Corrections or additions?
This article was prepared for the April 10, 2002 edition of
U.S. 1 Newspaper. All rights reserved.
Between the Lines
One week ago today U.S. 1 deliverers went out on their
appointed rounds, visited nearly 5,000 places of business, and
with notes regarding 27 different companies. Some appeared to be gone,
some seemed to have moved to new locations that may or may not have
been readily known, and others quite definitely appeared to be new
companies in old spaces.
Of the 27 initial reports only about a dozen were true moves. Some
others turned out to be small companies with doors locked while the
entire staff (both of them, perhaps) went out to lunch. Still others
were simply cases of a new deliverer missing a company located in
an out-of-the-way office.
But even a dozen changes a week in the greater Princeton business
community, multiplied by 50 weeks of publication a year, and you can
see the task that U.S. 1 has in compiling our long-awaited annual
Business Directory, which is due to arrive in our parking lot even
as we write this column at 12:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 9.
Keeping track of this flux is a year-round job, of course, and it
is assisted by the cooperation of literally thousands of businesses
that return our annual requests for information — we thank all
of you who responded this year.
Of course we make our share of mistakes. Some creep into the Business
Directory; others find their way into the newspaper. One of the more
unfortunate ones we made recently began with a report from a
ORS Automation in Research Park was closed, the deliverer reported.
A reporter called and discovered that it was not a case of the staff
being out on a lunch break — the company had indeed closed down
its operations. Somewhere in the brief conversation the reporter
she heard bankruptcy and that word was in our story printed on April
A few days later ORS executive Ed Kornstein called and graciously
set the record straight. The error was particularly unfortunate
Kornstein’s first job as president of ORS Automation in 1987 was to
bring the company out of Chapter 11 bankruptcy. It took him four
but he was successful. So he was understandably concerned when U.S.
1 reported that the reason for the public company’s closing was
"That has a negative connotation," says Kornstein. "We
closed down in an orderly fashion. Everybody got severance pay."
He attributes the demise of the 34-year-old firm to a decline in the
electronics industry. "We ran out of capital, and in this climate,
we couldn’t get financing."
ORS pioneered in the field of machine vision, development, production,
and installation of microprocessor-based vision systems for industrial
use. The company retains some intellectual property and some licensing
capabilities, says Kornstein. A math and physics major at New York
University with a master’s degree from Drexel University, he has
in the electro-optics area with RCA, then worked for Optel from 1970
to 1972. From 1972 to 1978 he was an independent consultant, and he
joined ORS in 1980.
So how did he pull out of Chapter 11 back in 1987? "I found a
niche market," says Kornstein. "We worked on the alignment
of screen printers for electronics manufacturers. We didn’t try to
be everything to everybody."
Ed Kornstein, president. 609-924-1667; fax, 609-924-2413. Home
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