RBJ Daily

Eastern reach
VP Supply Corp. is growing and expanding its geographic reach with the acquisition of J.E. Sawyer & Co. Inc. in Glens Falls, Warren County.

The purchase price was not disclosed.

J.E. Sawyer was founded in 1883 and has 23 employees. The company now operates as a division of VP Supply. Its offerings include plumbing, heating, kitchen, bath and industrial supplies.

The firm complements Henrietta-based VP Supply’s business, company leaders said.

It also increases the supplier’s delivery capacity in the area, VP Supply Vice President Gary Perkins said, noting the Glens Falls site is between VP Supply locations in Clifton Park, Saratoga County, and Plattsburgh, Clinton County.

VP Supply provides wholesale plumbing supplies; heating, ventilating and air-conditioning products; kitchen and bath products; industrial and contractor supplies; and renewable energy products and services.

The firm serves both contractors and residential customers through its 15 branch locations and showrooms in New York and Pennsylvania.

Perkins is part of the management team with Gary Curwin and his brother Louis Curwin (seen below).
—Andrea Deckert 1.19.16

Soleo plans to add 20 to 30 jobs locally
Soleo Communications Inc. plans to add 20 to 30 jobs locally, bringing its total staff to 100 by the end of the first quarter, company officials said last week.

The company had record sales growth and continued profitability last year for its lead generation and search services, which have grown by more than 200 percent since 2013, officials said. Soleo ranked 27th on the 2015 Rochester Top 100 list of fastest-growing private companies.

“We have rapidly accelerated the growth of our service platform and customer base to accommodate the growth in mobile search technology,” said Daniel Gallagher, chairman and CEO, in a statement. “We will continue to invest heavily in mobile search and in building platforms that make it easy for merchants to buy leads that result from these searches.”

The firm’s recent operational milestones include handling more than 4 billion searches and calls, and the launch of a consumer-oriented local search application programming interface.

The company’s expansion plans have included moving its headquarters to a 25,000-square-foot space in Victor. It also has operations in Florida.
—Kerry Feltner 1.14.16

Omni-ID raises $21M in funding
Omni-ID Inc. has raised $21 million in new funding to support global demand for its products, officials announced Tuesday.

Omni-ID’s radio-frequency identification tags and ProView tagging system have experienced strong growth, officials said. To support the growth, the firm will open offices in Germany and India in the next few weeks, CEO George Daddis Jr. said.

Locally based Trillium International LLC led the investment alongside GE Ventures, Stonehenge Growth Equity Partners and YFY Group.
—Kerry Feltner 1.19.16

New leadership announced for Garth Fagan Dance
Garth Fagan Dance announced a change in leadership Wednesday.

Karen Brown will be the new executive director, replacing Ruby Lockhart who retired after more than 10 years of service. Brown has been a member of the faculty at the Harlem School of the Arts since 2013 and previously served as assistant professor of dance at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia.

Stephanie Harris will be taking on the newly created position of director of development. Harris has experience in non-profit management and fundraising, serving in positions with the United Way in four states, the University of Cincinnati Foundation and the Cincinnati Ballet.

Lockhart announced her retirement in 2013. She was connected to the organization for nearly 30 years as a donor, board member and executive director.

Lockhart helped create a plan for the organization’s future, meeting with nationwide experts on non-profit dance groups to determine that selecting an interim director was the most effective path. Carolyn Bicks took over in the interim role, with Lockhart staying on as a consultant during the transition.
—Lori Gable 1.19.16

Ten years ago
Developer Laurence Glazer signed the first tenant for his latest project—the former Art Craft Optical Co. Inc. building—in the Cascade District.

Kafl Insurance Resources Inc. signed to occupy one of three floors of available office space at the building, now called Buckingham Commons.

Under extensive renovation, the building anchored the northeast part of the Cascade District, a revitalized neighborhood in the westernmost part of downtown, bordered by Plymouth Avenue and I-490.

Glazer’s team began demolition to build a new lobby. Renovation was slated to be complete by late spring.

Five years ago
Paetec Holding Corp.’s energy division at least doubled its revenue in 2010, raising it to between $20 million and $50 million.

Paetec Energy booked roughly $10 million in revenue as an independent energy supply company in 2009 before Paetec bought it. Paetec executive vice president Keith Wilson predicted that the division’s revenue would grow 50 percent more in 2011.

In less than a year, the division’s staff had increased from three to 40.

Wilson added oversight of the fledgling energy unit to his duties some two months ago after Paetec Energy’s former head, E.J. Butler, a Paetec founder and former chief operating officer, left the company.

Giuliani joining law firm
Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani is joining international law firm Greenberg Traurig as chair of its cybersecurity and crisis-management practice. Giuliani is leaving Houston law firm Bracewell & Giuliani.
—Albany Times-Union

Feds propose wildlife refuge
In an effort to stem a decline of species native to shrubby habitats, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service is weighing a new wildlife refuge spanning eastern Dutchess County and a smaller portion of northwestern Connecticut.
—Poughkeepsie Journal

Lewiston-Queenston Bridge to get $50 million upgrade
The American side of the Lewiston-Queenston Bridge is finally going to get an upgrade. Customs and Border Protection and the General Services Administration have given final approval to a $50 million modernization plan that will transform the U.S. plaza and create more than 1,200 local jobs.
—Buffalo News

Each weekday morning, RBJ editors comb the Internet to deliver a tip sheet on the latest news, analysis and opinion online. For a free subscription to the RBJ Morning Roundup or the afternoon RBJ Daily Report, go to staging.rbj.net/dailyreport.

1/22/2016 (c) 2016 Rochester Business Journal. To obtain permission to reprint this article, call 585-546-8303 or email rbj@rbj.net.


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