January 2016 Archive

Auto Supplier Chooses Greenfield

Excitement is high in Greenfield as Corvac Composites, LLC has begun to renovate and equip a 175,000-square-foot manufacturing facility shuttered three years ago. Cormac, a leading supplier of plastic components to the automotive industry, was looking for an existing building close to its customers. The Highland County facility ts their company philosophy as they manufacture with recycled plastics and believe in “recycling everything,” said Corvac President and CEO Jim Fitzell.

The Michigan-based company found buildings to meet their needs in Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana. But the final decision was about more than just a structure.

“We only want to be where we are wanted,” said Fitzell. “It was the people! It was that Greenfield wanted us, JobsOhio wanted us, CDBG wanted us, Appalachian Partnership wanted us, DP&L wanted us. Ohio wanted us!”

Corvac uses thermoform manufacturing to make high volume air flow management and water detection systems for the…

Read More

SOACDF funds available for job creation in Jackson County

JACKSON – The Jackson County Economic Development Board (JCEDB) announced that up to $200,000 in competitive grant funds are available through the Southern Ohio Agricultural and Community Development Foundation (SOACDF) for projects in SOACDF’s nine county service region. The mission of the grant is for SOACDF to sponsor strategic investments in communities that have been adversely affected by the reduction in the demand for tobacco.

Private sector business/industry with job creation/retention projects, political subdivisions and public nonprofits may apply. Colleges and universities may apply for projects that are private sector driven.

The criteria for grant availability are extensive, but the main points are:

• Funds may be used for capital improvements, fixed assets or land acquisition where the end purpose is for manufacturing, logistics/distribution, warehousing, agribusiness/food processing or healthcare.

• There must be a job creation/retention component. Job creation is defined as a year round fulltime job working a…

Read More

Drilling declines in Carroll County, but economic development continues

A single rig, drilling on a snow-crusted hill. That’s what $30 oil and $2 natural gas look like in Carroll County, the most-drilled part of eastern Ohio’s Utica Shale region.

A single rig, drilling on a snow-crusted hill.

That’s what $30 oil and $2 natural gas look like in Carroll County, the most-drilled part of eastern Ohio’s Utica Shale region.

Since shale exploration and fracking began in late 2010, no county has been drilled more than Carroll. Oil and natural gas flow from 392 wells, accounting for one-third of the producing Utica wells in the state.

A couple of years ago, you could have stood on a ridge in one of Carroll’s southern townships and counted the rigs like giant pins in a map.

An industry database says there are two rigs in the county. But last week, a Nomac rig on a Chesapeake well near Leesville appeared to be the only one actively drilling….

Read More

Area advances in contest

On Wednesday morning, it was announced that Portsmouth has advanced to the top 15 communities in the America’s Best Communities Competition.

The Southern Ohio Port Authority, Portsmouth Area Chamber of Commerce and Main Street Portsmouth teamed up for this competition.

When the competition was first announced there were roughly 400 communities throughout the United States involved. That pool of communities was narrowed to 50 and Wednesday that pool was narrowed to 15 communities.

“Great communities don’t happen, they are a result of people coming together moving towards identifying a shared vision and goal,” said Dave George, General Manager Southern Ohio Frontier Communications. “Frontier Communications, Dish Network, The Weather Channel and CoBank believe in great communities. We believe that great communities that can come together to put together a strong effort to make their community better.”

Jason Kester, Executive Director of the Southern Ohio Port Authority was pleased with the announcement.

“This is an extremely positive…

Read More

Price It Right

For many specialty food producers, pricing your products can be a challenge. To help specialty food makers set the ideal price for their products, the Specialty Food Association is hosting a 1.5-hour education session at the 2016 Winter Fancy Food Show.

The educational session, called Price It Right: Using Costs to Create Real-World Price Sheets, will be held on Sunday, Jan.17 from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. It will be led by Jonathan Milo Leal of Milo’s Whole World Gourmet, and will include the following topics:

1. How to start from your cost of goods to establish various pricing levels for wholesale, distributor, private label, and export.

2. Understanding how freight affects your final cost.

3. Setting the margin structure for your company, as well as the distributors and retailers with whom you’ll be working.

4. Avoiding common pricing pitfalls.

5. Identifying steps to take to be sure you’re protecting your profit…

Read More

Snowville Creamery founder says ‘God didn’t make milk wrong’

Warren Taylor Snowville Creamery

Image Credit: Dairy Foods

Warren Taylor picked me up at Port Columbus International Airport in Ohio and right away I knew this wasn’t going to be the typical visit with the owner of a dairy company. I had barely settled into his Subaru SUV when he asked: “How many teenage ADD boys does it take to change a light bulb?” Then he blurted the punchline: “Let’s go outside and ride bikes.”

Next he pulled out a glass jar of homemade kefir and poured half into a clean yogurt cup for me. He said he drinks a jar of this every morning after he practices tai chi. The ancient Chinese exercise clears his mind, he said, and the protein-packed, probiotic-rich kefir keeps him going until lunchtime. Then we hit the road.

Taylor is the owner of Snowville Creamery located…

Read More

21st Century Buffalo Hunting

Many economic developers describe the art of attracting large domestic and foreign companies as “buffalo hunting.”  Some praise the practice saying that bagging the big, migratory beast fills a lot of stewpots and benefits the whole tribe.  Others criticize economic development as being too focused on buffalo, rather than on local firms – the rabbits, squirrels and deer that fill most of our stewpots every day.

Since starting in 2012, APEG has focused mostly on local game.  We know that 80-90 percent of new jobs come from growing companies already present in our economy.  We have made thousands of calls on local companies, looking for ways to help them grow and succeed here in Appalachian Ohio.  Our retention and expansion efforts have resulted in most of the 5500 plus new jobs we have helped grow in the region.

Mike Jacoby describes (below) how APEG is launching new efforts to attract companies to…

Read More