Page 1

Networking: Southern Tier LinkedIn group reaches goal. Page 3.

Special Report: Small Business/Buy Local. Section B.









Vol. XXVIII • No. 8






February 21, 2014 • $2.00


Motorcoach firm Ultimate Arrival gets into gear

Tioga State Bank: 150 years of navigating a community bank BY NORM POLTENSON JOURNAL STAFF


SYRACUSE — More than five months after launching operations, a new local chartered-transportation company is hoping for growth in 2014. Ultimate Arrival, LLC, a family-operated business, is located in a 4,500square-foot space at 971 Spencer St. in Syracuse, near the intersection of Hiawatha Boulevard. “We’re looking to grow in Syracuse,” says Jessica Sloma, a Bridgeport resident who serves as the company president and the firm’s majority owner. The business has three divisions: motor-coach buses, executive transportation, ■ For more and aircraft-charter small busibrokerage. ness/buy The motor coach local news, and executive-transplease see portation divisions our special primarily serve the report. corporate and acaSection B. demic markets, along



The principals of Ultimate Arrival, LLC, including Ryan Kuepper (left), Jessica Sloma (center), and Donald Kuepper, Jr. (right), launched the business last September with operations at 971 Spencer St. in Syracuse. Sloma is the majority owner, while Ryan Kuepper (Sloma’s step brother), and Donald Kuepper, Jr. (Sloma’s stepfather) are the minority owners. with demand for social outings, including weddings, nights on the town, and wine tours. Ultimate Arrival is “still developing” the aircraft-charter brokering portion of the business, which is the smallest division of the three, says Sloma. The firm’s principals are Jessica Sloma; Donald Kuepper, Jr., Sloma’s stepfather who serves as company vice president and director of operations; and Ryan Kuepper, Sloma’s step brother who also serves as vice president of aircraft-charter brokering. Sloma owns 60 percent of the firm,

while the Kueppers each own 20 percent, according to Sloma. They began operations last September but formed the company a few months earlier in June, Sloma says. The firm had landed its first contract before the principals had secured operating space. Ultimate Arrival’s first contract-generated business was with Harrah’s Casino in Atlantic City, N.J. Ultimate Arrival partnered with Wade Tours, Inc. of Schenectady and rented that firm’s buses to begin the casino conSee ULTIMATE ARRIVAL, page 5B

SPENCER — How do you mark your 150th birthday? If you are Tioga State Bank (TSB), you celebrate for an entire year, starting with a ribbon-cutting, press conference, and gift of $20,000 to local food banks. The kick-off event took place Jan. 28 at the bank’s headquarters in Spencer. During 2014, TSB will promote a travelling display about the bank, launch contests for adults and children, publish a cookbook with See TSB, page 8


Bob Fisher, president and CEO of Tioga State Bank, greets staff and guests at the bank’s 150th anniversary celebration.


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February 21, 2014

Binghamton–area business owner urges involvement in Small Business Day in Albany BY ERIC REINHARDT JOURNAL STAFF


Coach shifting to outlet store, changing locations at Destiny SYRACUSE — Upscale handbag retailer Coach will soon convert its full-price store at Destiny USA to an outlet, and change locations in the shopping mall. The outlet store, called Coach Factory, is expected to open in late spring in the first level of Destiny’s expansion, according to a news release from the mall operator. The full-price Coach store has been on Destiny USA’s second level for nine years and will remain open until Coach Factory launches. Coach is a retailer of accessories and is especially known for its handbags and wallets. “Coach has been a staple in this center since 2005”, Rob Schoeneck, general manager of Destiny USA, said in the news release. “The Coach brand has experienced tremendous success at Destiny USA for almost 10 years and its commitment to expand its presence and offering is additional evidence of the growing strength and market at Destiny USA.” Coach Factory will occupy 8,000 square feet, and be located across from Cheesecake Factory and next to the Brooks Brothers Factory Store, according to the release. Coach Factory also has a store at the Waterloo Premium Outlets shopping center in the town of Junius in Seneca County.

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BINGHAMTON — A Binghamton–area small-business owner is working with the Greater Binghamton Chamber of Commerce to organize a bus trip to Albany for the upcoming Small Business Day at the state capital. The New York chapter of the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) sponsors the event on March 12. Small Business Day is a chance for business owners to share their stories and let their state lawmakers know how proposed laws will impact their companies, according to the NFIB website. NICOLE COLLINS/CNYBJ C. Arthur (Art) Price, Jr., vice president and CEO of Triple Cities Pipe Cleaning, C. Arthur (Art) Price, Jr., vice president and CEO of Triple Cities Pipe Cleaning, Inc. (which does business as Roto-Rooter Inc. and Towpath Pipe Restoration, has Sewer-Drain Service) and Towpath Pipe been communicating with small-busiRestoration, has been communicating with ness owners in the Southern Tier and small-business owners in the Southern Tier across the state to generate support for and across the state to generate support for Small Business Day in Albany. Small Business Day in Albany. He’s been working with officials from the contacts through email communication, Greater Binghamton Chamber, including and also spoke with a group of Southern Stacey Duncan, government-relations man- Tier business owners who’ve formed a ager, and Carol Armstrong, development group through LinkedIn, a social-media manager, on organizing a bus trip to Albany website for people in professional occupa6351 Rochester_CNYBusJournal_4.875x6.375_Outline.pdf 1 2/12/14 3:22 PM tions. for the day. Besides his efforts with the Greater Price has been spreading the word to

Binghamton Chamber, Price has also contacted more than 90 chambers of commerce statewide to encourage participation in Small Business Day. “I have had phone communication with Buffalo, with Camillus, with Utica, with Glens Falls … with Cortland County, with Chemung County,” Price says. In an email message to his contacts, he cites information from the website that ranks New York as the last state where a company would want “to do business” in 2014. In that same message, Price contends that small businesses always seem to be the “dumping ground for fees, taxes, mandates, and other regulations that other parts of the economy don’t have to bare.” Hoping to boost the number of attendees from Broome County at the event, the Greater Binghamton Chamber of Commerce is organizing a bus trip for Small Business Day. “Last year, there were a total of three people from Broome County [who] attended,” Price says. Participants included himself; his father, Clarence Price; and the Greater Binghamton Chamber’s Stacey Duncan, he says. As of Feb. 17, a total of 12 people have registered for the bus trip, but Price anticipates as many as 45 people will sign up. It will include meeting the area’s state lawmakers that evening for dinner, Price notes. Price is hoping the event attracts about 150 people from areas around New York, a figure he says would double last year’s attendance. “I think that we’re going to achieve that,” he adds. The agenda for small-business owners this year, Price says, is expressing support for cutting the corporate-tax rate, which Gov. Cuomo on Jan. 6 proposed as part of a $2 billion package of tax relief for families and companies. Small-business owners also plan to express support for changes to New York’s Scaffold Law. The law imposes liability for elevationrelated injuries on contractors and property owners engaged in construction, repair, or demolition work. If an employee is injured while working on scaffolding, the employee can sue the employer or property owner for pain and suffering, Price says. And, a court isn’t permitted to consider if the employee had the proper training, had all the right equipment, or refused to use the equipment, he adds. “It has become a very, very difficult way for business to work in New York because insurance rates are skyrocketing to cover the pain and suffering costs that courts are allowing to take place,” Price says. New York is the only state in the nation that still has the Scaffold Law, he says. q Contact Reinhardt at

The Central New York Business Journal • 3

February 21, 2014

Southern Tier LinkedIn group reaches goal, keeps growing


PEEPS EXPERTS IN Commercial Lending, Insurance, Employee Benefits + Retirement Planning


NICHOLS — On Feb. 13, more than 80 professionals from across the Southern Tier gathered at Tioga Downs Casino & Entertainment for the Binghamton & Southern Tier NY Business Community (B&STNYBC) LinkedIn group’s monthly meet-up. Last October (see Oct. 18 issue), The Central New York Business Journal first reported on this LinkedIn group of Southern Tier professionals who meet monthly to share best business practices. Organizer Dan Mori, president of Elmira–based staffing firm Employment Solutions, had said that one of his goals was to bring the Binghamton–Elmira–Corning business communities together for a joint meet-up at Tioga Downs. The Feb. 13 meetup was the fruition of that goal. The meeting agenda included attendees giving a “30-second commercial” of what they do, followed by a networking break, and rounded out with a presentation by Jay Dinga, regional director of business development and government relations at Tioga Downs, on statistics and findings that support Tioga Downs Casino & Entertainment’s contention that the Southern Tier region can only sustain one casino. Mori says he feels “appreciative” that so many professionals attended the joint meetup. He thought maybe 70 would show up in ideal weather conditions. But, to have more than 80 people attend with a snowstorm looming, he says he was “blown away.” The purpose of the meet-ups is to provide a networking environment for local Southern Tier professionals to come together to develop a referral arena and do business with each other. “Doing business locally, it helps us all grow,” Mori said in his opening remarks to


On Feb. 13, more than 80 professionals from across the Southern Tier gathered at Tioga Downs Casino & Entertainment for the Binghamton & Southern Tier NY Business Community (B&STNYBC) LinkedIn group’s monthly meet-up. the group. Kim Bush, owner of EverGreene Graphics in Greene, has attended all meetups except for the first one last March. Her graphic design and print buying company is now a year old, and the meet-ups have helped her build relationships with local professionals and gained potential clients, she says. Furthermore, if she meets people who don’t directly need her services, they often refer other people to her who do. “I get more out of this than the national networking groups I pay membership dues for,” says Bush. She also says that the B&STNYBC meetups have generated a larger turnout than the other events she has attended. Currently, there is no charge to attend the monthly meet-ups, and no charge for them in the foreseeable future, says Mori. Every month, Mori estimates that about 35 percent to 45 percent of the attendees are new. While the organizers’ only promotion of the event has been posting it on the LinkedIn group, word of mouth also contributes to new attendees showing up. For instance, Greg Rollo, owner of GSR CrossFit in Vestal, heard from his friend Pete Walsh (of Traditions at the Glen) that he would benefit from attending these meet-ups, so he came. In addition to the meet-up’s growth in attendance and demand, the B&STNYBC LinkedIn group has grown 27 percent

in membership from 991 members last October to 1,264, as of Feb. 17. One of Mori’s challenges going forward is trying to accommodate all the groups that want to host a meet-up. With new territories in the mix, businesses like the Corning Credit Union and Watkins Glen International have expressed interest in hosting a meet-up, among others, he says. Since last March, the group has gathered at various locations in the Binghamton area, including Binghamton University in Vestal, the Schorr Family Firehouse Stage in Johnson City, and the State Office Building in downtown Binghamton, to name a few. Binghamton University, and now Tioga Downs, both have agreed to host the meetups on a quarterly basis. As for another goal Mori outlined last fall, passing off the reins of organizer to someone new, he says he is holding off on that for a while. Organizing the events is manageable for him currently and he has a support staff from within the group who help him. But, Mori says, in order for the group to remain a success, eventually there will need to be a successor. “If I can’t walk away, then it’s a failure,” says Mori. The next B&STNYBC meet-up is scheduled for March 26 at Traditions at the Glen in Johnson City. q Contact Collins at

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“Let’s not worry just yet. Right now forty-five percent of all New Yorkers, including over half of Suburban

consumers, say that the condition of the real estate market including the value of properties have improved 4 • The Central New York Business Journal

over the last year, and nearly as many expect to see additional improvement in the year ahead. Only a quarter believe things have recently worsened and fewer than one in five anticipate more bad news. Compared to where we’ve been, this is a very solid footing. Of course, for those that need to worry, real estate is only one component of a broader economy that as yet has not recovered to everyone’s satisfaction.”

February 21, 2014

Siena survey: real-estate market ‘positive’ but ‘pendulum is swinging’ by eric reinhardt

Current Sentiment Scores

journal staff


  ew York state consumers’   view of the real-estate   market remains “positive,” but the market itself may be changing somewhat. That’s according to Donald Levy, director of the Siena (College) Research Institute (SRI), which released its latest survey report of consumer realestate sentiment in the Empire State on Feb. 3. The New York real-estate market has moved more toward that zone that SRI has identified as “a thriving zone” where everybody wins and consumers feel as though values are increasing. That is where the state has been for the past four or five quarters, especially the last three. “It’s interesting that perception of buying [in relation to] selling has changed as much as it has. It’s at the point now where across the entire state … they’re potentially perceived as equal..,” Levy says. A deeper analysis, according to Levy, suggests that New York City is influencing those numbers. The SRI data points to New York City having transitioned more toward a seller’s market already, compared to a buyer’s market.

2010 - 2013

55.0 45.0 35.0 25.0

35.3 32.5 35.1 33.1 31.4

30.7 31.5 29.2 33.4 31.2 28.4 22.9



5.0 -5.0 -15.0


20.1 17.7 13.5 12.512.0 7.2 12.2 6.8 3.1

1Q10 2Q10 3Q10 4Q10 1Q11 2Q11 3Q11 4Q11 1Q12 2Q12 3Q12 4Q12 1Q13-4.8 2Q13 3Q13 4Q13

-12.1 -6.8 -14.8 -19.6 -21.0 -24.1 -30.9


-26.6 -31.0-32.0 -28.3 -30.0 -35.0 -38.9 -42.2 -36.7 -40.1 -45.0 -25.0



-30.9 -41.3

Overall Current



-41.7 -50.8

Sell Current

Buy Current


“I’m willing to conclude that the low in the short term, he says. mistic about the housing market. perception is we’re moving in that Despite the data, it’s not yet a Looking forward, the overall Each Real Estate Sentiment score is derived through statistical diffusion weighted to consider response intensity. direction because the selling fu- time to “worry,” Levy contends, future real-estate sentiment score A sentiment score of zero (0) in any category, reflects a breakeven point at which equal levels of optimism and ture numbers are so high across noting the New York real-estate was 19.2, down from 24.8 last pessimism among the population have been measured relative to the overall market, or buying or selling real every of the market quarter. estate. region Scores can rangestate, from while an absolute low ofremains -100 to a on high“very of 100solid but scores below -50 or above +50 are both the current, and more so even the footing.” The sentiment rare and extreme. If 100 percent of people describe the overall market or either buying or selling asfigure greatlyalso infuture prospects for buyers, reThe overall current real-estate dicates New Yorkers improved the sentiment score would equal 100. Conversely, universal extreme pessimism would score expect -100. the main positive in both the suburbs sentiment score among New overall real-estate market and the Scores measure and reflect the collective sentiment of residents of New York State. and Upstate, [but] they’re even Yorkers in the fourth quarter of value of property to increase over tilting the negative in New Yorkin consumer 2013 wassentiment 12.0, down points next consumers’ year. Currenttoscores report recent change while5.7 future scores the measure projected City, hence the headline pen- the from the third according Consumers change in sentiment as theythe approach coming year. quarter, In reviewing the Sentiment Scores lookalso first see at thethe presdulum is swinging,” Levy says. – Overall, to theSell, SRIand data. entfuture. as anCurrent improved time to sell relationship within each category Buy – between current and scores measure Both housing in- to the The figure also above the change with ainscore above breakeven sentiment towardsinventory the presentand relative recent pastwas while future projects sentiment from the currentat terest will influence the mar-frompoint where equal of 3.1,a positive down 9.1 points from last to one rates year from now. An increase a current score to apercentages future score denotes change in sentiment relative to therates present. Into every case when considering any of the sixpessisentimentquarter, scores, according a net positive number ket. Interest appear remain citizens feel optimistic and to SRI. 75349 The Food Bank Hungry Hurts ad for CNY Business Journal 10” x 6.375” Non bleed 4C ad indicates that the collective sentiment is such that people sense improvement while a negative net score predicts or measures a collective recognition of worsening. Today’s six scores are demonstrative of a strong real estate market that is currently situated within reach of the ‘thriving zone.’

At the same time, they also see it as a good time to buy with a positive score of 6.8, which is down 5.7 points from the third quarter. The overall current real-estate sentiment score among upstate New Yorkers in the third quarter was 15.3, down 4.1 points from last quarter. The overall future real-estate sentiment score was 14.1, down 2.8 points from the third quarter. A sentiment score of zero (0) in any category reflects a breakeven point at which the survey measured equal levels of optimism and pessimism among the population relative to the overall market, or buying or selling real estate, according to SRI. Scores can range from an absolute low of -100 to a high of 100, but scores below -50 or above +50 are both rare and extreme, SRI said. SRI conducted the survey of consumer real-estate sentiment throughout October, November, and December by random telephone calls to 1,994 New York state residents age 18 or older. As the sentiment scores are developed through a series of calculations, “margin of error” does not apply, SRI says. q Contact Reinhardt at

The SRI survey of Consumer Real Estate Sentiment was conducted throughout October, November, and December 2013 by random telephone calls to 1,994 New York State residents age 18 or older. As the sentiment scores are developed through a series of calculations, “margin of error” does not apply. For more information or comments, please call Dr. Don Levy at 518.783.2901. Data and charts can be found at . SRI is an independent, non-partisan research institute. SRI subscribes to the American Association of Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) Code of Professional Ethics and Practices.


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The Central New York Business Journal • 5

February 21, 2014


ULTA Beauty, a national cosmetics retailer, plans to open a new store at Destiny USA this year.

8.4% VS. 15.1%

ULTA Beauty to open store in Destiny USA this year

Lower upstate uninsured rate means more than 300,000 additional local people have health insurance.


SYRACUSE — ULTA Beauty, a national cosmetics retailer, plans to open a new store at Destiny USA this year. ULTA Beauty will take up 10,200 square feet on the first level of the shopping mall’s expansion, next to the Saks Fifth Avenue OFF 5th store, Destiny announced Feb. 13. The beauty chain, founded in 1990 and headquartered in Bolingbrook, Ill. (near Chicago), sells more than 20,000 beauty products for men and women. It carries a variety of cosmetics, fragrance, hair care, skin care, bath and body products, salon styling tools, and salon hair-care products. Each store also opens with a full-service salon, according to a news release from Destiny. “ULTA Beauty is a highly sought after brand for salon products at great prices and all in one place,” Rob Schoeneck, general manager of Destiny USA, said in the release. “They were a perfect fit for what we’re continuing to introduce within the expansion and across the facility.” As of Nov. 2, 2013, ULTA Beauty operated 664 retail stores across 46 states, according to its website, through which it also distributes its products. ULTA Beauty already has one Syracuse– area store in the Fairmount Fair shopping center in Camillus. It also has locations in New Hartford, Horseheads, and Vestal. q

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Across upstate New York, the uninsured rate from 2010–2012 averaged 8.4 percent, while nationally 15.1 percent were uninsured. This means that 324,000 more people had coverage here than if our region were at the national rate. We’re proud to offer significantly lower-cost private coverage than the national average, which helps more people afford coverage. In 2012, upstate New York’s under-65 health insurance coverage rate (91.3 percent) already exceeded the federal projection of the post-reform U.S. rate of 89 percent by the year 2023. We’re local people working together for healthier communities. To learn more visit:

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6 • The Central New York Business Journal

February 21, 2014

TSB: Fisher applauds his staff for the bank’s success, particularly the management team Continued from page 1

proceeds donated to the United Way, and participate in local parades. Celebrating your sesquicentennial with five generations of the same family guiding a company is a rare event. “Tioga State Bank has survived the Civil War, two World Wars, the Great Depression, the Great Recession, and numerous other events and milestones,” says TSB’s current president and CEO, Robert M. Fisher. “During these 150 years, there have been many changes in the social fabric of our communities … The one thing that hasn’t changed is our mission to provide community banking at its best.” The headwinds facing TSB today may be different, but no less difficult than in the past. “There is increased competition from other banks. We all have money to lend, but not enough borrowers, resulting in more competitive deals … Interest rates continue at historically low numbers causing compression in our margin,” Fisher says. “These low rates have a negative impact not just on TSB but also on the entire community-banking industry, which relies heavily on net-interest income for the majority of its profits … Credit unions continue to pursue more authority for commercial lending, meaning that they compete for many of the same deals we are pursuing … Technology is changing rapidly, requiring a constant investment in hardware, software, and training … [And] the regulatory burden continues to grow at a rapid pace.”

“Onerous” regulations

Fisher’s comment about the regulatory burden is best described as understatement. In an interview with The Business Journal in December 2012, he expressed concern about the recently established Consumer Finance Protection Bureau (CFPB), set up to protect the “little guy” from predatory financial firms. Since then, the CFPB has moved quickly to open the floodgates of regulation. In January of this year, the regulators issued new rules clarifying when a borrower is considered able to repay a mortgage. The regulations run to hundreds of pages of opaque and complex rules, which leave lenders liable to repay all mortgage payments and precludes foreclosure on a property if regulators determine that the rules were not followed properly. Two months ago, the CFPB reached a settlement with Ally Financial for $98 million, because the bank discrimi-


Bob Fisher, third from left, president and CEO of Tioga State Bank, stands among representatives of local food banks. The bank donated $20,000 at the inauguration of its year-long sesquicentennial celebration. The presentation was made at the home office in Spencer. nated against minority customers. How did the regulators determine this since Ally collects no information on the race or ethnicity of its customers? The answer was to extract data published by the U.S. Census Bureau using surname “geocoding” to infer the race of Ally’s customers. Based on this, minorities paid interest rates 0.29 percentage points higher than those who were probably not minority customers. Next on the drawing board are rules requiring financial firms to submit plans to the CFPB confirming that their staffs and suppliers are sufficiently diverse and new rules covering small businesses which, apparently, are now defined as “consumers.” “Banking regs are onerous,” laments Fisher. “All banks are held to the same standard. I have two full-time employees who spend all their time complying with regulations and many other staff spending time on compliance. It’s very expensive.” Despite these headwinds, TSB continues to be fiscally sound and profitable. “In its latest statement, TSB Services, Inc. [the holding company that owns the bank] posted assets of about $400 million and a net income of $4.4 million,” states Fisher. “We generated these numbers from 11 locations in Broome and Tioga Counties and 97 employees, who staff the bank and a subsidiary, Tioga State Investment Services (it offers a wide variety of financial planning options, life-, disability-, and longterm-care insurance plans, and brokerage services) … We achieved these numbers

Jessica Herrin CEO and Founder, Stella & Dot

even while mortgage-refinancing revenue and transactions dropped significantly, only to be offset by increased commercial lending. Our revenues are now tilting toward the commercial side over the retail side, 55 to 45 percent.” As for soundness, “Our tier-1 numbers have never been stronger,” asserts TSB’s president. “Historically, the bank has maintained an 8 percent ratio; today, the number is 11 percent. (Tier-1 capital is the core yardstick of a bank’s financial strength as measured by its common stock, retained earnings, and some preferred stock.) On top of that, BauerFinancial has given us a 5-star rating for the past 22 consecutive years as recognition of our fiscally conservative policies.” Fisher applauds his staff for the bank’s success, particularly the management team. In addition to Fisher as president, Anne E. McKenna is the CFO, George Bowen serves as chief lending officer, Lisa Welch is chief credit officer, Sharon Y. Yaple is a senior vice president responsible for retail banking and business development, and Christopher P. Powers is the senior vice president for human resources. Fisher also cites support from outside professional service providers: Hinman, Howard & Kattell, LLP for its legal work and the Syracuse office of The Bonadio Group for its accounting.

The future

TSB is well positioned for growth. “There

is no plan to issue an IPO,” muses Fisher. “The bank has always had a long-term focus on our direction. We don’t want to be guided by quarterly results. [The holding company] … currently is closely held with the majority interest owned by the Fisher family. This allows us to control our destiny and be flexible in our decision-making. Historically, our growth has been organic, except for a merger in 1961 and the acquisition of a branch in Waverly in 1991 from Fleet/Norstar. Our branch expansion has been largely de novo, which runs contrary to the industry, but we think it’s a less expensive way to grow in the long-term.” TSB’s strategy for growth is to constantly look for opportunities. “We made the move into Broome County 10 years ago. We studied the potential carefully and then committed the bank’s resources. If we grow geographically, I assume we are looking at contiguous areas, because we know the market best. Or we could buy a mortgage company if it were a good fit … Bottom line, however, is that we really understand banking best.” Fisher says he runs a “boring” bank. A visit to any of the branches or TSB’s website would suggest otherwise. Customers have access to all the technology and features of the “big banks” with online and mobile banking, online bill paying, ACH processing, telephone banking with 24hour access, and talking ATMs. If you are looking for investments, life-, disability-, long-term-care or health-insurance, tax or estate planning, retirement planning, or business planning, Tioga State Investment Services offers a wide range of options. “In 2014, we’re adding ‘TSB Mobile Deposit Anywhere’ (e-mail checks for deposit), smart ATMs that handle both checks and cash, and ‘iChat,’ where you can talk to a real person in our service center when you are online with a problem,” adds Fisher. Is there a sixth generation in the wings? Fisher’s son Josh is currently a sophomore at the University of Pittsburgh. Daughter Kate is a freshman at Nazareth College. Both have already worked at the bank when not in school. Daughter Allison, who is 10, has yet to intern at TSB. Fisher says it’s too early to determine whether the family tradition will reach six generations. The 46-year-old president of TSB resides with his wife, whom he met at the University of Notre Dame and married in 1991, in Owego. q Contact Poltenson at

February 21, 2014

input price increases, while the prices received index climbed two points to 15.0, suggesting a faster pace of selling price increases. Employment indexes were little changed, indicating a modest increase in employment levels and slightly longer workweeks. Indexes for the six-month outlook continued to convey fairly robust optimism about

of respondents reported that conditions improved over the month, while 25 percent reported that conditions worsened. The new orders index fell to near zero, declining eleven points to VXJJHVWLQJWKDWRUGHUVZHUHĂ€DW The shipments index fell thirteen points WRDQGWKHXQÂżOOHGRUGHUVLQGH[ZDV

the opposite direction, climbing two points to 15.0, suggesting that the pace of selling price increases picked up. Employment indexes littleJournal changed• 7 The Central New Yorkwere Business from last month and pointed to a modest improvement in labor market conditions. The number of employees index was 11.3, indicating a modest increase in employment levels, and the average Employment indexes “little workweek index inched up to were 3.8, changed.â€? the numbersuggesting They slightlyincluded longer workweeks. of-employees index of 11.3, indicating a “modestâ€? increase in employment levels, Six-Month Outlook Remains and the average-workweek index inched upOptimistic to 3.8, indicating “slightly longerâ€? Indexes for the six-monthtooutlook workweeks, according the New York continued to convey fairly strong Fed. optimism future businessoutlook conIndexes about for the six-month conditions. The index for expectedoptimism tinued to convey fairly strong general business conditions rose to 39.0, about future business conditions. and the index for future new orders robust. “They tend to be pretty climbed six points to 45.3, its highestsays. Optimistically, that’s good,â€? Wolken level in two years. The index for The index for expected generalfuture business prices paidrose fell to andthe the index index for fuconditions to 40.0, 39, and for new futureorders pricesclimbed received six heldpoints steadytoat45.3, ture 23.8. The future number of employees its highest level in two years. index rose forfor a second The index futureconsecutive prices paid fell to month, reaching 25.0, and the future 40, and the index for future prices received average workweek index fell to 7.5. held steady at 23.8. The index fell tenindex Thecapital futureexpenditures number-of-employees points to 2.5, a multiyear low, and the rose for a second consecutive month, technology spending index to 0.0. „ reaching 25, and the futurefell average-workweek index fell to 7.5. The capital-expenditures index fell 10 points to 2.5, a multi-year low, and the technology spending index fell to 0. The New York Fed distributes the Empire State Manufacturing Survey on the first day of each month to the same pool of about 200 manufacturing executives in New York. On average, about 100 executives return responses, it says. q

Empire State Manufacturing Survey declines to 4.5 in February MACNY president comments on the survey results BY ERIC REINHARDT JOURNAL STAFF


he Federal Reserve Bank of New York reported that its Empire State Manufacturing Survey general business-conditions index fell to 4.5 in February from 12.5 in January. That was well below the reading of 9 that economists had been expecting this month, according to Yahoo Finance data. However, since the index remained above zero, it indicates that business conditions improved “marginally� for New York manufacturers in February, according to the New York Fed. The monthly survey found 29 percent of respondents reported that conditions improved over the month, while 25 percent reported that conditions worsened. It’s important that the general business-conditions index stayed above zero, says Randy Wolken, president of the Manufacturers Association of Central New York (MACNY). “I get concerned when it starts to drop below zero and stays there,� Wolken says. The index is fluctuating, but remains positive, he adds. The Central New York Business Journal

General Business Conditions Seasonally adjusted Diffusion index 40 30 20 10 0 -10 -20 -30 -40











Note: The shaded area indicates a period designated a recession by the National Bureau of Economic Research.

asked if the recent winter storms may have played a role in the general business conditions for New York manufacturers. “The thing that I’ve heard ‌ is that because of the cold weather, there has been, depending on how you purchase energy, you might have seen a spike in your costs related to energy ‌ because cold months tend to cause some fluctuation in energy pricing when it comes to natural gas and electricity,â€? Wolken says. The survey also found the new-orders index fell to about zero, indicating that orders were “flat,â€? the New York Fed said in the survey summary on its website.

The shipments index declined 13 points to 2.1. The unfilled-orders index remained negative at -6.3. The prices-paid index, which had risen sharply in January, fell 12 points Federal Reserve Bank of New Yorkto 25, pointing to a “slowing pace� of input-price increases, according to the New York Fed. The prices-received index moved in the opposite direction, climbing two points to 15, suggesting a “faster pace� of sellingprice increases. “That’s helpful from a profitability [standpoint], and also as people are profitable, [they’re] more likely to invest and to hire,� Wolken says.

Contact Reinhardt at


Wednesday, April 9, 2014 DoubleTree Hotel - E. Syracuse Honoring Dr. James O. Marshall, DVM & Celebrating Major Milestones

35th Anniversary of ARISE 15 Anniversary of the Merger with Child & Family Services The Merger with Options for Independence th

Tickets & Information Available At: CHAMPION OF INDEPENDENCE AWARD Dr. James O. Marshall, DVM

Dr. Marshall, “Doc�, is a well-respected veterinarian and cherished member of the community. His extraordinary gift of a horse farm to ARISE in 1998 led to the creation of ARISE at the Farm. Thanks to Doc, thousands of lives have been touched over the past 16 years.

8 • The Central New York Business Journal


Business Journal C e n t r a l

N e w

Y o r k

Volume 28, No. 8 - February 21, 2014 NEWS Editor-in-Chief........................Adam Rombel Associate Editor.............Maria J. Carbonaro Staff Writers.............................. Eric Reinhardt ....................................................Norm Poltenson Contributing Writers................Traci DeLore Mei Wang Columnists.......................................Will Barclay Tom Morgan Production Manager.......................Erin Zehr Research Manager.................. Nicole Collins SALES Sr. Account Manager.......Mary LaMacchia Account Manager................... Daniel Buddie Marketing .......................BBB Marketing Inc. CIRCULATION Circulation Management....(315) 579-3927 Administrative Publisher..........................Norman Poltenson Chief Operating Officer......Marny Nesher Business Manager..................... Kurt Bramer

The Central New York Business Journal (ISSN #1050-3005) is published every week by CNY Business Review, Inc. All contents copyrighted 2014. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the written consent of the publisher. Cover Price $2 Subscription Rate $89 per year Call (800) 836-3539

HOW TO REACH US MAIL: Send letters to: Editor, The Central New York Business Journal 269 W. Jefferson St. Syracuse, N.Y. 13202-1230 EMAIL: PHONE: (315) 472-3104


February 21, 2014

The Governor Stands up for Upstate in de Blasio Skirmish

  he new mayor of the Big Apple,   Bill de Blasio, and New York Gov.   Andrew Cuomo are duking it out. The mayor wants to slap his city’s millionaires with extra taxes — to fund the pre-K program the teachers’ unions want. (Note: pre-K is not for the kiddies. It is for more jobs for dues-paying union members.) The governor says no way. He is not so crazy money about whacking NYC talk millionaires with even more taxes — because these ever-higher taxes drive the millionaires away. “Away” is a place from which this state collects zero taxes from them. The state has already lost millions per day in taxes the rich used to pay. Before they moved to “Away.” Cuomo also says that when we do tax NYC millionaires more, we should spread the money around the state. He says it’s a bad idea for the Big Apple to keep the new revenue for itself. In this case, for its own teachers. (Yeah, yeah. It is all supposed to be about the kids.) In the middle of these fisticuffs, the governor reminded the mayor that he, the gov., represents more than the kids in the Big Apple. He also represents kids in Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse, etc. Dear reader, if you don’t live in one of those cities, consider yourself part of the etceteras. Bottom line is as follows. The teachers’ unions have bought the mayor’s support for pre-K. They have bought the governor’s support for pre-K. The mayor says let’s pay for

tom morgan

these new union jobs by whacking the rich more. The gov. says let’s go slow on whacking the rich. Especially in this election year. Besides, if you loot the NYC rich, Upstaters deserve some of that loot. This makes the governor look good to Upstaters. He is a modern-day Robbing Hood. After all, he is trying to spread loot among us. He also makes us feel good. By showing us he even knows we exist. You need proof? He actually spoke the words “Buffalo, Rochester, and Syracuse.” Rumor is that he is in training to speak the words “Utica, Jamestown, and Geneva” later this year. Next year: Norwich, Watertown, and that really difficult one — Oswego. This is a big deal. My guess is that if you asked the new mayor to name 10 upstate cities, he could not. Try asking NYC guys in the state Assembly to name them. They would begin with Passaic and Hoboken. I give the governor full credit — for standing up for Upstaters in this skirmish. However, he would be the first to admit he can afford to do this. Just look at this through political lenses. The governor could fill the streets of the Big Apple with cow manure and not lose a vote. The upper East Side has some Republicans, but it is like a gated community. The rest of the city will vote Democrat no matter what the governor says or does. So what does he have to lose by standing up for Upstate? What does he have to lose by embarrassing the Big Apple’s new mayor? Absolutely nothing. That’s what he stands to

lose. So, Cuomo is in a sweet situation. He knows nobody will beat him in this year’s New York gubernatorial election. The Republicans might as well run my dog in the election. Meanwhile, by making nice to Upstaters, he can pick up extra votes. Unless my dog is more popular than I think, the gov. may win by a landslide. Which will give him more clout in the party. Maybe the extra clout will help him win the Democratic Party’s nomination for the presidency. You never know. Hillary could have a heart attack en route to the coronation. You know, when she is shocked by totally unexpected bombshell news — such as Bill has stopped chasing skirts. That might do it. And that would leave an opening for our governor.  I can see it now. Cuomo addressing the Democratic National Convention. “And when the loot came in — in my beloved state — what did I do? Unlike some leaders, I spread that loot to the kids in Buffalo. And the kids in Syracuse. And the kids in … Os … Otswa … Ostral … to the kids in Etcetera!” Here’s to you, governor. A toast from Etceteraville. With wine from the Finger Lakes. From in Morgan. q Tom Morgan writes about political, financial, and other subjects from his home near Oneonta, in addition to his radio shows and TV show. For more information about him, visit his website at

Regents’ Decision to Modify Common Core Overdue But Not Enough


  he New York State Board of Regents   approved changes to Common Core   recently, including delaying full implementation of the graduation requirements by five years — from 2017 to 2022. This means that instead of this year’s ninth graders being the first class to graduate with a Regents degree aligned with Common Core standards, it will now be fourth graders opinion — the class of 2022 — that will be the first class with a Common Core-aligned Regents diploma. The Board of Regents’ decision to delay full implementation of the graduation requirements was welcome news, but still doesn’t go far enough. Few take issue with the idea that we should raise learning standards in our schools, and the idea of the Common Core is to do just that. Indeed, 46 states including New York, adopted these standards. The problem in New York and elsewhere has been with the implementation of this curriculum. Last year, my colleagues and I held 11 statewide public forums on Common Core. At these hearings, parents, teachers, students, and administrators expressed their concerns with, among other things: (a) the “one size fits all” aspect of the common core; (b) the lack of resources to help implement these new standards; (c) faulty and incomplete teaching modules; (d) over-reliance on high-stakes testing; and (e) the general unfairness of evaluating teachers on students’ success with

will barclay

a curriculum that has been rolled out quickly and contains numerous flaws. The Board of Regents stopped short of removing the evaluation’s close tie-in with student performance. It stated it wanted the public to have more input and will comment on this aspect in April. Governor Cuomo criticized the Board of Regents for altering the course of Common Core and its tie-in with teacher evaluations. He believes they should be directly related. More will be decided on this in April. I believe that there are positives to the Common Core standards, including teaching our children to think critically. However, we need to delay, for a time, evaluating teachers and students on their performance under the Common Core. Along with a number of my colleagues in the Assembly, I am sponsoring legislation that would create an independent commission to thoroughly review Common Core. This commission will examine how the Common Core is operating, how it is being funded, and provide recommendations on how to improve Common Core. Once these improvements are made, we can then start evaluating students and teachers on their performances under Common Core. In the meantime, here are other changes to our education system that I support: n Eliminate the gap-elimination adjustment. Districts are being handed a big mandate with Common Core, on top of countless others they already have. We should fully restore funding for education that was removed in 2010 and that disproportionately hurt low-

wealth school districts. n Restrict use of student data. While I’m pleased the Board of Regents has put this on hold for a year, I question whether the extent of information being shared with third-party vendors like InBloom is necessary at all. n Reinstate the full value of individual educational plan (IEP) by allowing disabled students to be assessed based on their instructional level and not their age. In order to reinstate this policy, a waiver from the federal Department of Education is needed. I’m pleased that the Board of Regents requested this waiver recently. n Provide enough funding and time for professional development. Teachers are expected to know and teach all new material with Common Core and it should come with more training. n Create alternate pathways to a highschool diploma, including a career and technical education pathway by increasing state funds for BOCES. A full report was published following the public forums our conference held in the fall. You can see this report at doc/201479293/At-the-Educational-Crossroads. William (Will) A. Barclay is the Republican representative of the 120th New York Assembly District, which encompasses most of Oswego County, including the cities of Oswego and Fulton, as well as the town of Lysander in Onondaga County and town of Ellisburg in Jefferson County. Contact him at, or (315) 598-5185.

The Central New York Business Journal • 9

February 21, 2014

PEOPLE ON THE MOVE: new hires & promotions advertising agencies Eric Mower + Associates has hired Erin Mooney as a graphic designer. She creates both print and digital materials for a variety of applications. Prior to joining EMA, Mooney worked at a screen-printing business in North Syracuse, Mooney preparing client material for production. She received a bachelor’s degree in graphic design from the Rochester Institute of Technology.

construction The Syracuse Builders Exchange announced the Exchange Agency has added Tom Klamm to the company as an account executive. He has extensive experience in the employee-benefits industry as he marketed, sold, and serviced national managed visioncare plans through Davis Vision/Empire Vision to private companies, insurance firms, municipalities, and unions. In addition to Klamm’s 13 years with Davis Vision/Empire Vision, he also sold and serviced various types of group health, dental, life, and disability insurance benefit plans during his three years with First Niagara Benefits Consulting. Klamm has New York state life, accident and health insurance and New York state insurance broker’s licenses.

banking & finance Sandy Crawford has joined the business banking team at Tioga State Bank as a commercial services officer. She will be responsible for serving Tioga State Bank’s current and prospective commercial customers in the Southern Tier of New Crawford York and Northern Tier of Pennsylvania. Crawford received a bachelor’s degree from Cornell University’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. Before joining Tioga State Bank, she worked at Farm Credit, servicing borrowers.

education & training Cazenovia College recently announced the promotion of a Cazenovia Fund employee and the addition of two fundraising professionals in its division of Institutional Advancement. Ashlea Osborne has been Osborne promoted to director of the Cazenovia Fund. Prior to serving in this expanded role, she was the assistant director of the Cazenovia Fund and coordinator of the Young Alumni Program. Osborne graduated from Cazenovia College with a bachelor’s deRobb gree. Ellen Paccone Robb has joined the college as its leadership

gifts officer. She previously was employed at Syracuse University (SU), where she served as an administrative specialist for advancement at the L.C. Smith College of Engineering and Computer Science; she also worked as assistant editor for the Syracuse Engineer magazine. Prior to SU, Robb was a phone solicitor for the Muscular Dystrophy Association of CNY, president & executive director of the Southern Saratoga County Chamber of Commerce, executive director of the Tioga County Industrial Development Agency, and regional analyst & planning information specialist for the Southern Tier East Regional Planning & Development Board. She earned a bachelor’s degree in rhetoric and communications from SUNY Albany. Amanda Szymanski Wilson has joined the Cazenovia College development staff as its assistant director of the Cazenovia Fund. She is a graduate of Cazenovia College. Wilson was previously employed as a design consultant at Best Tile, Wilson and previously, she worked at the Cazenovia College Bookstore and was a visiting instructor for an interior design class at Cazenovia College.

employee benefits Harbridge Consulting Group announced that Christopher Reigle has joined the firm as a consultant in the healthcare practice. Previously the benefits manager for Bausch & Lomb, Inc., he had responsibility for all aspects of U.S. health & Reigle welfare and retirement plans and corporate oversight of global benefits. Reigle graduated from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute with a bachelor’s degree in management with a concentration in accounting.

financial services Morgan Stanley announced that Liz Ross, a founding partner of The Armory Group, has been promoted to vice president in Morgan Stanley’s Wealth Management office in Syracuse. She has been with Morgan Stanley Ross Wealth Management and its predecessor firm, since 2008.

health care Rural/Metro Medical Services announced the following staff promotions and appointments in its Central New York operation. Ian Walsh has been promoted to assistant shift commander. He began his Walsh career at Rural/Metro in 2008 as an EMTBasic, advancing through the ranks to become an EMT-intermediate, and eventually a paramedic in 2012. Walsh is a graduate of

the SUNY Upstate paramedic program and also holds a bachelor’s degree in linguistics and classical languages from Syracuse University. Christopher Doster has been promoted to assistant shift comDoster mander. He began his career at Rural/ Metro in 2010 as an EMT-basic, advancing through the ranks to become a paramedic in 2012. Doster is a graduate of the SUNY Upstate Paramedic Program and also holds a bacheApples lor’s degree in biomedical engineering from Syracuse University. Alton Apples has been promoted to EMTintern. He has worked for Rural/Metro since 2013 as a vehicle inventory supply technician. Apples completed his Morgan EMT-basic program at Rural/Metro in 2013. Elaine Morgan has been promoted to EMT-intern. She has been with Rural/ Metro since 2013 as a vehicle inventory supply technician. In addition to New York State EMT certification, Morgan holds National Registry EMT status. She completed her EMT-basic program in Colorado. Julianne Duf fy has been appointed director of clinical operations at St. Joseph’s Physicians. She brings extensive experience in direct patient care, administration, and operations management to Duffy her new role. Most recently, Duffy served as in a leadership role as SJLinked’s Director of Ambulatory EMR Implementation. She worked as a physician assistant in emergency medicine for Crouse Hospital, as well as a physician assistant in general surgery for St. Joseph’s Hospital. Duffy was an adjunct instructor in the Department of Physician Assistant Studies at Le Moyne College from May 2011 to August 2013. A graduate of Le Moyne College, she earned a bachelor’s degree in biology and a master’s degree in physician assistant studies. Duffy is licensed in New York State, and certified by the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants. She plans to continue practicing as a physician assistant.

hospitality Crowne Plaza Syracuse has promoted Linda Natoli to senior sales manager. She has been with the hotel since 2011 and has been able to successfully grow multiple market segments for the property. Natoli was awarded Natoli Sales Manager of the Year in 2011 and was a recipient of the 2013 CNYSME Excellence award. She has

been a member of the Richfield Hospitality Presidents Circle for 2011, 2012, and 2013.

insurance The Reagan Companies recently appointed James (Jim) Foster customer service director. He earned his master’s degree at SUNY Oswego.

law Legal Services of Central New York (LSCNY) has appointed three staff attorneys, a legal secretary, and a director of development at its Syracuse office, and one staff attorney in the Watertown office. Battaglia Jim Battaglia comes to LSCNY as director of development in the Syracuse office. He has served various nonprofit organizations in Central and Northern New York over the last 20 years both in executive operations and development capacities. Faber-Mosley Chris Faber-Mosley has joined as a staff attorney in Syracuse. She has worked for a year at the Legal Aid Society of Mid-NY preventing foreclosures in Otsego and Chenango counties. Prior to that, Faber-Mosley was a Peace supervising attorney for the Family Court Unit with the Legal Aid Society of Rochester. Rob Peace joins LSCNY as a staff attorney in the Watertown office. He has practiced in poverty law in the Watertown area since 1994. Lewis Liebler reLiebler joins LSCNY as a staff attorney in the Syracuse office. He previously worked at both LSCNY and LASMN. Liebler specializes in defending tenants being evicted and representing Section 8 tenants at termination hearings. He has Morrell also trained town and village justices and attorneys in landlord/tenant Law. Kim Morrell joined the organization as a staff attorney in the Syracuse office. A graduate of NYU School of Law, she has served as staff attorney at Central Jersey Legal Services Waldron in Trenton, focusing on tenant advocacy, public benefits, and consumer law. Previously she was an IOLA Fellow and then a staff attorney at the Legal Aid Society of Rockland County in New York City, where she practiced in the civil division. Jami Waldron joins LSCNY’s Continued on page 11

10 • The Central New York Business Journal

FEBRUARY 25 n CNY BEST Information Session from 5 to 6 p.m. at MACNY, 5788 Widewaters Parkway, DeWitt. This session is about the CNY ASTD CNY BEST Learning and Performance Program and the awards application process. Call (315) 546-2783 or email:

February 21, 2014

Business Calendar


n Women TIES Luncheon from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the meeting room at Joe’s Restaurant, 602 West Buffalo St., Ithaca. The topic will be: “The Key to Sales Success — Effective Follow-Up,” sponsored by the Women’s Business Center of NYS. This event will feature guest speaker Amanda Funk, president of Funk and Jackson, LLC in Cortland. The cost of the event is $29. For more information or to make reservations, visit or call (315) 708-4288.

The event includes three panelists, all Central New York women entrepreneurs, who have expertise in publishing and marketing their books. The event sponsor, Evelyn LiVoti, founder of ByDetail, will also provide advice. The four-hour event costs $45. For more information on the program or to make a reservation by Feb. 24, visit or call (315) 708-4288.


March 4

n Binghamton University SBDC WBO roundtable at 7:30 a.m. at 222 Water St., Binghamton. The discussion, titled “Course Corrections: Perk up the Bottom Line,” will be the topic of the next Binghamton University SBDC WBO roundtable. Kathy Pagnani, vice president of Java Joe’s Roasting Co., Inc., will be the speaker. The roundtable costs $10 per person, payable at the door. Advance registration is required. Call Binghamton University’s Small Business Development Center at (607) 777-4024 or e-mail: SBDC@binghamton. edu to register.

n Information Breakfast Sponsored by Vistage International from 7:30 to 9:30 a.m. at the Genesee Grand Hotel in Syracuse. The event will model a typical peer advisory group meeting experience by exchanging questions, ideas, and perspectives with some of the top business leaders in the Central New York area. No charge to attend. Register by calling Lou DeBartelo at (315) 246-2328 or email: loudebartelo@

n Tioga County Chamber of Commerce Lunch & Learn session from noon to 1:15 p.m. at the Owego Treadway Inn and Conference Center. The cost is $20 for Tioga County Chamber members and $25 for nonmembers. This will be an overview of business services available at the NYS Department of Labor. The speaker will be Lisa Doland, employer services representative, at the Department of Labor. For details and registration information, call (607) 687-2020.

FEBRUARY 27 n Greater Binghamton Chamber of Commerce After Hours event from 5 to 7 p.m. at Burger Mondays Bar & Grille at 23 Henry St., Binghamton. Chef/Owner Matt Jones is bringing the taste of New Orleans to Binghamton. The cost for chamber members is $7 in advance or $10 at the door; nonmembers pay $15 in advance or $20 at the door; nonprofit members $6 advance/$8 door; and nonprofit nonmembers $13 advance /$18 door. To register, contact Christine Stezzi at (607) 772-8860 or email: Reservations must be received and paid for by Feb. 24. n CNY SHRM Event: Diversity Matters from 7:30 to 10 a.m. at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Syracuse, near Carrier Circle in DeWitt. A panel of local experts will be sharing their best practices in the area of diversity. The cost is $40 for SHRM members, $50 for nonmembers. For more information, or to register, visit n Women TIES Special Seminar & Mini-Showcase – “Getting Your Work Published” from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at The Maplewood Inn, 7th North St., Liverpool.

March 5, 12, 19 n Business Startup Training Program from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. each day on March 5, 12, and 19 at 222 Water St., Binghamton. Offered by the Binghamton University Small Business Development Center (SBDC), participants will learn the tricks of the trade from professionals on how to assess, plan, and start up a business. For a class program and to enroll, contact Ginny Thompson at the SBDC (607) 777-4026, or email: Class size is limited.

March 7 n CNY BEST Information Session regarding the CNY BEST Learning and Performance Program and the awardsapplication process from noon to 1 p.m. at MACNY, 5788 Widewaters Parkway, DeWitt. Call (315) 546-2783 or email: info@cnyastd. org n CNY ASTD Breakfast Club from 7:30 to 9 a.m. at the Gem Diner, 832 Spencer St., Syracuse. This is an informal group for discussions on areas of expertise in learning and development roles. Topic: Change Management. Call (315) 546-2783 or email:

March 10 & 11 n Certified ScrumMaster Workshop at University College, 700 University Ave. Syracuse University’s TEDCenter, in partnership with PMI Institute’s Syracuse Chapter, is offering this two-day workshop. Scrum is an innovative approach to getting work done through collaborative teamwork. Kate Chajka, an engineer at Lockheed Martin, is a certified ScrumMaster. Participants who complete the workshop will be prepared to take the Scrum Alliance examination to become a certified ScrumMaster. For more information or to register for the workshop,

contact SU’s TEDCenter at (315) 443-5241, email:, or visit http://

March 12 n Leadership Mohawk Valley Follow the Leader Awards Dinner beginning at 5:30 p.m. at the Radisson Hotel in Utica. More event information can be found on the LMV website at

March 19 n CNY BEST Information Session from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. at MACNY, 5788 Widewaters Parkway, DeWitt. This is an informational session regarding the CNY BEST Learning and Performance Program and the awards-application process. For more information, call (315) 546-2783 or email: n Women TIES Greater Binghamton Event – “Obtaining a 360 Degree View of Your Business” from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Traditions at the Glen, 4101 Watson Blvd., Johnson City. The Event will feature Bonni Stacconi Phelps, founder of Baked Euphoria Cakes & Pastries. The cost is $29. To make reservations, visit n Veteran Business Conference – The 7th Annual Operation Start Up & Grow from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Onondaga Community College, Gordon Student Center. No cost to attend. The keynote speaker will be Lee Buttolph, USMC veteran and Buttolph Lumber Co. president. To register, visit: https://www.eventbrite. com/e/future-fund-speaker-series-an-overview-of-the-grantmaking-process-tickets10372567629

March 26 n Personal Knowledge Management discussion from 7:30 to 9:30 a.m. at The Palace Theatre, 2384 James St., Syracuse. CNY ASTD will discuss personal knowledge management, curation, and some useful tools. The cost is $25 for ASTD members, and $40 for nonmembers. To register, visit, call (315) 546-2783, or email: n G.R.O.W. in 2014 Tour — Getting Your Message Heard from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. at the Holiday Inn Express, 2666 Corning road, Horseheads. The event will offer information about sales and marketing, with speakers to include Rebekah LaMoreaux, president/CEO of the Watkins Glen Chamber of Commerce, and Ellen Williams, regional development director & field marketing CRM strategist at Constant Contact. To register, visit

March 27 n Dig Safely New York Excavator Safety Seminar from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at SRC

Arena at Onondaga Community College. This seminar is free and is regarded as one of the leading industry events for excavators, municipalities, safety professionals, utility personnel, landscapers, engineers, and other industry related stakeholders. To register, visit: n CNY ASTD Member Orientation from 7:30 to 9 a.m. at New Horizons Computer Learning Center, 6711 Towpath Road, DeWitt. This is a discussion of why and how to make the most of membership in CNY ASTD. No charge to attend. To register, visit For more information, call (315) 546-2783 or email: info@

APRIL 2 n F.O.C.U.S. Greater Syracuse event honoring Oren Lyons, Faithkeeper of the Onondaga Nation as the 2014 F.O.C.U.S Wisdom Keeper from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Nicholas J. Pirro Convention Center at Oncenter. The cost is $100 per person/ $150 for patron ticket. Contact Jennifer Creighton at jcreighton@syrgov. net or call (315) 448-8732 with any questions.

APRIL 4 n CNY ASTD Breakfast Club from 7:30 to 9 a.m. at the Gem Diner, 832 Spencer St., Syracuse. This is an informal group for discussions on areas of expertise in learning and development roles. Topic: Evaluating learning impact. For further information, call (315) 546-2783 or email:

May 20 n 2014 CCMR Symposium. Presented by the Cornell Center for Materials Research, the event will include lectures, poster session, and networking opportunities for industry and academia. The 2014 Sproull Lecture will be given by Dr. Albert Fert, winner of the 2007 Nobel Prize in Physics. He will be joined by speakers from IBM, NYU, MIT, and Cornell University. If you are interested in presenting a poster, contact the Industrial Partnerships office: Industry posters are welcome. Registration will be available at

ONGOING EVENTS n Every Tuesday, Cayuga Club Toastmasters from 6 to 7 p.m. at Cornell University, Ithaca, Rhodes Hall, 6th Floor, Conference Room #655. Free and easy parking is available nearby at Peterson Lot. For more information, contact Julia Reich, (315) 364-7190 or email: juliareichdesign@ n Every Tuesday, Gung Ho Referral Group from noon to 1:30 p.m. at Ruby Tuesday Restaurant, 3220 Erie Blvd., DeWitt. The cost is $10 and includes lunch. For more information, contact Paul Ellis (315) 475-0392 or email: Paul.Ellis@ or go to www. n Every Tuesday, Syracuse Business Connections from 3:30 to 5 p.m. at Hummel’s Office Plus, 6731 Old Collamer Road, DeWitt. The group meets to network and exchange referrals. For more informaContinued on the next page

The Central New York Business Journal • 11

February 21, 2014

BUSINESS CALENDAR (continued) tion, email: Deb Angarano at n Every Wednesday, Small Business Development Center at OCC from 4 to 6 p.m., Introduction to Business Startup at H-1 Hall. Please call 498-6070 or visit n Every Wednesday, Syracuse Business Networking from 6 to 7 p.m. at Barbieri’s Restaurant (upstairs level) located on Main Street in the village of North Syracuse. For more information, call Kim Bachstein at (315) 414-8223 or email: info@ SyracuseBusinessNetworking. com n First Wednesday of each month, Business Innovation Days meetings from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at The Tech Garden, 235 Harrison St., Syracuse. Entrepreneurs and small businesses can meet one-on-one with a counselor from the SBDC for advice and customized assistance opportunities. Scheduled by appointment, call (315) 474-0910 or email: n First and Third Wednesday of each month, Preferred Toastmasters from noon to 1 p.m. at Golden Artist Colors, 188 Bell Road, New Berlin. Contact Jonie Bassett at (607) 847-6154, x1217. n Fourth Wednesday of each month, Preferred Toastmasters from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. at Chenango County Council of the Arts, 27 W. Main St., Norwich. Contact Jonie Bassett at (607) 8476154, x1217. n Every Thursday, Empire

Statesmen Toastmasters meet at 6:30 p.m. at Ruby Tuesday on Erie Boulevard in DeWitt. For more information, visit or email: n Every Thursday, Free Business Counseling with SCORE from 10 to 11:30 a.m. at the Tioga County Chamber of Commerce, 80 North Ave., Owego. Contact the Tioga County Chamber of Commerce to make an appointment at (607) 687-2020. n Every Thursday, Liverpool Linguists from 7 to 8 p.m. First Thursday of every month at Liverpool Public Library and the remaining Thursdays at Liverpool First Methodist Church, 604 Oswego Road, Liverpool. For details, visit or call (315) 8842668 or 457-2581. n Every second and fourth Thursday of the month, The North Star Toastmasters from noon to 1 p.m. at C&S Companies, 499 Col. Eileen Collins Blvd., near Hancock Airport. For more information, contact Sandy Jurkiewicz at sjurkiewicz@centerstateceo. com or call (315) 470-1802. n Third Thursday of each month meet CNY ASTD Meet the Leadership Happy Hour from 5 to 7 p.m. at Coleman’s, 100 S. Lowell St., Syracuse. Monthly informal networking with the CNY ASTD leadership team and other learning and development professionals. For more information, call (315) 546-2783 or email: info@ n Every Friday, 40 Above: Workers in Transition from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. at the

Your local source for business news and information

library in North Syracuse (NOPL) at 100 Trolleybarn Lane, North Syracuse. Helping workers/job seekers aged 40 and above in search of work. Contact John A. Cruty at (315) 569-3964, or at n Every Friday, Tip Club of Syracuse, at the Sheraton Syracuse University Hotel, 801 University Ave., Syracuse, 8 to 9 a.m. Call Bernie Bregman at (315) 472-3903 or email: n First Friday of each month, Toolkit Day with SCORE by appointment at The Tech Garden. Counselors provide free, confidential, individual business mentoring to prospective or current business owners. For more information or to make an appointment, contact Lynn Hughes at (315) 579-2862 or email Lynn@TheTechGarden. com n Every second and fourth Friday of each month, The SUN Group (Sustainable Upstate Network) meets from 7:30 to 9 a.m. at Tony’s Family Restaurant, 3004 Burnet Ave., Syracuse. For more information, contact Andy Picco at (315) 657-0135 or email: n CNY Connects is a networking organization offering 12 groups from which to choose. If you are interested in learning more, contact Amy Kaschel of AK Consulting at or call (315) 882-6127 or visit To have your meetings or events in the Business Calendar, email them to


CNYBJ CANVASS Here are the results of the latest poll on

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PEOPLE ON THE MOVE (continued) Syracuse office as a legal secretary. She has many years of experience working in local-area law offices.

MEDIA Clear Channel Media + Entertainment in Syracuse has two new additions to its sales team. Kelsi ClearyHammarstedt is taking the position of outside account executive. She has spent a number of years working in cusHammarstedt tomer service and sales and has a proven track record of delivering innovative marketing plans. Sam Vecchio has taken on the role of local sales manager. He brings nearly two decades of marketing and advertising experience and Vecchio a proven track record of success to his new position. Throughout his career, Vecchio has helped countless businesses and organizations across Central New York. Kelsey Gorney has joined Clear Channel’s advertising traffic department Gorney as a traffic manager. She will schedule and place radio advertising on behalf of Clear Channel’s clients. Gorney is a graduate of SUNY Fredonia, and has worked for Clear Channel since 2010 in the promotions department.

TECHNOLOGY The Central New York Technology Development Organization (TDO) has promoted Cindy Oehmigen to MEP Center director. She has been with TDO for nine years. Prior to that, Oehmigen held management positions in manuOehmigen facturing, engineering, and health care with Allis-Chalmers, Cooper Crouse Hinds, Carrier Corporation, and Loretto. She holds a bachelor’s degree in industrial and management engineering from the University of Iowa and an MBA from Syracuse Finke University. Also, two new employees have joined TDO. Mark Finke has joined as senior project manager and Bob Kocik as project engineer. Prior to joining TDO, Finke held management positions with Eastman Kodak, Palmer Food Services, and ReckittBenckiser. He Kocik holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from SUNY Geneseo, a Ph.D. in biological sciences from Illinois State University, and a master’s degree in education from Roberts Wesleyan College. Kocik’s 19 years of manufacturing experience include leadership positions with PPC, New Process Gear, and Service Merchandise. He has a degree in science business administration from Columbia College and holds several key certifications. q


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12 • The Central New York Business Journal

February 21, 2014

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Small Business/ Buy Local


Renewal by Andersen expands Solvay Glass service territory to Southern Tier by eric reinhardt journal staff

SYRACUSE — Solvay Glass, LLC, which also serves as the local retailer for Renewal by Andersen, is now covering a larger area for those Andersen products in the southern part of New York. Solvay Glass, located at 735 Erie Blvd. West in Syracuse, sells and installs glass for windows and doors. Renewal by Andersen this past summer informed the local company that it was expanding its service territory to include the Southern Tier all the way to the Pennsylvania border. Renewal by Andersen is the custom, full-service division of Andersen Windows, Inc., which is part of Bayport, Minn.–based Andersen Corp. Solvay Glass got word at “the end of July of last year,” says Lisa Stratton, sales and marketing director. “We were elated. We celebrated.”


SOLVAY GLASS, LLC 735 Erie Blvd. West Syracuse, NY 13204 Phone: (315) 422-3500 n Type of business: Sells and installs glass for windows and doors n Year Founded: 1964 n Employees: 35 (including eight part-time employees) n Company Owner: Charles (Chuck) Cometti

The firm’s coverage area now stretches to the Pennsylvania border and includes Binghamton, Endicott, Endwell, along with Tioga County, and Elmira. For that same product line, the Solvay Glass territory extends north to Watertown, east to Utica–Rome, and west to Waterloo, according to Stratton. Prior to last summer, the southern end of its service area for Renewal by Andersen only stretched as far as Cortland Renewal by Andersen based its decision to expand Solvay Glass’s coverage area on customer feedback, Stratton says. Andersen forwards a survey to customers who purchase one of its products, a survey that Stratton describes as “everything.” The homeowners then complete the survey privately and send it back. “We measured-up in their eyes of what was important [which is, again,] protecting that brand promise,” Stratton says of Renewal by Andersen. Solvay Glass has an overall customer satisfaction rating of 92 percent, “which is impressive in the remodeling/home improvement industry,” Stratton adds in an email.   Stratton describes Renewal by Andersen as the “custom, fullservice division of Andersen Window and Door,” meaning the product isn’t available at a bigbox store. A contractor cannot purchase the product at Solvay Glass. Renewal by Andersen partnered with Solvay Glass in May 2008 because it had a showroom


Charles (Chuck) Cometti (left), owner of Solvay Glass, LLC and Lisa Stratton, director of sales and marketing, stand inside the firm’s showroom at 735 Erie Blvd. West in Syracuse. Solvay Glass, which also serves as the local retailer for Renewal by Andersen, is now serving a larger territory for products within that division of Bayport, Minn.-based Andersen Corp. for the product and had been in good standing with the Better Business Bureau for more than 25 years, Stratton says. In addition, Renewal by Andersen requires a full-time service department and its certification of Solvay Glass’ installers and production manager. “The reason for that is a faulty installation will void the warranty. Hence, the reason that Renewal by Andersen won’t let a contractor come in off the street and purchase the product,” Stratton says. In its partnership with Renewal by Andersen, Solvay Glass is required to provide projections, including revenue, sometimes projected out as far as five years. Solvay Glass also reports to Renewal on a “weekly basis,” including number of customers to whom the company has spoken, number of times it presented a

price, and what the pricing structure looked like. “So, they really do have a pulse on our company as far as how we’re pricing, what we’re pricing,” Stratton says. With the extended territory, Solvay Glass is considering possibly opening a location in the Southern Tier, but as of now, has “not pursued it,” she notes. “That’s at least a year to a yearand-a-half down the road.”

About the company

Founded in 1964, Solvay Glass operates in a 32,000-squarefoot facility that includes 25,000 square feet of warehouse space and 7,000 square feet of showroom floor and office space. The company owns its building on Erie Boulevard West. Solvay Glass currently employs 35, which includes eight parttime employees, Stratton says.

The figure also includes four new full-time employees who started with the firm this year to accommodate the expansion of its Renewal by Andersen territory. Solvay Glass serves a customer base that is 95 percent residential and 5 percent commercial, Stratton says. She describes Solvay Glass as a $5 million company and offered the same figure when asked about a revenue projection for 2014. When asked if the expanded Renewal by Andersen territory might boost that annual-revenue figure, Stratton replied, “I would hope.” Charles (Chuck) Cometti, son of company founder Henry (Hank) Cometti, is the sole owner of Solvay Glass. q Contact Reinhardt at

2B • The Central New York Business Journal


February 21, 2014

Real-estate agency changes name, brings focus back to local business BY TRACI DELORE CONTRIBUTING WRITER

NEW HARTFORD — After 25 years of affiliation with Prudential Real Estate, one local real-estate agency has dropped the affiliation and changed its name as it hones its focus on serving the local area. The former Prudential Joseph R. Carucci Real Estate agency is now known as Preferred Properties of the Mohawk Valley, Inc., says Edward Jekel, president and broker of record at the agency. It made sense 25 Jekel years ago to affiliate with Prudential, he says, because it gave the agency additional resources such as the ability to market its listings nationally through Prudential. Recent changes, however, changed Jekel’s view of things. First, Prudential sold off its real-estate division about two-and-a-half years ago to a company called Brookfield Asset Management, Inc. Brookfield, in turn, was recently acquired by Berkshire Hathaway. The changes in ownership, Jekel says,

made it a good time to review the franchise and see if it still made sense. Factoring in other changes, such as how the Internet and technology have affected the real-estate industry, made Jekel wonder what a franchise with Berkshire Hathaway would do for his agency, his agents, and the area. A few initial talks with Berkshire Hathaway about renewing the franchise ultimately cemented Jekel’s decision not to renew as the company urged him to consider consolidating with franchises in Syracuse, Albany, or Buffalo to achieve some economies of scale. “We’re a very small and unique area,� Jekel says of the Mohawk Valley. “Our market is different from Syracuse. Our market is different from Albany. Our market is different from Buffalo.� Real estate is very local, he says, and he contended that the best way his agency could continue to serve the area was as a locally owned company without an outside franchise. Jekel opted not to renew his franchise, which ended on the last day of 2013. On Jan. 1, Jekel debuted Preferred Properties of the Mohawk Valley and says he is already seeing benefits from being franchise-free. “I have absolutely no re-

grets,� he says. “I think it’s the right way to go.� Since the change, Jekel and his 14 agents have been working hard. “I think we changed 125 signs,� he says. They’ve also been working to change the website, banking information, letterhead, business cards, and more. And through all that work, Jekel saw one of the first benefits of dropping the franchise. When the agency was affiliated with Prudential, all purchases went through Prudential-approved vendors. All of those vendors, Jekel notes, are located outside the region. With his first purchases away from the franchise, Jekel opted to shop local for his new signs, business cards, and letterhead, spending more than $10,000 with Valley Signs in Clayville. While the name has changed and the signs are new, one thing that remains the same is Jekel’s team of agents and all the experience and expertise they bring to the job. “We know the area,� Jekel says. That will be a benefit through an anticipated boom as development continues at the nanocenter at SUNY Institute of Technology at Utica/Rome. That development could bring as much as $17 billion and 10,000 new jobs to the area over the

“We’re a very small and unique area,� Jekel says of the Mohawk Valley. next decade, Jekel says, and that means lots of people new to the area and looking for a home. And with a new business partnership with ListHub, a nationwide listing management platform, Preferred Properties of the Mohawk Valley can still have its listings showcased nationally. “We’re going back to our roots,� Jekel says. “We want to be a driving force in the community.� To help spread the word about the name change, the agency mailed out letters to its clients and sent out postcards to residents in key areas. Jekel says the agency will host an open house sometime in the spring to coincide with the start of the busy season. “We actually see a good year,� he predicts for 2014. “We see sales up.� While he doesn’t expect much commercial activity until later in the year, Jekel says he expects a “good and strong� residential market. Headquartered at 600 French Road, New Hartford, Preferred Properties of the Mohawk Valley ( was founded by Joseph R. Carucci, who passed away in 2010. q Contact The Business Journal at

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The Central New York Business Journal • 3B

small business/buy local

February 21, 2014

NFIB: Small-business optimism begins 2014 ‘slightly up’ by eric reinhardt journal staff


  mall-business optimism started the   year at 94.1, which is “slightly up”   from December but “well below” the pre-recession average of 100. That’s according to the National Federation of Independent Business’ (NFIB’s) latest index of small-business optimism released Feb. 11. The NFIB, which advocates for the nation’s small businesses, is headquartered in Nashville, Tenn. A net 15 percent of owners indicated optimism about their sales expectations in January, up 7 percentage points from December. In its news release, the NFIB called that increase “huge.” Respondents also indicated the “strongest” job-creation plans since 2007, the organization said. However, small-business owners continue finding inventories “too high” and sales and earnings trends continued to “deteriorate” for more owners, the NFIB said. Overall, the index is still “just treading water,” the federation said. Employment starts 2014 over “a million below” its peak in January 2008 and prospects for a major recovery in jobs are “not good,” William (Bill) Dunkelberg, chief economist at the NFIB, said in the news release. “NFIB labor-market indicators have recently seen a return to normal (but not expansion) levels, [which is] encouraging

in that reversals are now less likely. The average increase in workers per firm has also risen in recent quarters, indicating new job creation. However, there are far fewer firms hiring workers than there were in 2007 and many of those still in existence have downsized,” Dunkelberg said. As for the optimism on a statewide level, New York small-business owners are hearing some “mixed messages” in Albany, which sort of has them “cautious, just in general,” says Michael Durant, director of NFIB New York. “Within the governor’s budget, you have business tax cuts, which are good, but, unfortunately, they don’t include a personalincome component,” Durant says. The majority of small businesses are chapter S corporations, meaning the business owner files business taxes through his or her personal tax return, he adds. It is also an election year, and small business “tends to be a popular buzz term” in such years, Durant contends. He also believes that NFIB members need to see “positive action as opposed to just being used as a sound bite.”

Job creation

The NFIB’s monthly optimism index examines several indicators, including job creation. NFIB owners increased employment by an average of 0.12 workers per firm in January (seasonally adjusted), representing half the December reading, but a

Small Business Optimism Index Up a slight 0.2 points in January to 94.1, but Main Street is still cautious about the future Change Index Component Net% from Dec. -2


s t t

Plans to increase employment


Plans to make capital outlays


Plans to increase inventories

4 -1

Expect economy to improve



Expect real sales higher



Current inventory


Current job openings


s s t


Expect credit conditions



Now a good time to expand



Earnings trends


t t



source: nfib

“solid” number, the NFIB said. made no net change in employment. Seasonally adjusted, 13 percent of the At the same time, 46 percent of the ownowners reported adding an average of 3.7 ers hired or tried to hire in the last three workers per firm over the past few months, months. Of that number, 38 percent (which a figure that fell 1 point from December, represents 83 percent of those trying to according to the Index. hire or hiring) reported few or no qualified Offsetting that number, 11 percent of applicants for open positions, the NFIB NFIB owners reduced employment (up said. 1 point) an average of 3.3 workers, which is up 1 percentage point from December. Further analysis Besides job creation, the optimism index The combination of the two components produced the seasonally adjusted net gain also examines several additional indicators. of 0.12 workers per firm overall. The remaining 76 percent of owners See optimism, page 6B

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4B • The Central New York Business Journal

small business/buy local

The rebranding of The Business Journal and what’s behind it? Q: Why has The Business Journal rebranded as The Business Journal News Network (BJNN)? A: The Central New York Business Journal has been a mainstay in the CNY business community for 28 years. As the distribution of news and information has become more digital, so have we. The print edition will continue to be the only dedicated, credible source of business news, information, and research data in the region. But we also want to highlight the myriad ways that we are delivering news and information to people the way VIEWPOINT they want to receive it. BJNN is an umbrella name for all of these delivery vehicles. Digitally, we report breaking business news on and offer email news alerts to subscribers that have chosen to receive their news in their email, twice a day, through our Coffee Break and Daily News Alerts products. BizEventz, the business events division of BJNN, will also continue to provide our business community with opportunities to be recognized and network with others. We feel that the bundling of all these

The Business Journal News Network

entities into one package, BJNN, makes it easier for our advertisers, marketers, and underwriters to reach their target audience. It also allows our subscribers and readers to receive the extensive news, information, and data we provide the way they want it. Q: What is involved with this initiative and why is it important? A: BJNN teamed up with local advertising agency, ABC Creative Group. Travis Bort, owner and creative director, says, “The Business Journal has been a credible and valuable resource for all business leaders in our community. I am excited by the idea of them offering many mediums for readers to be able to receive the news while also offering a high-end, targeted marketing vehicle as an advertiser for my business as well as my clients. ABC joined with the BJNN leadership to determine the goals of the rebrand, and after strategizing,

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decided we could not lose the recognition and credibility of the existing products in the rebrand. We want people to know it is all the same great products and people, just a more complete offering.� Q: How will the Central New York business community benefit from BJNN? A: No matter what product or service of BJNN you use, this will have a positive effect on you. As a subscriber to The Business Journal, you can have the flexibility to read the news the way you want it: in the weekly print edition, the daily email alerts, or, or all of them. The online capabilities allow you to get up-to-the minute business news. As an advertiser, it allows you to reach a very targeted audience through print, digital, and events. It offers a solution, not just a product. We can now offer you a total marketing package. q

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ITHACA — The Downtown Ithaca Alliance (DIA) recently presented its annual Best of Downtown Awards. DIA board president Michael C. Cannon and executive director Gary Ferguson honored Ithaca business leaders with plaques at a gala dinner on Feb. 3. Mockingbird Paperie, previously known as Ithacards and rebranded by Suzanne Loesch in January 2013, received the Retail Business of the Year honor. The store’s product line features unique cards and gifts, fine stationery, decorative papers, writing instruments, and a line of wedding invitations, according to a DIA news release. The other winners included the following: • Economic Development Projects of the Year: Breckenridge Place and Seneca Way • Community Achievement Award: Jean McPheeters, president of the Tompkins County Chamber of Commerce since January 2000 • Emerging Business of the Year: Norabloom Botanicals • Business Achievement Award: Jennifer Engel, owner of the popular children’s toy and clothing store Cat’s Pajamas in the Dewitt Mall in Ithaca. • Tourism Achievement Award: Argos Inn.

The Central New York Business Journal • 5B


February 21, 2014

ULTIMATE ARRIVAL: The business employs 14 drivers, including 13 who are school-bus qualified Continued from page 1

tract. And while the first contract didn’t take long, finding operating space for the business “took us some time,” Sloma says. The principals needed a setting that provided both office space and a place to house and maintain motor-coach buses. “So, we had to find overhead doors that we could drive in and also raise the buses to work underneath them. So, it was challenging,” Sloma explains. Jeff Kelsen, who owns Allegiance Realty, LLC at 920 Spencer St. in Syracuse, helped broker Ultimate Arrival’s lease, according to Sloma. The property owner is listed as Antonio D’Agostino, according to county property records. Ultimate Arrival purchased and uses a fleet of vehicles that includes two customized, 56-passenger motor coaches; two mini-coaches, including a 26-passenger shuttle with a flat screen TV and restroom and a larger 32-passenger shuttle; along with a 10-passenger Mercedes Sprinter van, a Lincoln crossover, and two Lincoln Navigators. Ultimate Arrival found its motor coaches at the Orlando, Fla. location of College Park, Ga.–based Alliance Bus Group, Inc.

The Syracuse business also purchased some of its smaller sports-utility vehicles in Rhinebeck, N.Y. Ultimate Arrival provides shuttle service for student teachers from Syracuse University’s School of Education to their assigned locations in the Jamesville-DeWitt and Liverpool school districts, along with shuttle services for Christian Brothers Academy as well, Sloma says. Ultimate Arrival is currently talking with Greek Peak Mountain Resort about partnering to attract Canadian tourists. The company also wants to provide trips to sporting events, New York City excursions, and multi-day trips. The business employs 14 drivers, including 13 who are school-bus qualified, according to Sloma. The drivers are considered part-time employees, she adds. The firm also employs a full-time master mechanic and a full-time compliance manager. Ultimate Arrival hopes to add drivers as demand increases. The three partners self-funded the $300,000 needed to launch the business, Sloma says. Through more than five months of operation, Ultimate Arrival has generated close to $300,000 in revenue. Sloma projects a revenue figure of $1 mil-

lion by the end of 2014.


Forming Ultimate Arrival

Sloma was working for DeWitt–based Lighthouse Marketing, Inc. in April 2013 when Don Kuepper suggested they pursue the transportation business. Kuepper had retired from the U.S. Postal Service in March 2009, having spent his final three years working at a distribution facility in Hartford, Conn. During the following winter, a friend suggested Kuepper learn how to drive a bus and work for Caz Limo, Inc. “I loved it. I was living the dream,” he says, noting he made trips to 17 New York Yankees baseball games in 2010. The company eventually promoted Kuepper to operations manager. “In doing so, I got an in depth look at how the transportation industry worked,” he says. He discussed the possibility of launching a similar type of business with his son, Ryan, who suggested the charterbrokering division. Ryan Kuepper is currently the chief pilot for Syracuse–based Citation Jet with experience in commercial, corporate, and charter-aircraft service. The elder Kuepper suggested adding in

ULTIMATE ARRIVAL, LLC 971 Spencer St. Syracuse, NY 13204 Phone: (315) 396-0209 Web: n Type of business: Charteredtransportation company n Year Founded: 2013 n Employees: 2 full time, 14 part time n Company Owner: Jessica Sloma, majority owner; Donald Kuepper, Ryan Kuepper, minority owners

some ground-transportation options. He eventually brought the idea to Sloma, who left her most recent job last June. “And, with several conversations, the idea quickly formed. And then the divisions quickly formed, so that was midApril. And by the end of May, we had the business plan almost wrapped up and the LLC formed,” she says. q Contact Reinhardt at

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6B • The Central New York Business Journal

small business/buy local

February 21, 2014

How Are Businesses Treated in a Divorce Y

  ou may be considering getting   married soon. You may be the   owner of a family business that you want to keep in the family. You may be married but unhappy in your marriage and you may be wondering what might happen to your business if the marriage were to end in divorce. In today’s modern society where about half of all marriages end in VIEWPOINT divorce, these questions may be an important part of your business planning. You engage in tax planning, retirement planning, and succession planning, but divorce planning may also apply to your situation. Thankfully, a divorce may not be a sure thing, and optimistically most marriages would last forever, but for better or for worse, some marriages do not. So what may become of the closely held or family business upon the end of a marriage? In New York, the process of dividing assets and debts upon divorce is known as “equitable distribution.” The rules by which assets and debts are divided are provided through various state statutes and rules, as well as court precedent. The phrase “equitable distribution” is not particularly revealing as to what, in reality, may happen to a business upon divorce. The term “equitable” refers to New York’s approach of dividing up assets and debts according to what is fair rather than a mechanical approach, such as a pure 50/50 split, which may be used in other states. Very generally speaking, all assets and debts acquired during the marriage are considered “marital property” and are subject to being divided under New York’s “equitable distribution” laws. If a business was founded during a marriage using marital funds, it will likely be considered “marital property.” If the value of a business acquired before the marriage increases during the marriage, the increased value may

david tamber & richard alderman

be considered a marital asset. For example, under New York’s equitable-distribution approach, in some circumstances it may be “fair” or “equitable” to equally divide various marital assets and debts. But in other situations “equity” or “fairness” may indicate that the businessowner spouse get more than half of the value of the business. Ultimately, though, what you want to know is whether the business (or its value) will be divided, and how much money each spouse may be entitled to receive. As you might expect, many cases settle without going to court. But ultimately, cases that do not settle go to before a New York State Supreme Court judge. Whether a case is resolved through negotiations and settlement or through a trial before a judge, the outcome is typically based upon a variety of factors and on a step-by-step analysis.


Is there a business that is an asset? For example, where a spouse grows plants in a garden and sells them at a farmers’ market on a few weekends, there may not be a “business asset” that has value subject to being divided with the other spouse. In contrast, a farmer who grows and sells substantial amounts of produce to supermarkets clearly has a “business asset” that is subject to division. One way to look at this is whether the “business” could be sold to another as a going concern.


The next step is to classify whether the business is a marital asset subject to equitable distribution or whether the business is the “separate” property of the businessowner spouse. For example, if a business was purchased during the marriage with funds the spouses earned during the marriage, then the business would be a “marital” asset subject to being divided. But what if the business was started and fully developed

before the spouses were married? Then the value of the business that existed before the spouses were married would be considered “separate” property. The process for differentiating between the pre-marital, “separate” portion and the marital portion may involve valuing the business as of the date the spouses got married, and on the date in which one of the spouses files for divorce. The difference between the two figures would be the “marital portion” of the business, whereas the value of the business as of the date the parties were married represents the premarital, “separate” portion. The pre-marital, “separate” portion of the asset would generally not be divided between the spouses, whereas the “marital” segment would likely be divided between the spouses.


Equitable distribution requires that the value of the business be determined so that the spouses know what there actually is to be divided. In many ways, the process of valuing a business for a divorce is not much different than valuing the business for other purposes. The intention is to determine the fair market value of the marital portion of the business subject to equitable distribution. Often, this involves retaining an expert, an accountant with expertise in valuing businesses. Sometimes, both parties agree on using one expert accountant, but both parties have the right to retain their own expert, which happens when the spouses cannot agree on one expert, or when one spouse disagrees with the valuation of one expert. The expert, or experts, will use typical accounting methods to determine the value of a business, such as the “income approach,” the “market approach,” and/or the “asset approach.” Different methods may apply to different types of businesses. In valuing a business, the expert accountant might need other experts to value various components or business assets such as inventory, real estate, equipment, or machinery. At

the very least, the valuation expert will need to review all of the business’s financial documentation to determine the value of the business.


This term refers specifically to the process of determining what portion or percentage of the value of the business each spouse may be entitled to receive. That explanation certainly oversimplifies how each spouse’s respective portions may be determined. New York’s equitable-distribution law sets forth about 14 specific factors for courts to consider in determining each spouse’s share upon divorce. Some of the factors include, for example: n How long the spouses were married, and their ages and health n The income, assets, and debts that each party had when they were first married n Whether a spouse may lose pension rights or inheritance rights from the other spouse n Whether one spouse may have to pay maintenance (“alimony”) to the other, n The direct or indirect contributions of the “non-business owner” spouse to the business and to the family n The probable future financial circumstances of each party Substantial court precedent fleshes out how these and other factors are applied in various circumstances. These factors are then applied in guiding negotiations and may ultimately be applied by a judge if a case goes to trial. We hope this article provides you with some information that you find helpful, but please understand that is only a cursory introduction to the complicated issue of dealing with a business in a divorce. q David Tamber and Richard Alderman are attorneys with Alderman and Alderman in Syracuse. Contact them at (315) 422-8131 or email: dtamber@aldermanandalderman. com

OPTIMISM: Earnings trends “worsened” 5 percentage points in January Continued from page 3B

Less than one quarter, or 22 percent, of all owners reported job openings they could not fill in the current period, which is down 1 percentage point. The figure suggests that the unemployment rate did not change much in January, the NFIB said. Another 14 percent reported using temporary workers, unchanged from December. The net percent of all owners (seasonally adjusted) reporting higher nominal sales in the past three months compared to the

prior three months “deteriorated” 2 points to a net negative 10 percent, according to the NFIB. The index found 14 percent of owners still cite weak sales as their top business problem, the lowest figure reported since June 2008. The monthly peak was 34 percent, set in early 2010, according to the NFIB. Seasonally unadjusted, 20 percent of all owners reported higher sales (last three months compared to prior three months, up 2 points) and 34 percent reported lower sales (up 6 points), not a very strong report, the NFIB said.

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Earnings trends “worsened” 5 percentage points in January, falling to a net negative 27 percent. The NFIB defines the indicators as the “net percent reporting quarter to quarter earnings trending higher or lower.” Not seasonally adjusted, 15 percent reported profits higher quarter to quarter, which is down 1 percentage point, and 43 percent reported decreased profits, which is down 6 percentage points. The percent of owners planning capital outlays in the next 3 to 6 months fell 2 points to 24 percent.

The index found 8 percent that characterized the current period as a good time to expand facilities (down 2 points). Of the 59 percent that said it was a bad time to expand, 27 percent still blamed the political environment, suggesting that at least for those owners, “Washington is preventing their spending on expansion.” The net percent of owners expecting better business conditions in six months was a net negative 11 percent, unchanged from December, the index found. q Contact Reinhardt at

The Central New York Business Journal • 7B

February 21, 2014

THE LIST Research by Nicole Collins (315) 579-3911 Twitter: @cnybjresearch

TECHNOLOGY-BASED COMPANIES Ranked by No. of CNY Employees 2012 Revenue











Pall Corp. 3643 State Route 281 Cortland, NY 13045 (607) 753-6041/ SRC, Inc. 7502 Round Pond Road North Syracuse, NY 13212 (315) 452-8000/






Anaren, Inc. 6635 Kirkville Road East Syracuse, NY 13057 (315) 432-8909/




i3 Electronics, Inc.3 1093 Clark St. Endicott, NY 13760 (866) 820-4820/ Bristol-Myers Squibb Company 6000 Thompson Road East Syracuse, NY 13057 (315) 432-2000/ Saab Sensis Corp. 85 Collamer Crossing East Syracuse, NY 13057 (315) 445-0550/ Hardinge Inc. One Hardinge Drive Elmira, NY 14902 (607) 734-2281/


1. 2.

Upcoming Lists:


March 7

Commercial Printers


Economic -Development Agencies


Architectural Firms and Landscape Architectural Firms


March 14 March 21 March 28

Janitorial Service Companies


10. 11. 12. 13. 14. NOTES 1. Lockheed Martin employee count includes those in its Salina and Owego plants.

Name Address Phone/Website

CNY Employees



Lockheed Martin Mission Systems & Training 1801 State Route 17C Owego, NY 13827 (607) 751-2200/ BAE Systems 1098 Clark St. Endicott, NY 13760 (607) 343-6141/ Welch Allyn 4341 State Street Road Skaneateles Falls, NY 13153 (315) 685-4100/ CONMED 525 French Road Utica, NY 13502 (315) 797-8375/ BorgWarner Morse TEC 800 Warren Road Ithaca, NY 14850 (607) 257-6700/

16. 17.

ABOUT THE LIST Information was provided by representatives of listed organizations and their websites. Other groups may have been eligible but did not respond to our requests for information. Organizations had to complete the survey by the deadline to be included on the list. While The Business Journal strives to print accurate information, it is not possible to independently verify all data submitted. We reserve the right to edit entries or delete categories for space considerations.

What constitutes the CNY Region? Central New York includes Broome, Cayuga, Chemung, Chenango, Cortland, Herkimer, Jefferson, Lewis, Madison, Oneida, Onondaga, Oswego, Seneca, St. Lawrence, Tioga, and Tompkins counties.

Need a copy of a list? Electronic versions of all our lists, with additional fields of information and survey contacts, are available for purchase at our website,

Want to be on the list? If your company would like to be considered for next year’s list, or another list, please email

18. 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26.

Top Executive

Year Estab.

provides systems engineering, software Dan Spoor, VP & Owego General Manager 1957 development, and complex program Greg Larioni, VP & Syracuse General management for global security, civil, and Manager commercial markets software, systems integration, support for Dan Gobel, President 1949 defense applications, electronic-control and Amar Rai, Site Executive-Endicott power-mgmt. systems for military, commercial air, and land vehicles medical-device manufacturer Stephen F. Meyer, President & CEO 1915 Joseph Hennigan, COO Joseph J. Corasanti, President & CEO


Joseph Fadool, President & General Manager


Lawrence D. Kingsley, President & CEO


radar, communications, subsystems, satellite, modeling & simulations, antennas, air & ground surveillance, systems & analysis, electronic warfare, cybersecurity/critical infrastructure defense, bio assays, taggants manufacturer of complex RF/microwave networks & components for wireless, satellite, defense, consumer electronics, health care

Paul G. Tremont, President, SRC, Inc. Drew James, President, SRCTec


Lawrence A. Sala, President & CEO



vertically integrated provider of highperformance electronic packaging solutions

Robert L. Nead, President




drug development and manufacturing of biologic medicines

John Mosack, Executive Director & General Manager




provider of sensors, information processing, simulation, and modeling services

Mark Viggiano, CEO




Indium Corporation 34 Robinson Road Clinton, NY 13323 (315) 853-4900/ PPC Broadband Inc. 6176 E. Molloy Road East Syracuse, NY 13057 (315) 431-7200/ Giotto Enterprises (Fiber Instrument Sales, Inc.) 161 Clear Road Oriskany, NY 13424 (315) 736-2206/







PAR Technology Corp. 8383 Seneca Turnpike New Hartford, NY 13413 (315) 738-0600/ Matco Electric 3913 Gates Road Vestal, NY 13850 (607) 729-4921/ Dielectric Laboratories, Inc. 2777 Route 20 E. Cazenovia, NY 13035 (315) 655-8710/ INFICON Inc. 2 Technology Place East Syracuse, NY 13057 (315) 434-1100/ CXtec 5404 South Bay Road Syracuse, NY 13221 (315) 476-3000/ Kionix, Inc. 36 Thornwood Drive Ithaca, NY 14850 (607) 257-1080/ Trenton Technology 1001 Broad St. Utica, NY 13501 (315) 797-7534/ Schneider's Packaging Equipment Co., Inc. 5370 Guy Young Road Brewerton, NY 13029 (315) 676-3035/ Seneca Data Distributors, Inc. 7401 Round Pond Road North Syracuse, NY 13212 (315) 433-1160/ Transonic Systems Inc. 34 Dutch Mill Road Ithaca, NY 14850 (607) 257-5300/ Legrand Electrical Wiring Systems P.O. Box 4822 Syracuse, NY 13221 (315) 468-6211/







high-quality multilayer capacitors, single-layer capacitors, resonators, filters, thin-film components, bill-to-print

Michael P. Busse, President & General Manager




Peter Maier, President




instrumentation, critical-sensor technologies, and process-control software for vacuum processes; detection equipment for emergency response, military, security fields certified pre-owned networking and voice equipment, data center cabling products




MEMS inertial sensors, including accelerometers, gyroscopes

William G. Pomeroy, Founder & CEO Peter E. Belyea, President Ray Oliver, VP & COO Barbara Ashkin, VP & CFO Nader Sadrzadeh, President & CEO Timothy J. Davis, EVP & CTO Kenneth Hager, VP Manufacturing & COO



single-board computers, computer backplanes, computer motherboards, contract-manufacturing service

Michael Bowling, President, Trenton Systems




Rick Schneider, President




manufactures a complete line of robotic palletizing, case packers, tray packers, specialty cartoning systems, case sealers, and completely integrated packaging solutions manufacturer & distributor of computer systems

Kevin P. Conley, CEO Greg Masingill, President




Electronic flow measurement meters and sensors

Cornelis J. Drost, CEO




electrical wiring devices and accessories

Pat Davin, VP, General Manager


2. Business Journal estimate 3. i3 Electronics, Inc. is formerly Endicott Interconnect Technologies

Products and Services

devices and equipment for orthopaedic, general and minimally invasive surgery, gastrointestinal procedures, cardiology, and critical care broad expertise and customized solutions for variable cam timing, chain-driven engine timing systems, and drivetrain chains for front-wheel-drive transmission and transfer case applications develops and manufactures filtration products

Hardinge CNC lathes, Bridgeport Machining Richard L. Simons, Chairman, President & Centers, Bridgeport Kneemills, Kellenberger, CEO Jones & Shipmen, Hauser Tschudin, USACH Grinders, Hardinge workholding and rotary products materials manufacturer and supplier to the Gregory P. Evans, President & CEO global electronics, semiconductor, solar, thinLeslie Schenk, CFO film, and thermal management markets Ross Berntson, VP SM Wayne Hosey, VP Operations broadband & satellite connectivity solutions Dave Jackson, President




fiber-optic cable, cable assemblies, tools, Frank Giotto, President, CEO 1985 connectors; broadcast and military cables, Kirk Donley, SVP of Sales distributor for fiber-optic telecommunication Susan Grabinski, SVP of Accounting & CFO manufacturers; datacomm supplier; CNC machining, control safety relays, precision plastic injection molding provides hardware, software, and services Ronald J. Casciano, CEO & President 1968 including point-of-sale systems, propertymanagement systems, and government contract services electrical/data technology Ken Elliott, CEO 1965 Mark Freije, President


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8B • The Central New York Business Journal



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