Category: Business

Dust Furniture

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Furniture is ‘functional art on a human scale.’

by Barbara Eastman

Dust & Ashes Productions Inc. is a Valparaiso-based custom furniture and home accessories company owned by Vincent and Jessie Leman. They founded the company in 2005, before they were married, and have spent the last 11 years growing the business.

Growing up on a farm in the tiny hamlet of Francesville, Ind. (population 1000), …

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Posted in Business, Current Issue, Fall 2016, Regional News | Leave a comment

Jeff Strack

“PUT THE NEEDS OF PEOPLE FIRST” Jeff Strack started as a stock boy and is now
president and CEO of Strack & Van Til, the grocery chain his grandfather cofounded.

Leader of Strack & Van Til started as a stock boy and bagger.

by Barbara Eastman

One of Jeff Strack’s fondest childhood memories is going to visit the grocery store founded in 1959 by his German-born grandfather, Ernie Strack, and his partner, Nick Van Til. Jeff’s dad worked in the business and started bringing Jeff to the store before Jeff was in grade school.

Jeff …

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Posted in Business, Current Issue, Fall 2016, Leader & CEO Profiles | Leave a comment

Executive Gift Guide

TASTY OLIVE OIL CO. Oils of many varieties, plus vinegars and specialty products to fill a gift basket.

by Lesly Bailey

‘Tis the season to start holiday shopping! This year’s executive gift guide spotlights small businesses throughout the region and the unique products and services only they could offer. With Small Business Saturday on Nov. 26, mark your calendars to shop local and help the entrepreneurial community continue to flourish.

For Her

For the fashion-ista

Seasons on the Square–Owner Donna Phelps stocks …

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Posted in Business, Current Issue, Executive Living, Fall 2016, Special Features | Leave a comment

Shaping the Next Decade

Innovators will ensure a prosperous third century for Indiana.

Governor Mike Pence and Lieutenant Governor Eric Holcomb sent a clear message on Indiana’s commitment to strengthening and accelerating Hoosier innovation earlier this summer. When they announced the state’s plan to invest $1 billion in Hoosier innovation and entrepreneurship over the next 10 years, they showcased Indiana’s dedication to building our strategic partnerships across the state. …

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Posted in Business, Current Issue, Fall 2016, Viewpoint | Leave a comment

Social Media Best Practices

It’s a great marketing tool, but it’s also a source of significant risk.

For most companies, social media is a cheap, effective marketing tool, which is easy to access, manipulate and maintain. But social media traits that benefit companies can also expose them to a myriad of legal risks.

* Ensuring Your Company Owns and Controls its Social Media Accounts–Some companies entrust their social …

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Posted in Advice, Business, Current Issue, Fall 2016, Legal Advice | Leave a comment

Green In More Ways Than One

A SOLAR REVOLUTION According to TJ Kanczuzewski of Inovateus Solar, solar energy is
gaining prominence as a power source in both residential and commercial development.

More and more people cashing in on the benefits of clean energy.

by Michael Puente

In 2007, TJ Kanczuzewski had an idea while working for his dad’s 2-year-old company, Inovateus Development.

The South Bend based company deals with small commercial and residential developments with a sustainability focus, including the use of solar energy.

“My father, Tom, saw there was a huge opportunity to transition …

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Economic Renaissance

ANOTHER 150 JOBS Monosol, a global leader in the manufacture of watersoluble
films, opened a new $95 million manufacturing facility in Portage.

Cooperative economic-development efforts are bearing fruit.

by Laurie Wink

Recent ribbon cuttings at manufacturing facilities across the region are signaling an economic renaissance in what was once considered the rustbelt.

Key economic development professionals, business leaders and elected officials at local, state and federal levels are joining forces–across affiliations and party lines–to promote the region as vibrant and full of opportunity for companies looking to …

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Posted in Business, Current Issue, Economic Development, Fall 2016 | Leave a comment

Companies to Watch

“‘SERVICE’ IS IN OUR NAME” Tom Schmidt
is founder and president of Elkhart-based Hoosier Crane Service Co.

Northern Indiana companies with great results and lots of promise.

by Steve Kaelble

What companies have potential to create tomorrow’s big business news? That’s what the Indiana Companies to Watch program sets out to discover.

This year, four Northern Indiana organizations made the state’s Companies to Watch list. These companies aim to bring people’s ailing cellphones back to life, keep overhead cranes operating safely and …

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Posted in Business, Current Issue, Fall 2016, News, Regional News, Special Features | Leave a comment

Honoring Innovation

Society of Innovators shines the spotlight on the region’s big thinkers.

by Jerry Davich

Similar to when atoms collide at high speeds, something remarkable happens when ideas collide at innovative speeds.

“The spark of genius happens,” says John Davies, managing director of the Society of Innovators of Northwest Indiana. “Everything begins with an idea. Everything. This is why innovation is so crucial and why …

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Posted in Business, Cover Story, Current Issue, Fall 2016, Regional Leadership, Regional News | Leave a comment

Inbound Marketing

The digital age ushers in cost-effective concepts.

The times have changed, the digital age has taken over, and society now has a whole new format for receiving information. The digital age has altered the landscape of how marketers advertise and communicate brands for a more enhanced customer response to the buying process.

Thanks to the Google age, businesses are now dealing with a more educated, …

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Posted in Business, Summer 2016 | Leave a comment