Deep in sawdust, many homeowners don’t think to call their insurance companies to report a new rec room or a freshly remodeled kitchen. Marshall & Swift/Boeckh saw a business opportunity in this lapse. The 70-year-old insurance valuation company has sales and administration offices at 101 College Road East that compiles construction cost data for the insurance and construction industries. It recently added a Lawrence location that includes a call center, which places calls to homeowners on behalf of their insurance companies.
Janna Kost, the company’s marketing manager at its Wisconsin headquarters, explains that Marshall & Swift acts as a contractor. Working on behalf of insurers, it trains and employs customer service representatives to make the calls, during which they gather information on anything that may have affected a home’s value since a policy was taken out. This can be a help to homeowners, ensuring that they will not be left short should they need to submit a claim. It is also a help to insurance companies.
"They’ve been hurting," Kost says. The extra premiums collected from customers who need to insure home upgrades make a difference to the insurers’ bottom lines. Demand for this service is climbing. After calling Lori Emmett, vice president of teleservices and manager of the Lawrence branch, Kost reports that Emmett is too busy to talk, but that she wants to get word out that she is looking for more reps.
The jobs pay $9.50 an hour to start and climbs to $10 after 30 days. There is a $100 signing bonus, and, says Kost, "they’re always having contests. It’s a fun place to work."
The call service is just one of Marshall & Swift’s businesses. It also inspects properties for insurers. Administrative offices for the inspection division are also located in the new Lawrence location. The company is looking for personnel for this division, too. In fact, says Kost, there are a number of openings for positions at the Lawrence office. (Full details are at www.marshallswift.com)
The company chose Lawrence for its expansion, says Kost, because it has roots here, its president works from here, and the area is a good place in which to recruit employees.
Marshall & Field’s other services include valuation of commercial and residential properties. Among its new offerings is a web-based Geocoding Solutions. This Internet tool enables residential and commercial property "look-ups" by entering a street address. The information returned includes premium tax jurisdiction, geographic hazards, flood zone determination, distance to coastline, brush fire zones, and earthquake risk.
It is insurance professionals who subscribe to the service, but a quick look at the risk factors is enough to make homeowners with new Sub Zero refrigerators and media rooms dial up their insurers to make sure their post-renovation coverage is adequate.
— Kathleen McGinn Spring
Marshall & Swift/Boekh or Valuation Data Warehouse (VDW), 505 Lawrence Square Boulevard South, Lawrenceville 08648. Lori K. Emmett, vice president teleservices. 609-689-9366; fax, 609-689-6700.
Marshall & Swift/Boeckh (MS/B), 101 College Road East, Princeton 08540. Robert W. Crine Jr., president. 609-987-8333; fax, 609-452-5705. Home page: www.marshallswift.com
#h#Heat Treatments: Thermal Solutions Inc.#/h#
Every weld seam on a pressure vessel at a refinery needs to be heat treated to relieve its stress, and a company devoted to this safety procedure has moved to Windsor Industrial Park. Thermal Solutions Inc. does on-site thermal processing for the petrochemical and power generating industries.
"We bring the heat to the customer sites — power plants, refineries, factories, and fabrication shops.," says Dennis Thompson, district manager of the company based in Littleton, Colorado. "All welding on pressure vessels need to be stress relieved, so we come to the site with heat treating systems. We also design heat treating equipment and furnaces, and we build furnaces at client sites."
Thompson grew up in central New Jersey, where his father was a tradesman and carpenter. He majored in mechanical engineering at New York University, Class of 1969, has a master’s degree from NYU, and did PhD studies at Rutgers. Before joining this company he had worked for other thermal processing firms doing furnaces, kilns, and onsite heat treating. His clients include Sunoco, Conoco, and Valero in the Paulsboro and Philadelphia areas, plus power plants in New York, Vermont, and Maine.
About two dozen companies do this kind of work, but fewer than six of them are national. This is one of Thermal Solutions’ nine district offices, and it was represented in this move by Barry Blackwell of Commercial Property Network. Additional offices are in Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Houston, Tulsa, Columbus, and Chicago, plus smaller satellite offices.
"Power plants have scheduled outages for preventive maintenance," says Thompson, "and refineries have a similar function, called turnarounds." At the time of the phone interview, he had just finished a three-week turnaround, for which different parts of the refinery were shut down in sequence. "Typically the refinery does not have specialists for major capital improvement projects. Their general and mechanical contractors subcontract the specialist work."
Thermal Solutions Inc., 92 North Main Street, Windsor Industrial Park, Suite 6 A, Windsor 08561. Dennis Thompson, district manager. 609-426-1953; fax, 609-426-0803. Home page: www.tsithermalsolutions.com
#h#Expansions: Web 401K, Alternative Financial, Quantum, Shylit#/h#
Web 401K, 300 Alexander Park, Princeton 08540. 609-275-2909; fax, 609-275-8887. Home page: www.web401k.com
A pension plan administration firm expanded on January 1 from 3,200 square feet at Princeton Meadows Office Center to 3,500 feet at 300 Alexander Park. Web401K administers 401K plans for medium to large companies, ranging from 100 to 6,000 employees and including several publicly traded companies. It used to be known as Johnson & Farago. Bill Barish of Commercial Property Network represented the tenant.
Alternative Financial Concepts Inc., 16 Wall Street, Second Floor, Princeton 08540. Frank Cunder, president. 609-683-0781; fax, 609-683-0782.
Frank Cunder has moved his office from Emmons Drive to Research Park. "I just finished up a massive job and wanted to organize my files at a different location," he says. A 1970 graduate of Rutgers, he does actuarial and pension consulting — design, installation, administration, and termination of pension and profit sharing plans.
Quantum Management Group Inc., 2365 A Route 33, Robbinsville 08691. Gail Helfrick, principal. 609-259-4091; fax, 609-259-4092. Home page: www.qmg-inc.com
The management group moved last year from one room on Nottingham way to a converted barn formerly occupied by Williams Architects. It has two floors here and does project management for environmental liabilities — acquisitions, divestitures, decontamination, contract management, ISRA, Superfund, and petroleum retail facilities.
Ben Shylit CPA, 4105 Route 1 South, Suite 16, Monmouth Junction 08852. 732-329-8880; fax, 732-329-6852.
On November 1 Ben Shylit bought the accounting practice of Allen Dokovna, a 19-year-old business at Windsor Business Park. Dokovna has retired. Shylit’s business, founded in 1989, has five employees. It audits personal taxes and business taxes, and does financial planning and estate planning.
Alliance for Arts Education NJ, 165 Third Avenue, Building 4A, Bordentown 08505. Denise Sullivan, interim director. Home page: www.aaenj.org
The arts education organization moved last month from 130 West State Street in Trenton to Bordentown. Phone and fax are new. Founded in 1979, it offers arts education resources, funding opportunities, advocacy, and information services. Denise Sullivan is the interim director and lone employee at this time.
Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Central New Jersey, 253 Nassau Street, Princeton 08540. R. Scott Dingwall, center director. 609-924-2896; fax, 609-924-2937.
In December the credit and debt counseling service moved from 117 Estates Boulevard in Ewing to the house of its parent organization, Family Guidance Center. It has 13 workers and occupies the second and third floor of the house on Nassau Street next to Wild Oats Market. Phone and fax are new.
Packaging Corporation of America (PCA), 2540 Route 130, Suite 113, Cranbury 08512. Thomas Hart, project manager. 609-409-5304; fax, 609-395-0272. Home page: www.packagingcorp.com
This company moved to Route 130 from Black Horse Lane in New Brunswick and dropped from 70 workers to 8. In New Brunswick the company designed and made corrugated boxes and displays. But all the factory workers and customer service people have been laid off or are working elsewhere, and now this site does design only. Thomas Hart, the project manager, heads a staff of eight designers.
This division of PCA has its headquarters in Lake Forest, Illinois, and used to be owned by Tenneco. Earlier it was known as Menasha Color.
Performance Development Corporation, 218 Oak Creek Circle, East Windsor 08520. Arvind Shah, principal. 609-443-1226; fax, 609-448-8789. Home page: www.perfdev.com
For restructuring reasons, the company moved from 707 Alexander Road on January 1. Phone and fax are new. It does management consulting — E-commerce planning, business process reengineering, strategic visioning, enterprise architecture development, IT systems planning, and change management.
Princeton Desktop Systems Inc., Box 914, Princeton Junction 08550-0914. Gerald J. Clancy, president. 609-897-9700; fax, 609-897-9042. Www.billtrak.com
After one of Trenton’s Victorian houses on State Street flooded in November, and rain poured down on a computer, the company moved to Princeton Junction. "We didn’t really need to be in Trenton at that point," says Jerry Clancy. Phone and fax are new.
Founded in 1987, the company does electronic and paper publishing. Its online legislative management system, BillTrak, installs as a database on a PC with a Windows-based program and can track committee agendas, bill texts, voting reports (by bill or legislator), customized session day reports, and more. Clancy also publishes the New Jersey Legislative Journal and works on database applications.
Valcopy Inc., 1580 Reed Road, Suite B2, Pennington 08534. Mark D. Snyder, CEO. 609-737-0100; fax, 609-737-0090. Home page: www.valcopy.com
The office equipment store moved from 8,700 square feet on Southard Street in Trenton to 2,000 square feet on Reed Road. It offers sales and services of name brand Hewlett Packard, Minolta, and Lexmark printers, copiers, and faxes.
Telequest Inc., 66 Witherspoon Street, Suite 383, Princeton 08542. Richard S. Blofson, partner. 609-430-3004; fax, 609-497-9739. Www.telequestinc.com
Richard Blofson, Scott Nielson, and Dan Preston moved Telequest from 714 South Clinton Avenue in Trenton and have a mailing address at 66 Witherspoon Street. They do E-media for E-business, streaming video, audio and interactive media for E-commerce and training applications via the internet — CD-ROMs, videos, documentary films.
Current projects include an admissions program for Princeton Day School which will be on CD, video, and the web. Other projects are a program for Harvard University on expository writing and a company brochure for InfraMetals, headquartered in Langhorne, Pennsylvania. "Related to the antiwar ad that we made — that was refused at the last minute by Comcast — we are heavily involved in filming a documentary on free speech," says Blofson.
John Guthrie, a brand and image consultant, moved his firm Guthrie & Company from Telequest’s building to Pennington.
Corporate Addressing Services (CAS), 12 Stults Road, Suite 100, Box 617, Monmouth Junction 08852-0617. Edward M. Cenkner Jr. 732-329-9579; fax, 732-438-0551. Home page: www.corporateaddressing.com
The lettershop and mail service moved in February from 335 New Road to its new quarters inside the AlphaGraphics shop, and it has a new phone and fax. The proprietor, Ed Cenkner, grew up in Bayonne and took night classes at St. Peter’s College, majoring in business management and working as a data center manager. He founded the company in 1992 and has two full-time and four part-time employees.
Phil Kramer Photographers Inc., 17 Hulfish Street, Suite 207, Princeton 08542. 609-497-1600; fax, 609-497-1601. Www.pkphoto.com
Phil Kramer has moved his photography studio from retail space on Witherspoon Street to Hulfish Street. Phone and fax are the same. The studio specializes in weddings and portraiture, including families, babies, and executives, and it has its headquarters in Philadelphia.
Kren Business Machines, 134 Jackson Avenue, Princeton 08540. Albert Kren, owner. 609-252-1100.
Albert Kren moved from Bresnahan Road in Robbinsville last November. Since 1960 he has been servicing and selling typewriters, fax machines, copiers, and printers.
A. Nelessen Associates, 49 Millstone River Road, Belle Mead 08502. Anton C. Nelessen, president. 908-431-0104; fax, 908-431-0114. Home page: www.nelessen.org
Anton Nelessen moved from an office on the second floor of 134 Nassau Street to what an employee describes as his boss’s "dream house," a home with an atrium greenhouse and swimming pool. Nelessen has outfitted his offices on the second floor of the home. His firm does professional planning and urban design for communities and developers.
Sterling Title Agency, 2662 Nottingham Way, Hamilton 08619. Jeanne DeStefano, owner. 609-584-8810; fax, 609-584-8816. Home page: www.sterlingtitleagency.com
Last summer Sterling Title moved from 2 Tree Farm, Pennington Point West, where it does title searches and paralegal services for attorneys.
AccounTec Inc., 38 Windsor Road, Southampton 08088. April Kaplan, owner. 609-859-4200; fax, 609-859-0151.
AccounTec Inc., the firm started by Juilliard-trained saxophonist April Kaplan, moved from 1206 Cranbury-South River to Southampton. It is an accounting and bookkeeping service.
Bergen Briller Group, 1787 Wrightstown Road, Newtown 18940. Michael Bergen, owner. 215-369-4190; fax, 215-269-4185. Home page: www.bbgsearch.com
Last year the executive search firm left Jefferson Plaza. Formerly it had been at the Carnegie Center. Current headquarters is in Newtown, and there are offices in Morganville and Manhattan.
CCS Labs, 4091 Quakerbridge Road, West Windsor 08550. 609-275-5594; fax, 609-275-5595.
The credit collection service of Comcast has closed and has no directory listing.
Creative Publishing International/Two-Can Publishing LLC, 18705 Lake Drive East, Chanhassen 55317. Michael Eleftheriou, CEO. 609-921-6700; fax, 609-921-3349. Www.creativepub.com
Two-Can Publishing LLC, formerly located at 234 Nassau Street, was sold to a Minnesota-based book publisher. Allan Lang was in charge of the Princeton-based firm.
The Delta Concept, 1307 Walton Creek Drive, Midlothian 23114. C. Merle Hirschman, owner. 804-897-0878; fax, 804-897-0879. Home page: www.deltaconcept.com
Merle Hirschman has moved from Princeton Junction to Virginia and taken her business with her. She founded the firm in 1994 and does general management consulting, outsource purchasing and contingency-based expense reduction.
Distribution Management Associates, Box 6843, Bridgewater 08807-0843. Shyam S. Sethi CMC, executive director. 609-497-1040.
In February the consulting group moved to Bridgewater from Suite 102 A at 12 Roszel Road and has changed its name. "We had merged with Dechert Hampe but decided to go our own way," says Shyam Sethi. "Our practice area is supply chain management."
The son of an attorney, Sethi was a mechanical engineer at Berla Institute of Technology and did graduate study in industrial engineering operations research at the University of Wisconsin. In 1970 he went to work for Drake Sheahan/Stewart Dougall, and became vice president in 1973. He set up his own consulting group, DMA, in Scotch Plains in 1980 and moved to Princeton in 1988, merging with Dechert Hampe in 1996.
Mary C. Perone, 85, on March 5. Former chair of Mercer County Board of Social Services, she served 50 years as a Democratic committeewoman.
Philip Benjamin Roemer, 33, on March 7. He was a software engineer at BASF Corporation on Quakerbridge Road and moderator and associate editor of www.4x4Wire.com.