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Here is today's summary of economic development news, a free service of the Economic Development Partnership of Alabama, representing Alabama's private sector investment in economic development.  If you enjoy NewsFlash, thank an EDPA Partner


In this issue:
New Huntsville biotech company Transomic offers next-generation research
Industrial training chief highlights state programs
Recycling business to add 60 jobs
U.S. Chamber of Commerce VP to deliver keynote at Get Connected luncheon




New Huntsville biotech company Transomic offers next-generation research RNA


Published: Thursday, August 23, 2012, 5:38 AM

By Lee Roop, The Huntsville Times 


HUNTSVILLE, Alabama -- Huntsville's HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology has launched a biotech company to serve the booming market in genetic research. Transomic Technologies is the 22nd company housed, started or incubated at HudsonAlpha since the institute opened in Huntsville in 2007. Like most of the others, it has its roots in breakthroughs in gene knowledge and the ongoing search for more breakthroughs.


Transomic sells next-generation genetic tools to researchers studying basic biology - how things work when they work correctly - and the biology of disease. Since there are an estimated 40,000 researchers now doing this work worldwide, Transomic chief commercial officer Dr. Gwen Fewell said last week, the company's business model looks good.


"We sell our customers products that help them understand what genes do by affecting the functionality of the gene, by either ... making the gene stop doing what it normally does, or making the gene do more of what it normally does," CEO Blake Simmons said.




[The Huntsville Times



Industrial training chief highlights state programs

By: Chris Anthony | Opelika-Auburn News  

Published: August 22, 2012



The skills gap created by rapidly changing technology in the workplace is one of the greatest challenges facing employers both in Alabama and across the nation, the head of Alabama's industrial training program said Wednesday.


Speaking at the Opelika Chamber of Commerce's Business Over Breakfast event, Alabama Industrial Development Training Director Ed Castile outlined ways the state is helping to keep Alabama workers up to speed on the latest industrial advancements.


"Technology is changing faster in the workplace than it is in your pocket on that phone you carry," Castile said.


AIDT provides workforce development training for the state's new and expanding businesses and helps employers screen potential workers for industrial jobs.


Castile highlighted facilities in Alabama providing technical training, including the Robotics Technology Park near Decatur. The approximately $73 million facility has two completed phases: the Robotic Maintenance Training Center and the Advanced Technology Research and Development Center.


"We have an extreme shortage of industrial maintenance techs across the state," Castile said. "This facility was built to get in front of that issue."




[Opelika-Auburn News


Recycling business to add 60 jobs

by Eddie Burkhalter, Anniston Star


A Fifth Avenue building vacant for nearly a decade will soon have new life -- and bring dozens of jobs to Piedmont.

City officials announced at Tuesday's council meeting that a recycling business will purchase the former Springs Industries building on Fifth Avenue.

Industrial Resin Recycling, a Michigan-based automotive plastics recycler, recently struck a deal with Springs Industries to purchase the building, said Don Hopper, director of the Calhoun County Economic Development Council.

The council approved Tuesday an abatement agreement with the company, forgoing sales and property taxes on the purchase of the Fifth Avenue building. The contract states that at the end of the third year of operation, the company must have worked up to a staff of 60 employees. The facility is to open Dec. 1, according the contract.

The company recycles automotive plastic waste, selling it back largely to automotive industries, Hopper said. The company's website states that it has been in business since 1995.

The decision to locate in Piedmont came down to the little things, Hopper said, like the school district's laptop program and the free wireless Internet access for students and faculty.

"It's the little things like that that stand out for Piedmont," Hopper said. "The education system here is something to be proud of."




[Piedmont Journal]


U.S. Chamber of Commerce VP to deliver keynote at Get Connected luncheon in Mobile

Published: Wednesday, August 22, 2012, 12:37 PM    

By Ellen Mitchell, Press-Register 


MOBILE, Alabama -- What regulatory changes are needed to encourage U.S. business investment and what does this mean for Alabama businesses? Those questions and more will be answered at the Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce's Get Connected luncheon.


The event, held in conjunction with the Chamber's Business Expo, will feature the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's Vice President of small business policy, Giovanni Coratolo, as the keynote speaker.


Coratolo said he will discuss the challenges facing small business and policies being discussed in Washington D.C. that will promote and sustain economic and job growth for small businesses.


"Small businesses are driving in a fog," he said. "They have the ability to go forward faster, but the inability to see clear beyond the next month or so instills reluctance in wanting to grow their businesses."





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