September 25 2017

CEG Economic Development Week in Review – September 18 – September 22, 2017


Stay up-to-date on business and economic development happenings in the Capital Region with the CEG Economic Development Week in Review. Don’t miss out on the developments that are transforming the region by following us on:


How this Albany fiber-optics business aims to be a $100 million company in 5 years

“Integra Optics has an aggressive five-year plan to gain a larger share of what could be a $40 billion industry.

CEO David Prescott said in the next five years, he expects the Albany, New York, fiber optics company to exceed $100 million in revenue. At the same time, the transceiver industry is expected to grow to $40 billion from $4 billion.”

Improvements will help keep port in ship shape

“Site work is under way for a new climate-controlled warehouse, dock and a roll-on, roll-off ramp at the Port of Albany as it prepares to handle bulkier, heavier cargoes as well as a wide range of commodities.

The work is part of $49 million in improvements at the port, according to Rich Hendrick, the general manager.”

Passion for Pumpkins: Area farm finds success

“Good soil, ambition and a little luck.

That’s Bryan Herrington’s success formula for raising pumpkins, and it’s obviously working based on his abundant harvest this year.

He hand-plants and fertilizes all eight acres at his farm on Washington County Route 74, 10 miles south of Cambridge.”

Defense contractor Espey gearing up for $2.5 million investment

“Espey Mfg. & Electronics Corp. plans to invest $2.5 million over the next year on equipment and upgrades at its 150,000-square-foot factory in Saratoga Springs, New York.

The 89-year-old company designs and manufactures rugged power supply equipment for ships, missile defense systems, fighter jets and freight locomotives. Espey (NYSE: ESP) builds transformers and power converters that are capable of withstanding heavy wind, excessive heat and bumpy rides over tough terrain.”

Entrepreneur wins small-business competition

“A longtime entrepreneur and one-time Lyme disease patient has won a national award to expand her business selling all-natural insect repellent.

Gina Grillo of Grillo Essentials last week was named a top prize winner in the SCORE American Small Business Championship, an honor that carries a $25,000 award and a year’s worth of mentoring.”

NY investing $1 million in N. Greenbush LED firm

“New York state’s venture capital fund is investing $1 million in Vital Vio, an LED maker that has been one of the region’s most promising startups.

The investment, approved Tuesday, is being made by the New York State Innovation Venture Fund, a $100 million venture capital fund created several years ago by the Cuomo administration.”

Report: Albany a top city for single women to buy homes 

“A recent article from USA Today names the Albany area as one of the best markets for a single woman to buy a home.

The article references data from, an online real estate site. The rankings were determined based on average home value, median female income in each city, crime rate, walkability and more. While midwestern cities Cincinnati and Kansas City dominate the top of the list, Albany is also near the top at No. 4, beating out other markets such as Hartford, CT and Raleigh-Durham, NC, with an average home price of $189,100.”

National Grid gives King Brothers Dairy $120,000 for energy-efficient gear

“A local dairy operation is benefiting from some financial help from National Grid in its efforts to save electricity and grow its business.

King Brothers Dairy has received nearly $120,000 in energy efficiency incentives and economic development grants from National Grid. Elected and utility officials gathered at the dairy Wednesday to recognize its efforts and celebrate the economic impact it and other agribusinesses have across upstate New York.”

SUNY Poly prof gets $750,000 for power chips research

“Woongje Sung, an associate professor at SUNY Polytechnic Institute, has won a $750,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Energy to develop next-generation power electronics chips used in electric vehicles, the power grid and other renewable energy and power technologies.

Sung’s research focuses on silicon carbide chips that can be made smaller and more efficient than silicon-only chips. SUNY Poly is working with General Electric Co. on a $500 million power electronics manufacturing consortium focusing on silicon carbide chips as well.”

This New York manufacturer wants to make your food a little healthier

“Freddy Luna will decide in the next three months whether to move Vida-Blend LLC out of Amsterdam, New York, and double capacity by constructing a new manufacturing plant in a Montgomery County industrial park.

Luna, 51, is the founder and chief executive officer of Vida-Blend, which develops and manufactures nutrient and vitamin mixes that make pancakes, cereal and sports drinks a little healthier.”

Capital Region telemedicine firm grows along with field

“A local provider in the rapidly growing field of telemedicine will be pitching its services next week as human resource managers from across the state gather for their annual conference in Albany.

United Concierge Medicine is offering its virtual employee health care clinic with the promise of health and convenience for employees and lower insurance costs for employers.’ 

Schenectady-area robotics work on display

“A tiny part of the huge world of robotics was on display Tuesday at the Electric City Innovation Center, courtesy of those who are studying, using and developing robots in the Schenectady area.

“The Age Of Robotics” was the latest in ECIC’s Startup Town Square series, a periodic gathering of entrepreneurs, investors, mentors and educators aimed at sharing experiences and facilitating entrepreneurial opportunities in the Capital Region.”

Lafarge unveils new plant after $400M modernization project

“It’s been a project roughly $400 million and 10 years in the making, and on Thursday the new Lafarge plant in Ravena was unveiled during a special ceremony.

Modernization of the plant, then 50 years old, began in 2008, with the goal of reducing demand for fuel resources, cutting plant emissions, and making the facility more energy efficient and state-of-the-art.”

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