MARCH 2013                                                               seCTer NEWS
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Local News Digest

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Southeastern CT Enterprise Region 

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March 2013
Southeastern CT News

Winter visited Southeastern CT with a vengeance in the last few weeks, but  the snow and ice are disappearing and the days are longer, although the cold lingers on and mornings are back to being dark. Sort of like the economy of the region, and CT, which while still feeling the effects of the recession, is slowly warming up, with bright spots amid the dark. 

One of those bright spots is the progress underway on the restoration at Mystic Seaport of the "Charles W. Morgan", the world's last remaining wooden whaling vessel (seen in our header picture). The "Morgan" will be relaunched in June, 2013 and in 2014 will embark on a weeks-long cruise visiting historic New England Whaling Ports.  The shipwrights doing this fine work are just one example of the skilled craftspeople who live and work in Southeastern CT.

Several new businesses have opened; the Coast Guard has announced Downtown New London as the chosen site for placing the National Coast Guard Museum; some part of Pfizer's Groton facility may get a new life under State auspices, and a Robin appeared outside our windows this morning!  All good news foretelling a thaw in the physical and economic climate of New London County!

Business Notes

Although the economy continues to have challenges, there have been some very bright spots in southeastern Connecticut's business community in the last few months.  Here are a few:

One of New London's interesting small technology companies, Quantum Discovery,purchased a competitor Indiana firm to increase their business and customer base.
seCTer and DECD's Small Business Express Program have provided almost $1,000,000 to local businesses for start-up and growth initiatives since last June. In just the past few months a combination of $624,000 in state and seCTer loans have been awarded to five regional companies.  Three of these are established firms:  Bozrah's Marty Gilman, Inc., maker of sports gear whose specialty is football equipment; Seconn Fabrication LLC, a fast growing manufacturer and custom metal fabricator; and Killer Minnow LLC, a digital media company whose newest products are mobile video games.  Two companies are new to the region and to CT:  AgroSci, Inc.  a manufacturer of patent pending subsurface irrigation systems, which is locating in Colchester, and Mystic Cheese Co.,
founded by Salem native Brian Civitello, a maker of artisanal cheeses locating in Franklin.  All of these companies will be hiring new workers, expanding their marketing, and enhancing their products and processes.   Read Release.

Our local companies, large and small, with their innovative and exciting products and services, continue to prove that Connecticut business is "Still Revolutionary."

Manufacturers Council Planning Underway

Our 2011 Regional Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) identified a the formation of a regional Manufacturers' Council as a high priority program for Southeastern CT.  Recognizing the importance of manufacturing to the area, from Sails and Marine Hardware, to Metal and Wire Custom Fabrication,  Wine and Cheese, and Nuclear Submarines, New London County has long been a hub of high-tech advanced manufacturing, with a tradition of skilled workers making things of value.  On March 6 a first step was taken to create a forum where our manufacturing companies can meet for strategic planning, identifying training needs for employees and recruits, and share best practices with each other.  A major partner in this effort will be the Quinebaug Manufacturing Institute in Northeast CT, and Quinebaug and Three Rivers Community Colleges.  Exciting times for our creative companies.   

Upcoming Event

MARCH 15: Construction Forecast for Eastern CT

Join the Chamber of Commerce of Eastern CT for an important program on the "Role the Construction Industry Plays in our Economy."  An address by featured speakers Peter M. Gioia, vice president and economist for the Connecticut Business & Industry Association (CBIA) and State Comptroller Kevin Lembo will be featured as well as a panel discussion with Jim Williams, President of the Builders & Remodelers Association of Eastern CT (BAEC) and John Bolduc, CEO of Eastern CT Association of Realtors (ECAR).

This event is presented in cooperation with the Builders & Remodelers Association of Eastern CT, Inc. and the Eastern CT Association of Realtors.

$17 members,  $25 nonmembers,$5 fee will be applied to all walk-ins.

To register visit the web site of the Eastern CT Chamber of Commerce.




Long time Executive Director of seCTer, John Markowicz, passed away on January 18 after a valiant battle with cancer.
John was the driving force in saving the US Naval Subase in Groton from closure in 2005. He will be missed.
Tricia Cunningham, Executive Director of the Greater Mystic Chamber of Commerce since 2006, announced her move to Development and Communications Manager at the Fairview-Odd Fellows home.  Ms. Cunningham will be replaced at the very busy 750 member organization by Tricia Walsh, currently the organization's Director of Membership and Communications. 

Another loss to the Economic Development Community will be Tom Wagner, Director of Planning for 30 years at the Town of Waterford.  Mr. Wagner is a seCTer board member and active participant in seCTer's Economic Development Committee.

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