When Lisette Poletes joined up with her mother, Hortensia Albertini, to help lead Global LT in 2009, she did so with an air of curiosity.

“Probably for the first eight or nine months I was here, I took an approach where I really just watched what was going on,” Poletes says. “I had to build my own ideas of what I thought was working and not working coming from a different background.”

The numbers show it was time well spent. Global LT, a language training and translation provider, closed 2009 with just more than $9 million in revenue. When 2012 wrapped up, that figure had risen to more than $20 million.

“We’ve had one of the worst economies ever, and we’ve managed to not only survive but thrive,” says Poletes, the 101-employee company’s owner and CEO. “I’m very proud of what the team I work with has done. It’s to their credit.”

Earn employee trust

Poletes joined Global LT with extensive sales and marketing experience from her education at Michigan State University and her prior work experience with Pfizer. But she had not been a part of Global LT, so she had to earn employee trust.

“I wasn’t coming in to take it apart, to sell it, to bring a venture capital firm in,” Poletes says. “I was in it for the long haul.”

Words are one thing, but Poletes backed it up with action.

She invested in new accounting systems and customer relations databases and elevated employees who had worked hard into management positions. She also instituted a profit-sharing program for employees.

“We basically put a plan in place where I don’t take a dividend out of the company if they don’t all get paid,” Poletes says. “It’s fostering that environment where we all feel like we’re in this together.”

Make use of good ideas

Poletes does not need to be the lead voice on every new idea at Global LT.

“We’ve done a lot of different things based on someone saying, ‘This process doesn’t work,’ or, ‘This works in my department,’” Poletes says. “My response is, ‘Let’s make it a best practice and see if we can make it work across all departments.’”

A great example is the suggestion that was made to bring together the people who recruit teachers and translators around the world for the company’s language training department under one leader.

“It was something that had been tossed around in the past, but she came up with a great proposal and a great plan, and we said, ‘Let’s try it,’” Poletes says. “That’s probably been in place the last two or three months and seems to be working well. It may be that we move all our talent to do the entire recruiting under one giant umbrella instead of just for language.”

Keep pushing ahead

As Poletes looks to the future, she sees endless growth opportunities for Global LT’s language services in emerging markets such as China and Brazil. She also sees opportunity in the government sector.

“We just obtained our GSA certification, which allows us to go after government contracts,” Poletes says. “That will be a brand-new focus that has a ton of potential growth.”

And you can be sure that her employees will be part of the pursuit of those new opportunities.

“If it doesn’t work, you can always go back to the way it was,” Poletes says. “But you can’t move forward unless we try these new ideas and who better to come up with them than the people who do the work every day?”

How to reach: Global LT, (888) 645-5881 or www.global-lt.com

Published in Detroit

Goodwill of North Georgia isn’t your average nonprofit organization.

It is older than most corporations in the North Georgia area and among the fastest-growing Goodwill organizations in the country.

Between 2000 and 2012, the organization grew from 558 employees serving 491,000 donors at 25 locations to 2,425 employees serving more than 2 million donors at 124 locations. Goodwill helped find employment opportunities for 844 people in 2000 to more than 10,000 in 2012. And its revenue increased from $18 million to $113 million in that same time period, a 527 percent increase in a little more than a decade.

To better understand the organization that has been serving the community for so long, Smart Business partnered with Goodwill of North Georgia to learn about and evaluate its services and business model.

A strategic approach

Goodwill of North Georgia's mission is to put people to work, and this mission is interwoven into everything it does. The framework begins with a strategic planning process that outlines its goals for the following five years. It’s this planning process that predicts its growth, determines its efficiencies, defines its processes and provides the proper services to partner with employers to provide the job opportunities to those it serves.

Goodwill of North Georgia is the first donated-goods business in the world to hold the International Organization for Standardization 9001, 14001 and 18001 registrations. ISO 9001 is a standard that provides a set of requirements for quality management systems. ISO 14001 is an environmental management system that helps Goodwill of North Georgia reduce its impact on the environment. And ISO 18001 specifies requirements for implementing an occupational health and safety management system. These registrations confirm the high quality and dedication of the organization.

Business overview

All Goodwills throughout the world are members of Goodwill Industries International Inc., which comprises 165 Goodwill organizations in North America and 14 Goodwill affiliate organizations around the world. Individual Goodwills are given the freedom to design the services and programs to meet the unique needs of their local communities.

Goodwill of North Georgia has chosen to focus on driving revenue through its donation centers and stores so it can put more people to work through job training, job placement and job creation. Among all Goodwills, Goodwill of North Georgia ranks fifth in total revenue, fourth in donated goods retail revenue and fifth in the number of people it has helped find jobs, illustrating this focus has been successful.

In its donor services segment, the organization collects donated clothing and household items and sells them in its retail stores. Goodwill of North Georgia operates 41 stores and more than 60 donation centers. In fiscal year 2012, it processed 1.7 million donations and served more than 4.8 million customers while continuing to grow by adding 14 new locations and 156 new positions.

The facilities services segment of the organization cleans about 5 million square feet of space each day in the North Georgia area and generates more than $15 million in revenue a year. About 80 percent of employees in this segment have disabilities, and Goodwill gives these individuals an opportunity to obtain employment. This business provides top-notch facility management services to federal, state and local governments and the commercial real estate market and has been doing so for more than 30 years.

Goodwill of North Georgia’s career services segment serves not only individuals looking for work but also employers looking for talent. It helped put more than 10,000 people to work at an average wage of $9.86 per hour in fiscal 2012. Proving its dedication to its mission of putting people to work, the organization steadily increases the number of people it puts to work annually and is on track to put another 12,000 people to work by 2014.

Like any shrewd business, Goodwill operates its programs and services with an outcome in mind. The important outcome is how many people are now employed in the community; it does it by tailoring its services to meet the needs of employers within the community.

Business partnerships

Goodwill of North Georgia is committed to working with businesses of all types and sizes on a variety of projects. The organization is the go-to employee source for many businesses, and because of its stellar reputation and success in the community, it receives word of many job openings before they are posted publicly.

Goodwill of North Georgia has become known for the shared value it provides for both the community and businesses. These businesses receive workers who are fully trained and ready to work, and the workers receive a job that enables them to provide for their families and the greater community.

Besides hiring Goodwill of North Georgia’s program participants, companies throughout the area provide on-the-job training or utilize the organization’s training and employment resources. And Goodwill of North Georgia is open to other business partnerships that promote its goal of developing and strengthening its community.

Building cash reserves

Goodwill of North Georgia runs its business with a focus on building cash reserves of at least 30 percent of its annual revenue.

This strategy enables the organization to adroitly plan for anything that would be disruptive to the business. It has also made Goodwill of North Georgia one of the few nonprofits that was able to grow and expand during the recession.

Its business model also allows Goodwill of North Georgia to continue growing — as people outgrow the use of their items, they donate them. And at the same time, they need items, so they visit the organization’s stores to purchase them.

One of the misconceptions of nonprofits is they are not focused on operating cost-effectively and efficiently. This could not be further from the truth with Goodwill of North Georgia. The organization is focused on generating revenue and using it in a way that makes it a good steward of generous donations. It constantly looks for ways to reduce costs and live up to the highest standards of quality.

Maximizing efficiency through decentralization

Goodwill of North Georgia is one of the few Goodwill organizations in the country that is decentralized. The organization analyzed its internal processes to find ways to be even more efficient. Now it takes in donations at all of its individual locations and processes all donations to sell within 24 hours.

The organization greatly attributes its growth to this keen business strategy. It allows it to be more efficient because it is processing donations and getting them out for sale more quickly. It also saves on the costs of transporting the goods from various stores to a separate location and back again and on staffing for a separate location.

This process is more efficient and environmentally friendly. Shoppers at Goodwill of North Georgia’s stores are essentially buying their neighbors’ clothes, and the money and goods stay in the community.

Goodwill of North Georgia applies the decentralization philosophy to its career centers, as well. Instead of one central career center, Goodwill of North Georgia has many centers spread across its territory, making it more convenient for those who use the services and therefore enabling it to put more people to work.

Business processes drive results

Goodwills around the world are known for their donation centers and retail stores. However, not everyone knows the power of those donations and what goes on behind the scenes.

Goodwill’s stores are stocked with the items people donate. The proceeds from these sales support the operation of the organization’s career centers and other programs, which fulfills its mission of putting people to work.

Donations add up. For every nine shirts or blouses donated, Goodwill is able to provide one hour of resume preparation. For every chair donated, Goodwill is able to provide 12 minutes of career counseling. Donations have a huge impact on the organization and the communities Goodwill serves.

Because of this, Goodwill of North Georgia continually evaluates its stores to ensure they are operating as efficiently and effectively as possible. As times change, it quickly adapts and responds to ensure it is still meeting the needs of its community. The organization takes good business practices that work well in its best-performing stores and implements them in its other stores. This standardizes the stores so they all have the same processes and makes it easier for both employees, who can easily relocate from one store to another, and shoppers, who can visit different locations and expect the same great quality and service.

Goodwill of North Georgia makes donating easy and convenient in other ways, as well. It has an area of its website (www.goodwillng.org) where individuals, businesses or organizations can choose to donate money. If the donor desires, these contributions can go to a specific program. If the donor does not specify a use for the money, the board of directors selects a program.

And donations don’t have to be tangible — Goodwill of North Georgia also has volunteers who help the organization as placement call specialists, computer support assistants, class instructors, job fair support staff and more.

What happens to donated goods?

Goodwill of North Georgia accepts a wide variety of goods, including:

  • Bicycles
  • Books
  • CDs
  • Clothing
  • Computers
  • Dishes
  • DVDs
  • Pots and pans
  • Stereos
  • TVs
  • Video games and systems

Goodwill of North Georgia is grateful for all of its donations and does not waste them. Items that aren’t up to the organization’s quality standards or cannot be sold within three weeks are offered for sale to the secondary/salvage market.

Great business practices equal great opportunities

Goodwill of North Georgia provides job training opportunities for a wide demographic across 45 counties, including youth, veterans, people with disabilities and people with limited education, although its career centers are open to anyone.

Goodwill of North Georgia has eight career centers that are free and open to the public. The centers offer weekly listings of local job opportunities often not found online or in the newspaper, computers with Internet access and resume writing software, phones and fax machines to arrange appointments and communicate with employers, a resource library with materials to help job seekers prepare for and secure employment and other resources such as coaching and interview tips. These services are critical to the community as many job seekers need the extra help in securing a job.

Goodwill of North Georgia also offers training programs at these centers, including programs for single mothers, noncustodial parents and other niche groups, and also offers certification programs, such as programs for forklift operators and apartment maintenance technicians. Workers who have attended these training programs have impressed many employers with their knowledge, perseverance and professionalism.

Talented, passionate staff and volunteers who provide guidance, coaching and strategies on job hunting operate these centers.

These services are particularly important because of the current economic climate. Many workers, especially skilled and semiskilled workers who have been affected by the loss of jobs or reduced hours, need the career assistance Goodwill of North Georgia provides.

In response, Goodwill of North Georgia ramped up its training offerings, working through weekends and holidays to solidify its mission of putting people to work.

Focus on the future

Goodwill of North Georgia ensures its employees are cognizant of its mission — putting people to work. The mission is posted and visible in its stores and career centers and is communicated during meetings and visits by executives. This communication ensures employees feel connected to the organization and are reminded of the importance of their work.

The organization also engages its employees in its strategic planning process. Goodwill of North Georgia has a volunteer board of directors, executive staff and more than 100 other managers engaged in some level of strategic planning.

Also, when a new store opens, Goodwill of North Georgia President Ray Bishop personally meets with its employees to discuss the organization’s planning process and why the stores exist. Employees are encouraged to read and understand the 5-year Strategic Plan and then ask questions.

This method of engagement is a main reason the organization has been so successful. A thoroughly followed, reviewed and communicated plan is critical to an organization’s success, and Goodwill of North Georgia’s method of creating and utilizing its plan is on par with some of the top businesses in the world.

Conclusion

Goodwill of North Georgia is effectively and efficiently run and well positioned for the years ahead. The community-based organization owes its success to a dedicated strategic planning process and commitment to excellence and execution at all levels of the organization.

Its current plan calls for it to double its size and revenue from 2010 to 2014, and it is on target to do so. The organization plans to open five new stores a year and each new store will employ about 40 people. It also plans to add one career center per year. Each career center increases the number of people the organization serves by an average of 3,000 and the individuals it puts to work by an average of 650.

The bottom line: Goodwill of North Georgia’s services and programs put people to work. It is an experienced and capable organization that operates with an effective business model, uses its resources well and focuses on bettering the North Georgia community.

HOW TO REACH: Goodwill of North Georgia, 235 Peachtree St. NE, Atlanta, GA 30303. Phone: (404) 420-9900. Website: http://goodwillng.org/.

Published in Atlanta

Charles ElliottSemifinalist, Distribution

Charles Elliot founded his own company in 1991 — basically by selling a wheelchair out of the trunk of his station wagon. From there, he operated as its sole employee in a Detroit-warehouse, doing everything from unloading trucks to product sales and customer service.

The president and CEO of Lake Court Medical Supplies Inc. has since grown the Roseville, Mich.based company to four warehouse facilities located in Michigan, Illinois, Indiana and Florida. Lake Court Medical Supplies has 19 trucks running and a staff of 60 spread across these locations.

Elliot’s success stems from hard work, determination and a vision to differentiate from competitors through top-notch, cost-effective service. The distributor supplies a large selection of competitively priced products, making purchasing easy for consumers. The company can consolidate purchase orders across this wide selection of products and vendors and deliver same or next day. Service doesn’t end with the delivery — the company offers marketing assistance and product training, as well. By offering quality, expedient delivery of products, Lake Court Medical Supplies saves its clients money by eliminating the need to overstock their warehouses. The company acts like the warehouse, delivering what clients need when they need it.

The company continues to expand its sales focus, incorporating a multitude of retail sales items to supplement the prescription-based products already stocked. Constant re-evaluation of products, vendors, territories and the marketplace keeps Lake Court Medical Supplies in the know on industry changes and resulting client needs.

The company also supports clients by giving to various associated charities, such as the Beaumont Foundation, The Ford Cancer Center and Kosair Children’s Hospital Foundation.

HOW TO REACH: Lake Court Medical Supplies Inc., www.lakecourt.com

Published in Detroit
Saturday, 30 June 2012 20:01

Ryan J. Blair, CEO, ViSalus Sciences

Ryan J. BlairWinner, Consumer Products

Ryan Blair’s life is an open book, literally. His story of graduating from the life of a gang member to that of a millionaire is portrayed in The New York Times best-seller titled, “Nothing to Lose, Everything to Gain: How I went from Gang Member to Millionaire Entrepreneur.”

Blair is the co-founder and CEO of ViSalus Sciences, a marketer and distributor of health and wellness products. He founded his ?rst company at the age of 21 and started and sold two others before he helped found ViSalus. The company employs thousands of people and has more than 60,000 distributors worldwide.

ViSalus grew quickly, and in 2008, it was sold to Blyth Inc. A few months later, the economic recession hit and ViSalus was left one month away from having to declare bankruptcy. Blair and his co-founders invested all of their savings to give ViSalus one more month of operating capital to test an idea they believed would save the company — the Body by Vi 90-Day Challenge. In July 2009, the Body by Vi 90-Day Challenge was launched with little response. The move was a total corporate transformation and a huge risk, which looked as though it would result in failure. However, Blair’s industry disruptive business model of acquiring customers by leveraging mobile and social technology started to gain traction. That year, the company’s revenue tripled, and in 2011, ViSalus saw sales increase sevenfold, and they haven’t slowed since.

The new business platform leveraged the primary strengths of network sales: momentum and social marketing. ViSalus continues to gain customers through a customer-?rst approach and a focus on customer acquisition and retention. In February 2012, the company added 113,000 new members and currently boasts an 8-to-1 customer-to-promoter ratio.

HOW TO REACH: ViSalus Sciences, www.visalus.com

Published in Detroit

PowerNet Global’s “Love Your Neighbor” Tablet Program was created to bring communities together and give every child an equal opportunity for a greater education. The “Love Your Neighbor” program asks businesses and churches within a local community to purchase PowerNet Global tablets and/or telecom services to help fund PowerNet Global’s school tablet program.

The program provides children that attend a participating school with a tablet for their education. The Android tablets allow kids to keep up with today’s emerging technology while having access to books, assignments, the Web and much more right at their fingertips. New tablets will be provided to the schools every two years to ensure children have the latest and greatest models. All of the old tablets are donated to children attending schools in  Namibia, Nigeria and other developing countries.

In order for the kids to get the most benefit from their tablets and sustain the program, their families are asked to purchase Wi-Fi for their homes. PowerNet Global offers multiple payment plans to fit every family’s needs to make sure the “Love Your Neighbor” program truly fills the gaps for families in need of a little extra help.

To start the program with a bang, PowerNet Global is offering all local schools the opportunity to participate in the program and take advantage of getting Wi-Fi service in their school, and providing every student with an Android tablet.

When you buy from PowerNet Global, you’re not just buying a tablet or service; you’re investing in a cause. With PowerNet Global, businesses will be  paying the same or less for the telecom services they already have today, but they’re giving back to their local community at the same time. The “Love Your Neighbor” Tablet Program gives children a powerful advantage, ensuring every child has the same opportunities, regardless of their family’s income.

About the Company

PowerNet Global provides high quality communications services to businesses and residents nationwide. Celebrating 20 years as a leader in the telecommunications industry and achievement as a multi-award winning company, PowerNet Global is a premier provider of voice, data, SIP and managed services.

Headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio, PowerNet Global was built on a foundation of strong business ethics and integrity. Offering an expanding array of progressive products, its services are supported by a consistently expanding footprint, strong network, expert sales professionals and support teams that are dedicated to providing customers with the service they really need. Clients can focus on their business and leave the details to the experts.

When you do business with PowerNet Global, you can be sure that you’re working with a true partner that cares about your success.

You can reach PowerNet Global at 866.764.7329 or www.powernetglobal.com.

Published in Cincinnati
Wednesday, 30 November 2011 20:01

Why Georgia Jet?

Recently, Smart Business sat down with Lea Williams, president and CEO of Georgia Jet, to discuss the benefits of flying with a charter company.

Why fly charter?

There are many reasons to fly charter. The most significant is productivity; the best use of your time. Whether for business or leisure, Georgia Jet can make the travelling you do more efficient and effective. There are three basic elements to this productivity advantage: time, control and peace of mind.

First, Georgia Jet puts time back into your pocket with every trip. Georgia Jet is a virtual “time machine.” We can originate your trip from any of more than 5,000 airports throughout the country (commercial flights only service about 500 airports nationwide). This allows you to depart from a nearby location and arrive as close as possible to your ultimate destination — minimizing commuting time and eliminating the need to slog through tedious security checkpoints and sit around in a crowded departure waiting area. These time-savings alone are reason enough to choose the charter advantage.

Second, Georgia Jet puts real meaning into the word “control.” We travel on your time schedule — not someone else’s. Imagine the convenience of making out-of-town business trips with your entire team in a single day — out in the morning and back that evening. Our aircraft becomes your flying conference room — coordinate, strategize and plan while en route to your meeting. Running late? No problem. We’re not going anywhere without you! Absolute control of your schedule can mean the difference between closing a deal or not closing a deal — ahead of your competitors; and doing it in time to still make that dinner date with a different client of equal or greater importance in another city or back home.

And getting to and coming from the aircraft is a breeze. In most instances you can drive right up to the aircraft, load up and be on your way within minutes of arrival at the airport.

Need to recap that important meeting with your team while it’s still fresh in everyone’s mind? Not a problem if you’re all together in your own flying conference room at the end of the day. Ultimate control over your schedule and agenda is reason enough to choose the charter advantage.

And finally, Georgia Jet can provide you with unparalleled peace of mind. In these days of heightened security, you will always know who is on the aircraft with you. You can rest assured that your conversations and computer screen are not privy to anyone beyond you and your selected traveling companions. No more worries about flying with an “underwear bomber” or screaming babies. Forget about some stranger sitting behind you coughing on the back of your head for two hours. Arrive rested and ready for that important meeting or critical negotiation. Peace of mind is reason enough to choose the charter advantage.

What makes flying Georgia Jet different?

Georgia Jet has only one objective — making your travel the best it can be. We can handle every aspect of your travel, beginning with our fleet of first-class aircraft and 24/7 dispatch services, following through with true concierge-style service and flight following personnel. We own and operate all of our own fleet and offer one of the most diverse choices of charter options in the Southeast. And we are specialists in customer service. Our aim is to exceed your expectations — every time and in every way.

Who flies Georgia Jet?

Our customer base ranges from celebrities in the sports and entertainment industries to business travelers to vacationers — anyone who wants to manage their time better. With the ability to work within their schedule, we can get them closer to where they need to be — when they want to be there — and get them moving to their next destination or back home at their convenience. We are a time multiplier.

And yes, we see quite a bit of leisure travel at Georgia Jet! It seems that, once a business executive or celebrity realizes the value of the charter advantage, taking the whole family along just seems like the right thing to do!

What are some other unique services that Georgia Jet provides?

We provide complete concierge services for all aspects of your travel, including ground transportation coordination and catering. We have a 24/7 dispatch center, so you always talk to a real human being when you call. We have a block time discount program for frequent flyers. Georgia Jet offers aircraft sales and aircraft management services, as well, drawing on our many years of experience in the aviation business. We are here to serve all aspects of your private aircraft experience.

Georgia Jet, founded in 1986, is based at Gwinnett County Airport in Lawrenceville (LZU). We can arrange your flights to anywhere in the world. Call today and let us show you why Georgia Jet should be your private jet charter company of choice.

Milton Lea Williams, II (Lea) is the president and general manager and co-owner of Critical Care Medflight and Georgia Jet Inc. Lea and his son Milton Lea Williams III became owners of Critical Care Medflight and Georgia Jet in February of 2011. You can reach Lea at (800) 248-8908 or lea@gajet.com.

Published in Atlanta

On the Monday after Thanksgiving every year, Paul Hanna sets up a live “Giving Tree” in the front lobby of Blue Technologies Inc. and decorates it with just lights. Hanna, the document management company’s president, then asks employees to bring in gifts to be given to the children of the Berea Children’s Home and Family Services.

For each gift they bring in, they are given an ornament to hang on the tree and before long, the tree is full of decorations.

It’s a program that brings smiles to a lot of children, but it also boosts the morale of Hanna’s employees. And that, in a nutshell, sums up the mission of Hanna and his team of partners, which includes Keith Stump, vice president of sales, Bill Nelson, vice president of territory sales, and David Morrill, sales manager.

Giving back to the local community in a way that helps children has always been part of Blue Technologies long-term vision. The company annually donates more than $100,000 to organizations such as the Cavaliers Youth Fund, the Bellflower Center for Prevention of Child Abuse, The Gathering Place, the Cleveland Browns Foundation, Applewood Centers, the Alzheimer’s Association and the Berea Children’s Home and Family Services.

Through its partnership with the Berea Children’s Home, the firm has become the lead sponsor in its annual golf outing, donating more than $20,000. In this difficult economy, the golf outing grosses about $125,000 to $140,000 to award scholarships to children in need. Last year, scholarships totaling $115,000 were given to 23 students.

Employees also stepped up in May when a tornado ripped through Joplin, Mo., collecting food and clothing for the victims. The items were packaged and later shipped to the American Red Cross to help more than 100 people in Joplin.

HOW TO REACH: Blue Technologies Inc., (216) 271-4800 or www.btohio.com

Published in Akron/Canton

As a provider of industrial-grade and medical-grade wireless modules for customers, Summit Data Communications Inc. has experienced major growth over the last five years as it’s built out its niche in the global Wi-Fi marketplace. To date, the company has provided 1 million wireless modules that are in use today at companies of all sizes around the world.

Founded in 2006 by President Ron Seide and four former Cisco employees, Summit set itself apart from competitors by manufacturing its wireless modules to provide reliable connectivity in harsh environments. Today, its radios are used in all kinds of environments, from outdoors to hospitals, warehouses, retail stores and factories.

The ability to resonate with a variety of client needs in a diverse range of markets has allowed the company to create a strong and established international presence. Today, more than two-thirds of Summit’s revenues are generated from companies overseas. As a result, over the past five years, the company has grown dramatically, with job growth of nearly 300 percent.

As Summit expands its business worldwide, it remains committed to offering high-quality products and service as well as to serving the local Akron community where it has thrived. Over the past few years, the company has brought on a total of 18 students from The University of Akron for internship opportunities and it also offers a student scholarship each year.

Summit’s track record of success is apparent in the recognition and awards it has received from peers and business organizations. In 2010, Summit was named the fastest-growing computer hardware manufacturer in the Midwest by the annual Inc. 500/5000 list of the fastest-growing businesses in the United States. With its three-year annual growth rate of 516 percent, the company was also ranked 588th on the list overall. Just four years after its launch, Summit announced that it had reached the milestone of one million Wi-Fi radios shipped.

How to reach: Summit Date Communications Inc., (330) 434-7929 or www.summitdata.com

Published in Akron/Canton

Kocon Masonry & Design specializes in the design and installation of professional, creative masonry solutions for residential and commercial properties in the Cleveland metropolitan area.

For more than 12 years, the artisans at Kocon Masonry & Design have been providing the following customized solutions:

  • Brick and stone veneers for custom homes
  • Outdoor kitchens
  • Outdoor fireplaces
  • Patios
  • Porches
  • Retaining walls and foundations
  • Stone, brick and paver pathways
  • Custom mailboxes
  • Archways
  • Chimneys

Kocon Masonry & Design also can provide professional masonry repair services.

"The work done by Kocon Design exceeded my expectations. It has increased the use and enjoyment of our yard, along with the value of our home," says satisfied customer Kelly Lupica.

Adding a professionally designed and installed outdoor fireplace, kitchen or patio not only adds to the aesthetics of your property, but more importantly, it adds to the value of your property! And, brick and stone is virtually maintenance free.

Also, masonry products are considered “green” and are recognized by government programs as a contributor to green building status, potentially qualifying the homeowner/property owner for certain incentive programs.

Please contact Kocon Masonry & Design today for a complimentary visit to review your masonry project and/or repair work at (216) 978-9641.

Published in Cleveland
Wednesday, 02 March 2011 16:30

Corporate Profile - TD Bank

As a top-15 U.S. commercial bank with significant corporate and retail presence in Greater Philadelphia, we at TD Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank, know first-hand the benefits of doing business in this attractive region. We stand ready to assist companies of all sizes to thrive in this market as well, whether they need capital to start up or grow, solutions to meet their most complex financial needs, or a trusted advisor to help guide their companies to prosperity. TD Bank is a committed banking partner for the business sector, public and private organizations, higher education institutions, healthcare facilities – and all the industries that drive growth, employ millions and create opportunities for all of us in Greater Philadelphia.

Open for business

In the Greater Philadelphia region, and in all our markets from Maine to Florida, TD Bank is most definitely “open for business.” We remain a strong, well capitalized bank, we continue to lend, and we have the absolute best local team in banking. At a time when it seems that many commercial banks are scaling back from the market, TD Bank is bucking the trend. We’re growing, lending, hiring, adding new locations all along the East Coast, and standing by our customers through one of the toughest economic periods in history. One of the key reasons why TD Bank is “open for business” is our unique business model. We combine the sophisticated product and delivery capabilities of a national bank with our talented team of local managers, who are focused on building strong relationships. Here in Greater Philadelphia, TD Bank’s Metro Market team offers unparalleled service right in our own community. We see ourselves as an important source of credit to the businesses, which are the backbone of our economy – we’re local lenders making local loans. Our dedicated team customizes financing options that best meet a customer’s objectives, and allows the customer to focus on the number-one priority: their business. Another reason TD Bank is here for Greater Philadelphia business is because of our financial strength. As one of the few banks that sidestepped the recent financial meltdown, we’re seeing a real flight to quality. Our customers are telling us that safety and soundness matter, and our conservative credit culture, strong credit ratings, and abundant capital make TD Bank a bank they can trust. In addition, TD Bank offers all the resources a growing business needs. Of course, we provide a wide range of small business, commercial and corporate deposit products, traditional lending products like loans and lines of credit, and insurance and investments. Now, with the power of our parent company, TD Bank Financial Group, behind us, we can provide more comprehensive, full-scale solutions for business than ever before. We’re growing our specialty lending capabilities and teams in Asset Based Lending, Leasing and Equipment Finance, Cash Management and Merchant Services, as well as international services including Global Trade Finance and Foreign Exchange. But no matter how large or small the company, or how complex or simple their needs, we’re committed to providing the same legendary, quality service to all of our customers.

Community matters

TD Bank has been an active corporate member of the Greater Philadelphia community since 1973, when our predecessor, Commerce Bank, was founded. And though our name may have changed, our involvement in the community and our passion for supporting local business development are as strong as ever. TD Bank has one of its dual headquarters in Cherry Hill, New Jersey, and we operate more than 170 retail stores throughout Greater Philadelphia. We enjoy the privilege of employing thousands of talented professionals who live and work across the region, and every day we are surprised and delighted by the passion and drive of our fantastic Greater Philadelphia employees, who work hard to make us America’s Most Convenient Bank. Our employees also dedicate their talent to making Greater Philadelphia an even better place to live and work, volunteering countless hours of their time to non-profits, community events and other worthy causes. TD Bank also contributes financial support to our communities via the TD Charitable Foundation, through which we have donated millions to Greater Philadelphia charitable organizations since 2009. We also believe that environmental stewardship is key to being a good corporate citizen, which is why we recently took steps to become carbon neutral.

Ready for Action

Whether a Greater Philadelphia business is looking to start up or expand its existing operations, TD Bank stands ready to serve. We’ll match your business with a local, dedicated relationship manager who’ll tailor a suite of financial solutions to your unique needs. We’re passionate about helping businesses thrive in our region. For more information on what TD Bank can do for your business, please call us, visit any TD Bank store, or find us online at www.tdbank.com.

Published in Philadelphia