With her life as inspiration, the organization bearing her name began in 1997 as a retail marketplace for local products. More than 15 years later, it includes a business incubator providing office space for new and emerging businesses to start, grow, thrive and move out on their own.

Hannah Grimes’ Entrepreneurship Program is a six-month intensive program focusing on raising current businesses to the next level of operation. Graduates of the program report an average sales increase of 68 percent in one year.

The original Hannah Grimes Marketplace continues to grow and now supports more than 270 local artisans, cooks and farmers. The center recently established a partnership to strengthen and support the area’s growing regional food system, which will help improve farm income, create jobs in the food production industry, and stimulate economic productivity and food self-sufficiency in the region.

The Champions in Action program was launched in 2002 by Citizens Bank and WMUR to support nonprofit organizations in their efforts in local communities.

Congratulations to everyone at Hannah Grimes.

We’ve been talking trade a lot here at the Division of Economic Development because there is so much interest in the opportunities the world over has for New Hampshire companies.

For companies that have made the leap overseas, the International Trade Resource Center has a terrific seminar coming up on Feb. 13, International Marketing: Putting Your Best Face Forward. It’s a full day of tips including how to increase website traffic and using social media in other parts of the world.

Speakers include Nancy Clark, president of Glen Group in North Conway; Allen Voivod of Epiphanies Inc., in Gilford, and Wendy Pease of Rapport International in Sudbury, Mass.

Cost is $95 and includes breakfast and lunch. Go ahead and click over to register here.

(We’ll wait for you to come back.)

It’s lights, camera, action next week for an Amherst company, which will be featured on the popular television series, World’s Greatest, which is produced by How2Media.

Vibrac is a small manufacturer marking its 53rd year and it makes the world’s most sensitive torque measurement instruments, used in aerospace, military, defense, medical, bearing and the automotive industry.

We are especially pleased with this recognition, as our folks at the New Hampshire Procurement Technical Assistance program has worked with Vibrac. The piece is set to air Feb. 4 and 11.

“Very importantly, they are not resting on their longevity,” said GordonFreeman, executive producer of the show. “They continue to launch new product lines of precision measurement instruments to help multiple industries. That makes them a company we like to feature on World’s Greatest. We think their story will be meaningful to our viewers.”

We think so, too. Click on the media link above to see where it will air near you.

We’re heading over to the 8th annual Small Business Day next Friday, Feb. 8. Brought to you by the Business and Industry Association of New Hampshire, the half-day event will take a look at federal health care reform, financing strategies for your small business, the new LLC act and an update on policy issues from legislators.
Gov. Maggie Hassan will also attend.
Cost is $15 and you need to register. Call 224-5388×116 or click here.


Lorna Colquhoun

Communications Director

NH Division of Economic Development

Priority 1 for Business

Tuesday, January 22nd, 2013

By virtue of its top billing, the number 1 is usually always a priority – it’s a good thing  to be Number 1 if you are on a sports team or you’re waiting in line for a concert ticket.

Today, the number 1 was a good thing for business because the Senate Ways and Means Committee took up SB1, a bipartisan plan to double New Hampshire’s research and development tax credit and repeal the sunset provision in current legislation. The bill was sponsored by 21 state senators and five state representatives and the committee voted 5-0 to send along. This is a number 1 priority.

Gov. Hassan visited Globe Manufacturing in Pittsfield last week as part of her Innovate NH tour. The company makes fire suits used around the world.

Under this bill, the tax credit would go from $1 million to $2 million and it would be permanent – it would never go away – and New Hampshire would be among the majority of states that offer this incentive to businesses.
Sure, other states may offer more, but this is our way of being supportive of businesses that spend time and money looking for ways to be faster, stronger, lighter, economical and otherwise more productive and cutting edge because, in the end, we all benefit.

“It is one more incentive for out of state businesses to consider New Hampshire, particularly our high tech sector, which in turn helps the state to provide well-paying jobs and further diversify the economy,” said Christopher Way, interim director of the Division of Economic Development at this morning’s hearing. “Companies of all sizes gain as it encourages small companies to remain on the leading edge of R&D, which also benefits the larger companies they in turn supply.”

Also testifying at the hearing were representatives from several businesses, trade organizations and manufacturers from around the state, including New England Wire Technologies, located in Lisbon; Freudenberg , with eight locations in New Hampshire, and Graphicast of Jaffrey. In all, about two dozen people attended this hearing.

Companies that are devoting time and money to research and development will gain and it will help, as Val Zanchuck, president of Graphicast, noted, being awarded the credit enabled him to hire three interns from Dartmouth College to conduct research on the company’s manufacturing process.

First introduced in 2007, the R&D tax credit is increasingly popular. Last year, 111 companies applied for a total of $4.1 million. Since only $1 million is available, the companies received a pro-rated amount, so one requesting the maximum of $50,000 received $12,065.

By doubling the amount available, companies would get a greater return on their applications. It tells them, and any prospective business considering a move or expansion here, that innovation matters here and that New Hampshire is committed to that.

Lorna Colquhoun
Communications Director
Division of Economic Development


Gov. Hassan Off and Running

Monday, January 7th, 2013

Gov. Maggie Hassan tours Freudenberg-NOK in Manchester on Jan. 4.

Maggie Hassan spent her first day as governor meeting with officials from Freudenberg-NOK Sealing Technologies, a company with deep roots  in the Granite State and plans for investment, expansion and creation of new jobs.

Hassan used the visit to highlight New Hampshire’s Research and Development tax credit, which she said will help to encourage more innovative businesses to come to New Hampshire, while helping companies already here to prosper.

“My Innovate NH plan calls for doubling the R&D tax credit, a measure that has bipartisan support, so we can help businesses like Freudenberg-NOK and others across the state to innovate, grow and succeed,” she said.

Freudenberg-NOK is a leading manufacturer of materials and products for the automotive, energy and aerospace industries. Last summer, company officials said they anticipate hiring up to 100 new employees and investing millions of dollars in capital expenditure over the next two years to maintain its robust commitment in the Granite State.

“The Research and Development tax credit is very popular among our manufacturing companies,” said Christopher Way, interim director of the Division of Economic Development. “Doubling the tax credit is a great first step for this new administration.”

In a statement, Leesa Smith, Freudenberg North America President and Regional Representative, called the R&D credit a meaningful investment in New Hampshire.

“It acts as an incentive for companies like Freudenberg to make investments in innovation and new technologies, which could ultimately result in the creation of new jobs.”

Hassan toured the Manchester facility on Friday afternoon, which employs about 420 people, meeting a number of workers. Freudenberg operates three companies, seven industrial facilities and employs a total of 1,300 people in the state; it began its US operations in the Granite State 60 years ago.


Lorna Colquhoun

Communications Director

Division of Economic Development