September 9 2019

Economic Development Month in Review: August 2019

For the Top Economic Development News of the Month, CEG selects news articles about projects or developments that promise to improve and/or transform the Capital Region’s economy, particularly those that related to manufacturing and initiatives outlined in, Capital 20.20, a five-year, multi-pronged plan for bringing economic prosperity to the entire region.

To learn about more the Capital Region’s economic development news from the past month, see CEG’s Economic Development Week in Review posts:

Velan Studios grows to 70 employees in downtown Troy following major deal

“Velan Studios — the downtown Troy video gaming studio started by brothers Karthik and Guha Bala — has grown to 70 employees from 40 people at the start of the year.

The Balas say they plan to get to 80 employees by year-end.”

Schenectady biotech researcher wins $3M grant to fight E. coli

“A Schenectady biotech firm has received a $3 million grant to research a treatment for drug-resistant infections, and may get $6.2 million more if it demonstrates progress toward the goal.

Bravos BioSciences is receiving the money from CARB-X, a worldwide nonprofit partnership led by Boston University that is searching for a way to deal with the growing number of pathogens that can’t be killed with antibiotics.”

Schenectady-based helmet maker Kirsh sees progress in getting to market

“Schenectady-based Kirsh Helmets has set up computerized production equipment in Queensbury and set up shop at the massive Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, where it is the official event helmet.

Now it just needs to get its lids on retailers’ shelves and on bikers’ heads.”

Medical manufacturer moving ahead with $13.2 million expansion in Latham

“Philips Medical Systems MR Inc. is moving forward with its planned $13.2 million expansion in Latham.

Philips, which makes magnets for MRI machines, is proposing a 36,200-square-foot, one-story addition to its existing manufacturing plant at 450 Old Niskayuna Road. The expansion is expected to create more than 90 jobs.”

Ramp project at Albany port nearly complete

“A new roll-on, roll-off ramp that’s intended to ease movement of massive “heavy lift” cargoes at the Port of Albany is nearly complete, a year ahead of schedule.

Port Chief Executive Officer Rich Hendrick said Tuesday that the $16.5 million project is intended to ease the movement of cargoes such as large generators and turbines manufactured at the Schenectady General Electric Co. plant between barges and a warehouse.

Glens Falls leaders unveil vision for South Street redevelopment

“Mayor Dan Hall on Tuesday unveiled the conceptual design for the redevelopment of South Street, including The Market — a 10,000-square-foot, one-story glass-and-brick building with high ceilings and flexible space for farm vendors.

“I think it’s a gorgeous building,” he said during a presentation on Tuesday at Crandall Public Library.”

How this Schenectady tech company is managing 176% growth in 3 years

“The Jahnel Group is growing so quickly in downtown Schenectady, employees are spread out over three offices across several blocks.

The custom software company has added 20 employees so far this year, and CEO Darrin Jahnel expects to add about five more employees before the end of 2019.”

Saratoga startup raises more than $1M to connect video game influencers with big brands

“Angelo Damiano was a professional World of Warcraft gamer when he was still at Ballston Spa High School. Today, he’s aiming to help other gamers make money with his startup, PowerSpike.

PowerSpike connects more than 20,000 video game stars on Twitch — the largest 24/7 streaming platform for gamers — with brands for sponsored content marketing. The goal is to help gamers make a living through sponsorships and advertising deals on Twitch, as well as other livestreaming platforms.”

Essity plans $3.6 million upgrade to South Glens Falls plant

“Recycling has not only an environmental benefit but an economic benefit for Essity, which has undertaken a $3.6 million capital project to be able to use more paper waste in producing its tissues, napkins and other goods.

Essity site manager Steve Duell said that, in the past, the company obtained most of its paper from industrial printing shops. Now, Essity is getting more paper through residential curbside recycling.”

Site selector proposes 1.4 million-square-foot distribution hub in Saratoga County

“Insite Real Estate, a suburban Chicago site selector, wants to construct a distribution center in the Luther Forest Technology Campus in Malta that could be as large as 1.4 million square feet.

Insite is proposing to build up to two warehouses on 165 acres that the site selection firm is under contract to buy from MRFA LLC, a real estate holding company controlled by principals of D.A. Collins Cos. construction company in Wilton.”

These HVCC graduates will power factories of the future

“With a flurry of confetti, educators and local officials on Tuesday unveiled the $14.5 million Gene F. Haas Center for Advanced Manufacturing Skills, the latest addition to the campus of Hudson Valley Community College.

The new building, filled with state-of-the-art computer numerical control machines, a metrology laboratory and tools for material analysis, will allow HVCC to double enrollment in its advanced manufacturing technology associates degree program to 288 students from 144 currently, school officials said.”

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