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Archive for August, 2011

ATTN: Grocers – Water Needed

Monday, August 29th, 2011

In order to help areas of the state struggling to recover from the effects of yesterday’s tropical storm, the Division of Economic Development is putting out the call to local grocers who might have available bottled water for sale.

If you are a grocer who has water available, please contact the Division of Economic Development’s Dawn Escabi at 271-2591 or dawn.escabi@dred.state.nh.us. We will be collecting this information and passing it on to officials at the Emergency Operations Center to connect resources with areas in need.

Division of Economic Development Prepared to Collect Business Storm Damage Info

Sunday, August 28th, 2011

CONCORD – The New Hampshire Division of Economic Development is ready to work with companies that may be impacted by damage from Hurricane Irene.

“It will be important to collect as much information as possible so that we can determine the extent of the damage and then go about seeking assistance through the Small Business Administration,” said New Hampshire Division of Economic Development Interim Director Chris Way. “If a business has sustained physical damage, is out of operation or has simply seen production affected by the storm, we urge them to contact us at our toll-free number at 1-800-417-4110.”

If there is widespread storm damage, the Division will contact local economic development officials and resource partners to elicit information about affected businesses and to develop a plan for assistance.

Hurricane Irene Storm Awareness Update for NH Businesses

Friday, August 26th, 2011

We here at the No Bull Business Blog hope everyone in NH is able to weather the storm of Hurricane Irene as best as possible. Please keep in mind that the Division of Economic Development also serves the state’s businesses as a resource for disaster assistance and recovery. Contact the Division at 271-2341 if you need non-emergency support. You can also find support resources through the NH Red Cross, and Ready NH.

Meanwhile, please check out these additional disaster prep and business recovery resources, on continuity planning, PR/media relations, and using social media during natural and man-made disasters. You can also find them all on the Division’s Slideshare channel.

Inc. Magazine Celebrates 26 Fast Growing NH Companies

Thursday, August 25th, 2011

Twenty-six…..that’s the magic number of New Hampshire firms that have made it to Inc Magazine’s list of “5000 Fastest Growing Companies in the U.S.”

What amazed me the most about the Granite State businesses listed were their diversity – you have a gift basket company, some entries from the high tech realm and, yes, even the company that designed this web site.

I hope that you’ll join me in saluting the achievements of the following New Hampshire companies:

NorAm International Partners  – Hudson
Namtek – Bedford     
RevereIT – Nashua     
Rustic Crust – Pittsfield     
RewardsNOW – Dover     
Planet Fitness  – Newington    
Dyn – Manchester     
GourmetGiftBaskets.com  – Londonderry     
Bean Group   – Portsmouth     
Cellular Specialties   – Manchester     
Benefit Strategies  – Manchester     
Digital Prospectors  – Exeter     
Integrated Deicing Services  – MANCHESTER     
TMSi Logistics  – Portsmouth     
MAS Medical Staffing – Manchester     
W.S. Badger Company – Gilsum     
KBW Financial Staffing & Recruiting  – Bedford     
BuyATimeshare.com – Merrimack     
D.R. Guilbeault Air Compressor – Hudson     
Agility Mfg  – Dover     
Trade Wings – Portsmouth     
SilverTech  – Manchester     
North American Equipment Upfitters   – Hooksett     
Highland Forwarding – Bedford     
The Barking Dog  – Exeter     
Favorite Foods – Somersworth   

For more information, visit  http://www.inc.com/inc5000/welcome.

– Steve Boucher, NH Division of Economic Development Communications & Legislative Director

Day-Long Seminar Critical for Exporters

Thursday, August 25th, 2011

On Thursday, September 22 from 9:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m., the International Trade Resource Center (ITRC), in cooperation with Evolutions in Business, will offer a seminar, “Export Controls and Licensing Under the EAR” at its headquarters at 172 Pembroke Road in Concord. This full-day seminar will help participants understand the requirements under Export Administration (EAR) and Export Administration Act, how to determine whether a license is needed, procedures of obtaining a license, as well as other crucial information on navigating and complying with the EAR regulations.

In 2010, a total of approximately 2,200 New Hampshire businesses exported nearly $4 billion in 2010. With new regulations and, it’s critical that businesses that are currently exporting or that plan to do so in the near future know their obligations under these acts. Failure to obtain a license, if one is needed, for either the production or the destination of the product can result in both civil and criminal penalties—and, as an exporter, it is the responsibility of the business to determine if a license is needed.

The seminar will cover topics including: what items and activities are subject to the Export Administration regulations; the steps that need to be taken to determine export licensing requirements for a product; how to navigate the Commerce Control List (CCL); the proper classification of products; when you can export or re-export without a license; export clearance procedures, enforcement and record-keeping; new regulations and updates, and much more.
The seminar will be presented by Jeanette Reed, Vice President and CEO of Evolutions in Business, who has 20 years of experience in advising, training and counseling defense, security and commercial corporations on export and import regulations.

Cost for the seminar is $95 per person. For online payment and registration, go to www.exportnh.org, click on “Calendar of Events”, and then “Event and Seminar Registration.” To pay by check, make it out to SNHU/IIB and mail it to: P.O. Box 1856, Concord, NH 03301. For more information or if you have questions, contact Ellie White at 603-271-8444 or email ellie.white@dred.state.nh.us.

Ask CJ: Laying Out the NH Advantage

Thursday, August 25th, 2011

“I have heard that there are grants available to business owners in NH.  Is that true?  What other economic incentives are available to a NH business owner?”

I get this question pretty frequently from businesses of all sizes and industries.  What is that “NH Advantage” that we keep hearing about? 

NH Division of Economic Development Seacoast Business Services Specialist Christine Davis

Unlike some other states, New Hampshire isn’t known to dangle hefty incentive packages to lure new business into the state.  We don’t offer short term special deals to a prospective company from out of state that isn’t available to our current business owners.  What NH does offer, the NH Advantage, includes such things as our lack of an income tax and sales tax.  Also part of the Advantage is our high standard of living, quality of education, and geographic location.  We also have government agencies such as ours, the Division of Economic Development, that are reachable and responsive. 

Besides the above-mentioned incentives for locating your business in the Granite State, there are a number of other potential NH-based financial incentives.  Large energy consumers may be eligible for a grant that covers the cost of an energy audit.  Our division, www.nheconomy.com, offers free technical assistance, which could include an energy audit (valued at $10,000) to businesses that are spending $100,000 or more on their combined utilities.  The business can take this audit and work with a number of financial institutions, including the NH Community Development Finance Authority (which also has some grant funds for energy audits) to assist them with a cost effective plan to implement these recommended efficiencies.  These funds are limited so you will need to check first on availability. 

The Business Finance Authority (BFA) offers the Business Energy Conservation Loan Fund: http://www.nhbfa.com/BFA_LoanPlans_BizEnergy.html which is financing assistance for energy efficiency improvements.  The USDA Rural Development program, www.rurdev.usda.gov/vt, offers both grant and loan programs for a variety of projects and programs.  You will need to visit their website to see if your business falls within the geographic and industry parameters for the projects they support.  The NH Community Development Finance Authority, www.nhcdfa.org, also offers a tax credit program that provides, “New Hampshire businesses the unique opportunity to invest and target their tax dollars to community development projects throughout the state in exchange for a 75% State Tax Credit through the Tax Credit Program. This program enables businesses to invest cash, securities, or property to fund economic or community development projects in exchange for this 75% tax credit which can be applied against any or all three of the business profits, business enterprise, or insurance premium taxes. The donation also may be eligible for treatment as a state and federal charitable contribution.”

Businesses that are located within an Economic Revitalization Zone may qualify for a tax credit if they are making improvements to the facility and creating new jobs.  You will first need to check with your town or our office, www.nheconomy.com, to see if you are located in an ER Zone.  If so, you may be eligible to receive up to $40,000 in tax credits per year for up to 5 years to be used against your business profits tax and or your business enterprise tax.  It is a complicated formula but our staff will help with the heavy lifting.  This program also has limited credits available but that ceiling was not reached last year.

Non-profits are quite familiar with grants, as many of them need this support in order to function.  Grants are almost always restricted to non-profit entities and when I hear someone tell me they received a call about grant opportunities for businesses (of course in exchange for a fee) I cringe.  There is one grant in NH for businesses and it is the real deal.  The NH Job Training Fund is a matching grant program available to both for-profit and non-profit entities.  Companies can be awarded a cash match that ranges from $750 up to $100,000 for skills enhancement training.  What does that include?  Just about any training that increases the skill set of your employees including computer training, technical training, leadership and management skills training and lean manufacturing to name a few.  Details on this fantastic program can be found at www.nhjobtrainingfund.org

Through the University of NH the Green Launching Pad, www.greenlaunchingpad.org, “is a public and private sector initiative that enables local start-ups to bring green solutions to market.  We discover New Hampshire’s best and brightest, and then support them with the financial resources, business infrastructure, and academic expertise to succeed.”  Companies apply and compete to be selected as a GLP recipient.  Winners not only receive some funding and technical assistance but they also get some great press which has a lot of value. 

Also through UNH is the New Hampshire Innovation Research Center.  Created by the Legislature in 1991, these grant funds are meant, “To increase collaboration, technology development and innovation between New Hampshire businesses and universities.  New Hampshire businesses propose projects in collaboration with researchers, typically at Dartmouth Medical or the University of New Hampshire. Companies then match their project awards to fund the research which often leads to new production methods, new products and sometimes new companies.”  You can visit their website, www.nhirc.unh.edu, to learn more about this program.

Each city, town or county may have its own incentive program for business development.  You would want to reach out to your town manager, mayor or economic development director to see what is available.  You never know until you ask.

Christine J. Davis works for the N.H. Division of Economic Development as a resource specialist serving businesses in Rockingham and Strafford counties. Her role is to provide the support needed for businesses so that they may remain viable and growing entities in the community. Ms. Davis lives in Exeter with her two daughters.  When not performing her work or parenting duties she likes to spend time at the beach and discovering news places and activities in the community with her girls.  She can be reached at Christine.davis@dred.state.nh.us.

NH Awarded $41,000 for Solar and Energy Efficiency Projects

Monday, August 22nd, 2011

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has announced grants for more than 900 agricultural producers and rural small businesses across the country to implement renewable energy and energy efficiency measures in their operations. Secretary Vilsack made the announcement as part of President Obama’s rural economic bus tour in the Midwest where he highlighted efforts underway to reduce our country’s dependence on foreign oil, which will increase the economic competitiveness of rural America and promote job creation. 

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack

“These investments enable our farmers, ranchers and rural small business owners to develop renewable energy systems and make energy efficiency improvements that will save them thousands of dollars in energy costs each year,” Vilsack said. “This funding is an important part of the Obama Administration’s plan to conserve natural resources, create jobs and lead our country on the path to becoming more energy independent.”

The grants are being provided through the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP), a 2008 Farm Bill initiative. REAP offers funds for farmers, ranchers and rural small businesses to purchase and install renewable energy systems and make energy-efficiency improvements.  These federal funds leverage other funding sources for small businesses. In all, USDA announced more than $11.6 million in energy grants today. 

According to Molly Lambert, USDA State Director for Rural Development, “The REAP program is helping many agricultural producers and rural small businesses reduce energy consumption.” For example, Larry Moore of Loudon, NH, was selected to receive an $5,862 grant to make energy-efficiency improvements to his maple sugaring operations, included in these improvements is the installation of an in series 2000 gph reverse osmosis system which is designed to increase energy efficiency by removing water from the sap prior to boiling. 

Main Street Properties of Warner, LLC, located in Warner, NH will use an $18,625 grant to install an 11.25kw photovoltaic system that will generate solar electricity for their real estate management business.  The pole mounted solar system will offset 65 percent of the annual energy consumption.

Scenic Nursery & Landscaping, Inc will use their $16,500 grant to install a 10kw photovoltaic solar system to replace electricity,  The installation of the solar system is expected to generate 14,296 kHw of electricity.As a result, this project will significantly reduce the applicants reliance on fossil fuel based electricity and help to retain 8 jobs.

Funding of each award is contingent upon the recipient meeting the conditions of the grant agreement. Grants can finance up to 25 percent of a project’s cost, not to exceed $500,000 for renewables, $250,000 for efficiency.  For a complete listing of Rural Energy for America Program grant recipients announced today, please click here.

USDA, through its Rural Development mission area, administers and manages housing, business and community infrastructure and facility programs through a national network of state and local offices. Rural Development has an existing portfolio of more than $155 billion in loans and loan guarantees. These programs are designed to improve the economic stability of rural communities, businesses, residents, farmers and ranchers and improve the quality of life in rural America.

Fisher Cats to Celebrate Boston Bruins Stanley Cup Championship on August 25

Thursday, August 18th, 2011

NH Division of Economic Development, 107.7 WTPL-FM “The Pulse” bringing “Big Bad Bruins” alumni to Manchester

Manchester, N.H. – The New Hampshire Fisher Cats, Double-A affiliate of the Toronto Blue Jays, in conjunction with the NH Division of Economic Development and 107.7 WTPL-FM “The Pulse” are pleased to announce that Thursday, August 25, will be Boston Bruins Stanley Cup Champions Day at Northeast Delta Dental Stadium when the Fisher Cats face the Harrisburg Senators at 7:05 p.m.
As a part of the festivities, Bruins Stanley Cup alumni Johnny “Pie” McKenzie, Ken Hodge and Don Marcotte will be in attendance and will each open the game with the ceremonial “empty netter” by using a hockey stick to shoot a baseball into a vacant hockey net at home plate.  McKenzie, Hodge and Marcotte were all members of the famous “Big Bad Bruins” and each won Stanley Cup Championships with Boston in 1970 and 1972.
“It is a great thrill for us to celebrate the Bruins’ Stanley Cup Championship with some of the great Big Bad Bruins at a Fisher Cats game here in Manchester,” said Fisher Cats Vice President of Business Operations Matt Person.  “We anticipate a great night of honoring the Black and Gold and their tremendous achievement with our fans.”
The Fisher Cats and Boston Bruins invite fans to celebrate the team’s first Stanley Cup title since 1972 with Bruins mascot Blades, Bruins Ice Girls, Bruins themed games, giveaways and prizes including a team autographed stick and other exciting Bruins memorabilia.
Boston Bruins Radio Network affiliate 107.7 WTPL-FM “The Pulse” will broadcast live from Northeast Delta Dental Stadium airing the Bob Lobel Show from 1:00-3:00 p.m. and the New Hampshire Today Show with Jack Heath from 3:00-5:00 p.m. with guests from the Boston Bruins and Fisher Cats appearing on-air throughout the programs.
“We all enjoyed the tremendous playoff run by the Bruins, which led to the Stanley Cup victory, and we hope there are many more titles coming,” said Courtney Galluzzo, owner of WTPL.  “New Hampshire loves the Bruins and we are thrilled to be part of another tribute to the Championship squad.”
“The NH Division of Economic Development is proud to partner with the Fisher Cats and the New Hampshire Today Show on WTPL to honor the accomplishments of Bruins past and present,” said NH Division of Economic Development Communications & Legislative Director Steve Boucher. “This is sure to be a great event that will bring together fans from throughout the region to have fun at the best ballpark in minor league baseball, in the best state to live, work and do business.”
August 25 is also Military Appreciation Night, presented by the New Hampshire Army National Guard, when veterans and active members of our armed forces will be recognized at the game, followed by a post-game Atlas Fireworks Show to end the night.
Fisher Cats individual regular season tickets, home playoff game tickets and Fisher Cats Playoff Ticket Strips are available now at the Fisher Cats Ticket Office at 1 Line Drive, Manchester, NH 03101, online at www.nhfishercats.com or by calling the Fisher Cats at (603) 641-2005.

Plastic Reuse Company Comes to Colebrook – 25 New Jobs Expected

Thursday, August 18th, 2011

COLEBROOK – At least 25 jobs are expected to be created within the next year thanks to a new company opening in Colebrook.


Plastimo Inc., a New Hampshire Corporation created in June, has come to an agreement with Rex Jacobsma to purchase a 14-acre site with a 110,000 square foot industrial building located at 23 Gould Street in Colebrook. The new enterprise is owned by Montreal entrepreneur Mohammed El Fehdi, plastics recycling entrepreneur, Julie Baumier and local businessman, Rick Tillotson.  Mr. El Fehdi has business interests in Quebec, Vietnam, and Dubai.  Ms. Baumier has a plastics recycling business in Granby, Quebec.


“I decided to locate the expansion of my business in Colebrook in large part because of the outstanding treatment and follow up from the state’s economic development team as well as the facility’s close proximity to our Granby facility and my home in Montréal” said Mohammed. “But for the critical assistance from Beno Lamontagne, Michael Bergeron and even George Bald from the New Hampshire Division of Economic Development, I would  not have considered making this move to New Hampshire.”


Another important factor in El Fehdi’s decision is the partnership with Rick Tillotson who owns former balloon manufacturer, Tillotson Dipped Products Co., Inc., and with his brother Tom, a former glove and auto parts manufacturer, Healthco, LLC.  Both companies formerly operated in the Dixville, NH factory building which belongs to Tillotson Corporation.  The Tillotson’s lease for the Dixville facility was canceled by Tillotson Corporation in 2008, in preparation for selling the hotel.  Because Ocean Properties planned to demolish the factory, in order to accommodate the prospective buyer, Tillotson Corporation contracted with Healthco to remove all the equipment and materials from the building.  Much of the equipment has already been moved to the former Manchester Manufacturing building for storage.  A large glove machine and an eyedropper making machine are scheduled to be moved at the end of the month, with a hoped for closing date on the purchase in September. 


With some initial orders already in hand from Ms. Baumier’s plastics recycling plant in Granby, the Colebrook factory will start processing plastic material for them with some special equipment due to arrive after the closing.  El Fehdi, Baumier and Tillotson will be combining their assets, knowledge and creativity to start and expand this new company in Colebrook.


“I hope this gives our region some optimism for the future, perhaps even a new beginning for this region of the State” said Tillotson. “I can’t say enough about the important help we have received from the NH Economic Development team and how that assistance is allowing us to move ahead and start this exciting new venture.”  Mr. Tillotson has not been connected with Tillotson Corporation management or operations since he publicly spoke against the sale of the Balsams to Ocean Properties.  He was removed as a director of the company in June.  “I feel bad about many of the decisions that have been made in the last year” he said, “but, in my continuing role as a Trustee of the Neil Tillotson Trust, I remain committed to fulfilling his wishes that the assets of his Trust go to benefit the people and communities of this North Country region.”


The company intends to apply for a community development block grant to assist in the purchase of capital equipment and hopes to begin production this Fall.

A Snapshot of the Diversity of NH Businesses, “Storified”

Wednesday, August 17th, 2011

We tried something new last week on the No Bull Facebook Page and Twitter feed. During “Facebook Friday,” we invited our Likers and Followers to proudly promote themselves and their ventures by sharing links to their business’s own Facebook Page, Twitter handle, and/or website.

What a response!

Dozens of professionals joined the conversation, showcasing the amazing and inspiring variety of bold, passionate, and innovative Granite Staters, forging ahead and contributing positively to NH’s economic success. We’ve taken this great feedback from the social web and used a cool new tool called Storify to create a visual snapshot of the original conversation here on the No Bull Blog. Enjoy!