SBN Staff

Wednesday, 30 January 2002 09:00

Business Notes

Jones, Dunn & Co.

Jones, Dunn & Co. of Hudson has changed its name change to Advantium. Founded in 1995, the company assists businesses in the recovery of money lost during everyday business processes. The rebranding focuses on Advantium's shift to develop innovations in post-audit software capabilities and business processes, and in its partnership programs, both key in today's downturned economy.

Industrial Construction

Industrial Construction of Brecksville won the Project of the Year Award from ICRI (International Concrete Repair Institute) at the ACI-ICRI fall convention in Dallas for its two-year renovation of the "Horseshoe," The Ohio State University Football Stadium. Ohio Stadium, built in 1922, is known nationally as an historic monument and a football mecca.

Akron Glass Tinting

The company, which installs window film on commercial and residential properties, has moved its headquarters from Cuyahoga Falls to Akron. The new facility, on Moe Drive, will allow it to continue to grow by providing more vehicle, warehouse and office space.

Falls Lumber and Millwork

The Mogadore-based company has acquired Markulis Signs and Wood Works Inc. The company, now a division of Fall Lumber, is headed by Markulis Signs' founder, Joe Markulis.

Ken-Tool

The Akron-based manufacturer of specialty tire and wheel service tools has acquired the assets of the Dowley Manufacturing Co. and Oldforge Tools. Dowley/Oldforge Tools is a manufacturer of specialty mechanic's tools. The acquisitions will boost Ken-Tool's manufacturing and marketing capabilities and add a well-respected product line and brand.

Allen Keith Construction Co.

The company, formerly of Uniontown, has moved to a 30,000-square-foot facility on Greenburg Road in Green. Allen Keith specializes in the restoration of residential, commercial and industrial buildings damaged by fire, water, storm or other disasters.

Ferry Industries

Ferry Industries, the world's largest supplier of machinery to the rotational molding industry, has completed the move of two new North American subsidiaries to its expanded headquarters in Stow and opened offices in England for a new subsidiary.

Monday, 31 December 2001 08:26

David Radin

David Radin's going after the pain.

Radin, who started Internet Insider Radio, a company that produced a weekly radio program geared to help Internet users, is moving on to helping business owners work through the discomfort they are experiencing with their computer systems.

Radin's company, M.Masters, is consulting with business owners to help make their computer-related technology, from e-mail to office applications, more productive.

"I consider myself to be a personal productivity coach," says Radin.

But he's still going to do radio broadcasts. Radin will continue to produce "Megabyte Minute," a program airing on radio stations in 20 markets. And, says Radin, he's working on producing a television program. Stay tuned.

Ray Marano

Monday, 31 December 2001 08:22

Tom Joseph

Tom Joseph got the idea for Bookminders when he was looking for a way to help his father and uncle do their own bookkeeping and accounting. He found that developing computer software to handle the numbers was one thing, but locating someone with the accounting skills was something else.

Now Joseph, who started the company in 1991, employs 45 work-at-home professionals who helped generate $1.5 million in revenue in 2001, a 23 percent increase over the previous year.

Joseph's concept is simple: Accountants with four-year accounting degrees and at least five years experience work from home-based offices for Bookminders' approximately 200 clients.Business owners looking to cut or eliminate staff pay the business an average of $1,000 a month for its services.

Joseph is planning to introduce a Quickbooks Web-based product that will allow accountants and their clients access via an application service provider.

Ray Marano

Monday, 31 December 2001 08:17

William Day

"William Day has been a creative and successful pioneer in developing the long-term care campus that everyone says is the future of the industry."

That's why Richard Peck, editor of Nursing Homes, says the magazine chose the president and CEO of St. Barnabas Health System as a member of its editorial advisory board.

Anyone familiar with St. Barnabas might view Peck's comment as an understatement. Day, who has been with St. Barnabas for 34 years, heads an organization that provides a full range of inpatient and outpatient health care services, with care ranging from family medicine to post-hospital nursing care to carriage homes for seniors. It includes two skilled nursing centers, two assisted living residences, two retirement communities, an outpatient medical center and a charitable foundation.

The health system's business acumen was acknowledged in 1995 with the Arthur Andersen Enterprise Award for Best Business Practices.

Since 1987, Day and St. Barnabas have hosted an annual leadership conference attended by many of the region's prominent business government leaders.

Ray Marano

Monday, 31 December 2001 08:14

Yvonne Campos

Yvonne Campos had a couple of things against her when she started Campos Market Research in 1986.

As a woman, she faced the obstacles most women entrepreneurs faced then, and, at times, still confront now. The other obstacle was a little different. Pittsburgh, the conventional wisdom had it, wasn't much of a place for market research.

Campos became the Rotary Club of Pittsburgh's first woman president in 1997. And she didn't allow preconceptions about the region blunt her enthusiasm for building a market research company. Her client base now includes multinational corporations, nonprofits, health care organizations, financial institutions and trade and professional organizations.

Recently, Campos has confronted the challenges and opportunities posed by the growing use of technology, particularly online technology, to her industry. She's gone with her strengths and continues to deliver the core research services Campos Market Research has traditionally offered while building large e-mail databases to tap for online focus groups and surveys.

Ray Marano

Monday, 31 December 2001 07:55

Merit raises hold

If you look to the big companies to set the pace for merit increases for your employees, your outlay will be about the same this year as it was in 2001.

Towers Perrin surveyed 40 major Pittsburgh employers and found that most respondents expect to pay out merit increases at about the same level in 2002 as they did in 2001.

The study indicates participating companies overall are taking an optimistic view of the economy, says a Towers Perrin consultant.

"Merit increase budgets tend to be a pretty good barometer of a company's business outlook because wage and salary costs make up the bulk of controllable operating expenses for most businesses in today's increasingly service-based economy, " says Steve Pakela, a compensation consultant with Towers Perrin in Pittsburgh.

Some companies are being cautious, however. The 10 companies in the survey that gave smaller-than-average merit increases in 2001 plan 2002 increases of only 3 percent, about 25 percent less than last year's level in most categories.

The 10 with higher-than-average increases in 2001 are also planning smaller increases in 2002. This suggests a heightened sense of concern about the economy in the wake of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, according to the report.

Ray Marano

Monday, 31 December 2001 07:50

Health care costs climb

A tight labor market in 2001 convinced lots of employers to defer passing on increased health care benefits costs last year.

Not this year, according to a survey by benefits consultant Towers Perrin.

Large employers' costs will jump about 14 percent this year, the study indicates, and many employers are passing along a share of those costs to their employees.

"Both locally and nationally, 2002 will bring the sharpest increase in health plan costs that companies have seen in many years," says Dan O'Malley, leader of Towers Perrin's health and welfare consulting practice in Pittsburgh.

Employees who received small increases in salary or wages for 2002 may see a reduction in take-home pay, says O'Malley.

Ray Marano

Monday, 31 December 2001 07:34

Accounting tips

Here are tips to keep you out of trouble.

  • Understand the basics of accounting and its terminology. Consider taking an accounting basics course.

  • Beware of mixing personal and business transactions. Keeping separate records for each is important for both IRS and credit history reasons.

  • Realize that no one can be an expert at everything. Hire an accountant to keep your finances straight and to stay in compliance with the IRS.
Source: Markovitz Dugan & Associates
Monday, 31 December 2001 06:37

Movers & Shakers

Cohen & Co.

Louanne Kiko has been promoted to senior manager of the firm's Canton office. Kiko has been with Cohen & Co. since 1998 and is a graduate of The University of Akron.

Waikem Auto Group

The Massillon-based dealership has hired Louis Marino as business manager of the George Waikem Ford/Nissan/Daewoo dealership. Waikem is a family owned company and employs 250 in the Stark County area.

Bruner-Cox

Anna M. Capaldi was promoted to supervisor in the tax department. She joined Bruner-Cox in 1999.

Steven M. Young was promoted to supervisor in the general services area. Young joined the firm in 1998.

Monday, 31 December 2001 05:42

Hitting the books

Ernst & Young is kicking its recruiting efforts up a notch by offering qualifying college recruits a free post-graduate education.

Seven Northeast Ohio students accepted positions with the local accounting firm prior to their 2000 graduation on the condition that they would be able to go back to school for a graduate degree before entering the business world full-time.

"Your Master Plan" is an ongoing recruitment program developed by Ernst & Young as a way to counteract the rising attrition rates the "Big 5'"accounting firms are facing. The program offers primarily nonaccounting business majors the chance to earn their Master's of Accountancy degrees at either the University of Notre Dame or the University of Virginia.

The 15-month program covers tuition, books, room and board, transportation and a stipend. Participants are considered full-time professionals of the firm while they earn their degrees and graduates must promise to stay with Ernst & Young for at least three years following the completion of their degrees.

Aaron Swartz, who works in Ernst & Young's Akron office, was hired by the firm after graduating from Mt. Union College in 2000 and spent last year earning his master's degree from the University of Notre Dame.

"They (Ernst & Young) initiated the process," Swartz says. "The firm was trying to attract students who had majors in finance, who wanted to get a master's in accounting and sit for the CPA exam. For me, I had always wanted to go to grad school and this was a good opportunity to get it started right away. It's pretty innovative in that you can combine going to school and getting the work experience at the same time."

Swartz, a staff accountant, committed to staying with Ernst & Young for three years. He hasn't decided what he will do after that.

"I can stay with the firm and be marketable within the firm, or take what I've learned and go into the private sector." How to reach: Ernst & Young, (330) 253-9264