Ups and downs Featured

9:39am EDT July 22, 2002

(Ups) to Progressive Corp. The insurance giant's Web initiative is a perfect example of how to complement traditional brick and mortar operations with an e-based process. With a proven product and solid foundation to build upon, it didn't take long for Peter Lewis and Co. to make the masses forget about the company's failed E.T. advertising campaign.

(Downs) to Cleveland's biotech community. Gliatech's announced departure -- after the homegrown gel maker's sale to Baltimore-based Guilford Pharmaceuticals -- puts the brakes on what appeared to be successful efforts to keep Gliatech in town. Too bad there's no salve available to heal this wound.

(Ups) to SBN magazine. Seven Excellence in Journalism awards between our Cleveland and Columbus editions show SBN's peers acknowledge that we give our readers what they want -- and need -- every month.

(Downs) to Pony Computers' Planet Know How. The "how to" dot-com start-up burned through a large chunk of its seed capital without much to show for it besides a wake of unpaid contributors and a mediocre beta site. Ironically, one of PKH's first how tos explained how to start a successful e-business. It makes you wonder: Did the company's management team bother to read its own articles?

(Downs) to displaced tenants at Shaker Square. Sure, SBN understands -- and encourages -- real estate makeovers to spur economic growth, but Randy Ruttenberg and Adam Fishman's plans to return the square to its former glory aren't exactly making friends with merchants along the way. Should their initial attempts fail, the duo may find rough times filling space with locally based businesses.