February 14 2020

Week in Review: February 10 – February 14, 2020


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:



Business Review: Former tech CEO to head up Albany County economic development efforts

Times Union: Albany County hires part-time economic development director


Albany manufacturer just inked its biggest-ever contract. What’s behind the record booking

“One of the Albany region’s largest and oldest manufacturing companies’ first order of 2020 is the biggest in its 110-year history.

Simmons Machine Tool Corp. of Menands has secured a $14 million contract to make railcar maintenance equipment for a customer in the United States and Canada. The contract surpasses Simmons’ previous record of $12.7 million.”

Former tech CEO to head up Albany County economic development efforts

“Kevin O’Connor — the former CEO of FirstLight Fiber and the Center for Economic Growth — has been named director of the Albany County Department of Economic Development, Conservation and Planning.

O’Connor was confirmed Monday night by the Albany County Legislature.”

SUNY Schenectady to educate chocolatiers

“David Vazquez, a pastry student at SUNY Schenectady County Community College, hopes to one day own his own small bakery – maybe somewhere on Cape Cod.

But Vazquez, who said he specializes in scones and biscotti, decided to enroll in SUNY Schenectady’s baking program before taking on the financial and personal risk of turning a passion for baking into a business.”

Capital Region native brings his own film noir to the Spectrum

“When film producer Joe Pezzula attends the Albany premiere of “Cruel Hearts” at the Landmark Spectrum at 7 pm. Wednesday, he’ll be watching his own movie unspool in his old stamping grounds.

Growing up, his parents brought him to the Spectrum. His Uncle Bill brought him, too — “taking me to movies that maybe my parents wouldn’t.” As a student at UAlbany, he brought himself.”

Saratoga Eagle’s Sales And Service Growth Leads To Plans To Expand Its Warehouse

“After years of growth, Saratoga Eagle Sales and Service is expanding its Saratoga warehouse.

Saratoga Eagle Sales and Service is a beverage distributor, which delivers products to restaurants, pubs, convenience stores, grocery stores, concert venues and other retailers all over the area.

Currently, they provide service in counties from Albany, Schoharie and Rensselaer all the way up to Franklin County.”

As retailers race to keep up with Amazon, Plug Power grows

“Walmart was first. Then Amazon. Is Home Depot next?

When Andy Marsh announced last month that Plug Power signed a $50 million contract, securing a third anchor customer, it only took a few minutes for an analyst to start guessing the retailer’s identity.”

Publisher of Chilled Magazine opening Mohawk Harbor office

“The publisher of Chilled Magazine is taking office space at Mohawk Harbor, the $550 million waterfront development in Schenectady that includes Rivers Casino & Resort.

The magazine focuses on the bar industry and is published by Chilled Media, a media and marketing company owned by Anthony Graziano, the owner of The Shaker & Vine wine bar and restaurant. The Shaker & Vine is expanding as well, setting up outdoor igloos for patrons.”

Ayco’s new headquarters in Latham close to completion

“Work on Ayco’s new four-story headquarters off Route 9R in Latham is nearly complete, with parking lots paved and lined, and tractor trailers unloading interior furnishings.

Ayco will initially move 800 employees into the building beginning in April.”

Revolution Rail gets Warren County approval for more ‘rail bike’ routes

“Revolution Rail Co. will offer “rail bike” trips on three scenic sections of rails in the region this year thanks to a new agreement with Warren County leaders to expand operations.

The company will be able to offer pedal-powered rides on sections of railroad tracks in Warren, Hamilton and Essex counties starting this spring, after Warren County supervisors OK’d a contract to allow rail bikes on stretches of rails near North Creek and Stony Creek.”

Union Street hotel plans presented to committees

“A 50-room hotel could be coming to 7th and Union streets in the old McKinstry Mansion. Plans were presented to the Columbia County Industrial Development Agency and city Planning Board on Tuesday.

The building was originally constructed in the 1830s, with an 1870s addition, and is located in a historic district. Representatives of 620 Hudson House LLC will present their plans to the Hudson Historic Preservation Committee at its Feb. 28 meeting to obtain a certificate of appropriateness.”

Brexit brought this CEO to Saratoga County

“Donal Byrne, founder of Big Red Barn Ltd. in Ireland, will decide in the next two months whether to open his first American factory in Saratoga County.

The manufacturer of modular homes, warehouses and music festival barns scouted potential sites and met with prospective steel and lumber suppliers last month during a tour of New York’s fastest-growing county.”

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