It’s definite. The food court at Princeton Forrestal Village’s Market Hall will make way for a 60,000 foot upscale fitness center, complete with swimming pool. Stuart Polevoy will open his fourth CanDo fitness center, along with an affiliated company, Koi Spa, at Market Hall.
The food court will be moved to another location on Main Street. "We have begun to relocate non-retail tenants off Main Street," says Matthew Harding, president of Levin Management in a prepared statement. He believes that the fitness center can be expected to attract 5,000 to 6,000 members.
The Village’s new merchandising program is based on full-price retail stores and professional offices. With the Westin Hotel at one end of the 720,000 square foot mixed use development, the CanDo complex will anchor the other end. Ethan Goldsmith and Stanley Bernstein of Levin Management represented the landlord and Mike Maroon of the Acclaim Group represented CanDo.
"Maintaining the food court was an important part of our repositioning and merchandising plan," said Frederick Knapp, vice president of the Gale Company, in a statement. "With a wide variety of choices, the food court will continue to attract the significant daytime population of 147,000 people in our five-mile radius."
The Gale Company, 201 Rockingham Way, Suite 100, Princeton 08540. Greg Lezynski, vice president, leasing. 609-799-7400; fax, 609-799-0245. Home page: www.thegalecompany.com
Greg Olsen: 10, 9, 8 . . .
Greg Olsen, 60, has been a scientist, an inventor, and a tech company mogul, and now he is about to be an astronaut. The founder of Sensors Unlimited is part of the Soyuz TMA-7 crew that plans to launch on Saturday, October 1, from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan and head for the International Space Station on a seven-day voyage. Olsen paid an estimated $20 million to Virginia-based Space Adventures for the privilege of being the first "tourist" in space since the Columbia tragedy (www.GoToOrbit.com).
Two daughters and four grandchildren – including one who will attend the launch – will cheer him on. Also on the 12th expedition crew are NASA astronaut William McArthur and cosmonaut Valery Tokarev.
Two weeks ago, during the final stages of his 500 hours of pre-flight training, Olsen gave a telephone interview. That day he had done his third Zero G flight, which involves a 30-minute free fall. It’s a similar feeling to being on a boat in the middle of an ocean, where you don’t know where you are, says Olsen. "It feels great," says Olsen. "One thing I learned is that I don’t get sick. Some people get sick because it affects the inner ear."
His daily regimen: Get up at 6:30, run two miles at 7 a.m. (his time is 20 minutes), have breakfast, and go to classes from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. For each two-hour class Olsen has a translator. "Typically I am the only one in the class. It’s like being back in college again. You know you are going to be tested, and you have panic attacks," says Olsen. In addition to a weekly oral exam in Russian he gets tested weekly on procedures – how to use a piece of equipment, what if something goes wrong, what if you press the button and it doesn’t work, how to use the headset and communicate. From 4 to 6 p.m. he does physical training, alternating between weights and swimming. For a swimming test he will have to swim 800 meters in a certain time and swim underwater the length of the pool.
Simulations spice up the instruction. "Last Friday we spent eight hours on a simulator to practice what a day would be. They would throw problems at us and watch how we deal with the problems."
From 6 to 7 p.m. he takes a dinner break, followed by four hours of homework, and he turns out the lights at 11 p.m.
Is the Soyuz using his infrared camera system? "That’s still up in the air but I hope to do something with infrared imaging," Olsen says. Another potential project for Olsen could be to investigate the lower back pain that is experienced by long-term astronauts – how it develops and how they can deal with it.
Merle Haggard, Hank Williams, Chuck Berry, and Wagner will accompany Olsen on his iPod. Wagner? "’The Ride of the Valkyries’ will be for going up," says Olsen. "How could you not pick that one?"
Olsen has been working on his Russian language skills, which he will need this on the two-day journey to the space station, when the astronauts will speak to ground control only in Russian. But the space station operates in English by international agreement. Can he swear in Russian? "Not much," says Olsen. "I have tried to avoid that, though they have told me 20 ways to say the F word."
Space Adventures is the only company to have successfully launched private space explorers to the International Space Station. It also offers less intensive programs, such as zero-gravity and MiG flights.
Olsen was raised in Brooklyn, and with degrees from Fairleigh Dickinson and the University of Virginia, he worked at the Sarnoff from 1972 to 1983. He made his first fortune with Epitaxx, which he sold for $12 million to JDS Uniphase. He founded Sensors Unlimited in 1992 and sold it for $700 million in 2000. He led a management buy back in 2002, but last month the company was sold again. Goodrich Corporation, a Fortune 500 company in Charlotte, North Carolina, paid $60 million.
Olsen is not nervous about reacting to zero gravity, but he is a little worried about whether he will be able to get to sleep. The food is wholesome. "I was on a space diet for a week," says Olsen. "Let’s just say I look forward to the Greek salad at the Princetonian Diner."
Sensors Unlimited Inc., 3490 Route 1, Building 12, Princeton 08540. 609-520-0610; fax, 609-520-0638. Www.sensorsinc.com
The Verdict on Nyce: Eight Years in Prison, ‘One Lucky SOB’
Judge Bill Mathesius sentenced Jonathan Nyce, the 55-year-old founder and former CEO of Epigenesis, to eight years in prison for killing his wife, Michelle, in January, 2004. Because of time he has served, he will be eligible for parole in about six years.
Nyce claimed his wife’s death was an accident caused when she returned from a tryst with her lover and fell to the concrete floor of the garage. Because he tampered with the evidence – driving her body into a creek and then feigning innocence about that – he received an extra year in prison.
The prosecution wanted a murder conviction, but Nyce’s attorney, Robin Lord, convinced the jury that the appropriate verdict was passion-provocation manslaughter, for which the maximum sentence is 11 1/2 years (U.S. 1, July 20).
"He’s the luckiest S.O.B. in the world," one prosecutor was quoted as saying on September 22 when the sentence was handed down.
A minor firestorm erupted when Lord managed to spirit her client out of the courthouse, after the verdict, and over to her office. There, he quickly dressed in a coat and tie for an NBC Dateline interview before proceeding to jail. When informed of this lapse in procedure by a reporter, Judge Mathesius was irate.
New Legal Firm
Bernstein & Manahan, 2633 Main Street, Suite 102, Lawrenceville 08648. Edward M. Bernstein. 609-895-9001; fax, 609-895-9002.
Edward M. Bernstein and James P. Manahan have been practicing together on an informal basis since 1999 and formally opened a law practice together this year.
Manahan grew up in Dunellen, where his father was a corporate attorney and his mother a librarian; his brother is a judge in Morristown. He went to Rider College, Class of 1980, and to Rutgers/Camden for law school, and had he worked for Picco Herbert & Kennedy on West State Street, among others. Manahan does real estate, wills and trusts, small business organization and litigation, and some family law. He and his wife have a daughter.
Bernstein’s parents had owned Sanbern Furniture on Spruce Street in Ewing. A graduate of Lehigh University, Class of 1975, he earned his law degree at Emory and a master’s degree in tax law from Temple. He and his wife have two grown children.
Bernstein worked at Levy Levy & Alpert, Brener Wallack & Hill, and Edelstein Bernstein before that firm merged with Ridolfi Friedman in 1989. In 1999 he opened Edward M. Bernstein LLC, where he worked with Manahan.
Bernstein’s most famous case: In 1999 his client successfully sued Dow Jones/Telerate for $6 million including interest and damages. This case, which involved commodities contract arbitration, started in New York and finished in appellate court in New Jersey. Bernstein does taxation, business and corporate, commodities law, contracts and contract litigation.
Expansions: Swedish Device Firm
Q-Med Scandinavia, 103 Carnegie Center, Suite 301, Princeton 08540. Ruth Burns, vice president. 609-269-1100; fax, 609-269-1101. Home page: www.q-med.com
Q-Med AB has moved from its six-person office from Forrestal Village to 103 Carnegie Center, Suite 301. The U.S. marketing arm of Swedish parent Q-Med Scandinavia AB, the company educates physicians on the availability and efficacy of Deflux to treat vesicoureteral reflux, or VUR. VUR is a congenital defect that allows the urine to flow back up into the kidney found in one percent of all children ages 1 to 7 years. Though normally not a cause for alarm, if VUR co-occurs during a bout of urinary tract infection, the infection may travel with the urine back into the kidney.
An injectable gel, Deflux is delivered via a catheter into the urinary orifice in an out-patient procedure. The gel blocks urine from flowing back up the ureter toward the kidney, while allowing urine to flow naturally down to the bladder. The device lasts for the approximate seven years it takes for the child to outgrow the defect. At that point, the body has grown sufficiently for the ureter to be fixed in its proper place. The process is similar to inserting devices into a child’s ear to treat persistent ear infections, caused by the improper position of the young ear canal.
While the primary user of the device is the approximately 300 pediatric urologists in the U.S., the task, according to Deflux marketing director Mark Altenburger, is educating the much larger population of pediatricians to its existence and benefit. Deflux is the only FDA approved device to correct VUR; other treatments include repeated doses of antibiotics, or invasive surgery to correct the problem.
Altenburger explains that the device approach in minimally invasive, requires no incision or general anesthesia, and allows the patient to go home the same day. "Also, this precludes long-term exposure to antibiotics, which some parents are against because of the body’s ability to build resistance against certain antibiotics. Until Deflux came along, the only other option was surgery.
"Urinary tract infections can be a sign of many things; VUR is just one of them. But, our goal is to educate physicians and parents that if a child repeatedly has urinary infections, VUR should be considered as a possible cause. In that case, parents should request a referral to a pediatric urologist, because you can’t get into see one without a referral."
Based in Upsala, Sweden, Q-Med has six people in this office and 12 marketing representatives in North America.
Expansions: Tangible Value
Tangible Value LLC, 400 Wall Street, Princeton 08540. Ed Soesman, owner. 609-497-0693; fax, 609-497-1266. Home page: www.tangiblevalue.com
Edward H. Soesman expanded his software services firm, Tangible Value, from several small offices at 812 State Road to 4,000 square feet at Research Park. The company was founded in 2002 and 15 people work here now. Julie Nachamkin of the Schultz Organization helped find the new space and negotiate the lease.
Soesman, 46, went to Polytechnic Institute of New York and worked for Sperry Defense Electronics, and later for Unisys. He went out on his own as an independent consultant 20 years ago. Now his company focuses on software process improvement, project management, and the development of customized computer systems. Specifically, it offers object oriented analysis and design, database design and optimization, and Java and .NET applications.
New in Town
CFO Resources Inc., 521 Executive Drive, Montgomery Commons, Princeton 08540. Ken Brice, chief financial physician. 908-369-9069. Www.CFOResources.com
CFO Resources, a tax consulting and services firm, moved earlier this month from Clawson Road in Hillsborough to 521 Montgomery Commons in Princeton.
Under the direction of Ken Brice, CFO Resources helps business clients obtain the financing needed to grow, sort out accounting issues, prepare books for audits, prepare a company for a sale, perform due diligence, and recruit and train financial talent. It will also set up an incubation program for start-ups to provide all the needed resources, and take care of administrative tasks, while the client builds the business.
Kids Ink, 1676 North Olden Avenue, Ewing 08618. Kim Stout-Figueroa, executive director. 609-771-6040; fax, 609-771-6072.
Kids Ink, a state-funded Abbott pre-school, relocated this month from Lower Ferry Road in Ewing to 1676 North Olden Avenue. Serving 60 pre-schoolers ages three and four, the school has six openings remaining for this academic year. There is no minimum income requirement; anyone who lives in Trenton may enroll their child in this free program. Currently four classrooms serve 60 pre-schoolers with a ratio of two teachers to every 15 children. However owner and director Kim Stout-Figueroa reports the school will also occupy the second floor next year, providing additional classrooms for 120 children.
Stout-Figueroa started Kids Ink in 1996 with four children, including her own two sons, in Ewing. Kids Ink also has a full-service center on Parkway Avenue that provides childcare to 46 children, from birth through the age of six. While the Parkway location does not provide free childcare, it has 14 remaining openings for this academic year. Stout-Figueroa holds an associate degree in early childhood education from Mercer County College, and is certified in group education by DYFS.
Inner Circle LLC, 3560 Quakerbridge Road, Mercerville 08619. David Carmignani CPA, co-founder. 609-890-4600; fax, 609-890-4644.
Due to renovations, the four-person accounting and investment firm is in temporary quarters at 1700 Whitehorse Hamilton Square Road. Phones are being forwarded.
State Farm Insurance, 379 Princeton-Hightstown Road, Cranbury 08512. Carlos Duran, agent. 609-448-6700; fax, 609-448-0084.
This office of State Farm Insurance, under the direction of agent Carlos Duran, moved from 325 Franklin Street in Hightstown in August. Contact information remains the same.
Downsizing: Retreating to a Rock
After four prosperous years at 50 Washington Road, Sphinx Software fell prey to a corporate merger that resulted in a broken contract, says CEO Tariq Malik. Two years he had a global staff of 70, half of them offshore consultants. Now he has five or six. He is adjusting to the changing market by moving from 1,440 square feet of office space to an office in his Plainsboro home.
But he is determined to press on, like the general after whom he is named, Tariq Bin Zayid, conqueror of Spain. In 711 A.D. this general led Muslim troops from Africa to Gibraltar and ordered them to burn their boats. When astonished soldiers protested, he said, "We have not come here to return. Either we shall conquer and establish ourselves here or we will perish." They conquered and occupied the peninsula for 900 years.
"I was so inspired by that story that when I was a little kid that I changed my name," says Malik. "When there were unbelievable odds against him, he retreated to a rock and he ordered all the boats to be burned. It seems like I am on a rock now."
Malik’s firm offers V-rep (virtual representative) presentations for pharmaceutical promotions, Content Management System, and web-based collaborative software applications – CDs, presentations, virtual learning, E-annual reports, web portals, websites, and slide shows. But its premiere product is 7MM software for E-magazines.
Last year one of Malik’s major clients, Donnelly Financial, was publishing 2,000 pages per day. The documents were so big that they couldn’t get through the firewalls of their clients to be proofed. So Donnelly would send the documents to Sphinx, which uploaded them onto the Web so the clients could proof the pdf files from the Web. The contract was supposed to last for 12 months but was cut short after six months because, says Malik, because Donnelly got taken over by a Canadian firm.
"They walked away from the contract, leaving us high and dry," he says. "We had huge set up costs for 2,000 pages and there was a clear understanding that they would run us for at least a year." Sphinx was left with an unpaid bill of $250,000.
"I found out the hard way," says Malik, "that in the publishing industry, margins are so thin that nobody really has the money to go to the next stage." Prices have been slashed. Two years ago, he says, competitors were charging $200. Now they are down to $20 to $60 per page.
Companies with similar products include Newstand.com, which is owned by NY Times, www.OlivesSoftware.com and NextBooks.com. "The closest that comes to my technology is RichFX.com, which has done the world’s catalogs and has spent $6 to $8 million to capture market share," says Malik. "Somebody like us needs an arsenal of $5 to $6 million to get marketshare."
Malik is from Lahore, Pakistan, where his father has an engineering company that develops power plants. He majored in economics at the University of Essex in Great Britain, graduating in 1977 and doing post graduate work at the University of Warwick. He worked at Drexel and then at Morgan Stanley doing investment banking in the international arena. Among his clients is GMAC, for whom Sphinx does animated training videos.
Malik is married to a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, whom he met on business in Pakistan. She works as a consultant to the firm, and they have two school-aged children. Being a father, Malik says, ameliorates the frustrations of being a businessman. "Other adults told me that there was nothing more rewarding than children, and when you have children, you know there is nothing like it in the world," says Malik. "All the fun and chase of Wall Street pales when compared to being a parent."
Malik has an understandably chauvinistic attitude toward allocating offshore jobs according to geography. For math algorithms, he says, go to Hungary. To get code written, go to India. "They are the best bean counters in the world. But if you want to get front end design, go to Pakistan. The Shalimar Gardens and the Taj Mahal were built by our guys. We are the Italy of south Asia – we have large families, we love to eat, we can’t govern ourselves, but boy are we creative."
Nevertheless, few clients realize that multimedia work has been outsourced. "Not that we hide it, but for them we are local." The offshore creativity "has been such a joy for me," he says. "Every time I ask for a solution, they come back to me with six."
Sphinx Software, 2 Red Oak Drive, Plainsboro 08536. Tariq Malik, CEO. 609-799-1313; fax, 609-799-0063. Home page: www.sphinxsoftware.com
$25 Million for IAS
Institute for Advanced Study, Einstein Drive, Princeton 08540. Peter Goddard, director. 609-734-8000; fax, 609-924-8399. Home page: www.ias.edu
The Institute for Advanced Study has received a $25 million unrestricted cash gift from a fund established by former Microsoft executive Charles Simonyi.
Established in 2003, the $75 million foundation supports the arts, sciences and education. Simonyi has been a trustee of the Institute since 1997. The gift is intended to strengthen the general endowment of the Institute, so it can remain committed to its mission of fostering fundamental research.
JLT Re Solutions Inc. (JLT), 1009 Lenox Drive, Building Four West, Suite 110, Box 6400, Lawrenceville 08648-6400. John Januszewski, COO. 609-896-0555; fax, 609-896-2666.
With 10 employees, the reinsurance broker is moving to smaller space.
Global Project Resources LLC, 13 Jasmine Court, Lawrenceville 08648. Mary Stober, president. 609-895-1275. Www.globalprojectresources.com
Global Project Resources LLC, a Lawrenceville-based project management consulting company that was established in 2002, recently received state certification as a woman-owned business enterprise. The certification enables GPR’s owner, Mary F. Stober, to apply for contracts with state and corporate customers who are required by law to give preference to women and minority-owned businesses.
New Jersey’s Department of Commerce enables certified vendors to register online choosing a specific industry. Whenever a project matching that classification becomes open for bidding, the department notifies the approved vendors by E-mail.
Stober was surprised at how easy it was to complete the certification process. "The state requires some paperwork and business records going back three years. I submitted the information online and received certification within one week."
GPR provides training to junior-managers to help them feel more comfortable, navigating the language and cultural differences they encounter more and more frequently among business counterparts and clients. Stober points out that New Jersey itself is becoming more and more diverse. "We all need to learn how to work together, even if we don’t speak the same language or share cultural values.
"You don’t have to be an expert in every culture in the world. There are resources and techniques out there that managers can access to learn how to accommodate different backgrounds and beliefs, if they know where to look."
Stober delivers this knowledge firsthand through instructor-led workshops that address four topics: language and culture issues; specific communications techniques; the strengths and weaknesses of E-mail, voice mail, and face-to-face contact and how they are influenced by language and culture; and cash flow. "Corporations tend to think of these topics as soft skills. I point out how they affect cash flow, the ability to make money, and on a more personal level, a manager’s own job performance."
Stober can develop an E-learning program for a client providing diversity training, as well as put a team together for a very specific project, and guide a client on how to raise money in a different country, all of which are affected both by language and culture.
Though Stober runs a virtual business, she uses sub-contractors when needed. For instance, she might use a web designer to create a multilingual website, or translators who are familiar with medical terminology.
Stober grew up in New Jersey, where her father who worked in pharmaceuticals and a mother who worked as a social worker/psychotherapist. She holds a BA in Russian from Bryn Mawr, Class of 1986, and later earned an MBA in international management. She led tours to Russia, but her first professional overseas experience came when she represented EPV Energy Photo Voltaics in Budapest. She is fluent in Russian and German and can get along in French, Portuguese, and Hungarian.
Stober notes that there are more women-owned businesses now than ever. "I’m on the business development committee of Lawrenceville, and even here on Main Street in our little downtown area, there is a high concentration of women-owned businesses. In fact, almost every business is women-owned."
This proves to Stober that women are pursuing their dreams by going out on their own and starting new businesses. "It’s relatively easy to do, although it’s not always easy to sustain a business. There are a lot of resources in this state to help women and – really, anyone who wants to start a new business."
Spire Systems Inc., Montgomery Commons, Princeton 08540. Home page: www.spireinc.com
Spire Systems, a technology consulting firm has closed its office in Montgomery Commons. Calls are being taken at its Burlingame, California, headquarters (650-558-4030). The firm does project management, E-commerce services, data base planning, and network architecture.
GFK Market Measures/NOP World, 1060 State Road, Box 158, Princeton 08542-0158. 609-683-6100; fax, 609-683-6211. Home page: www.nopworld.com
In June NOP World and Market Measures were bought out by a German firm, and now the name on the sign out front has changed to GFK. United Business Media sold the firm for $694 million to GFK Aktiengesellshaft, based in Nuremberg. This division was founded as Response Analysis and had been known as Roper Starch.
Died: Cynthia L. Povich, 50, on September 14. Formerly executive director for the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services, she was a real estate agent at N.T. Callaway in Pennington and owned Nassau Court Interiors and Antiques.
Thomas A. Lies Memorial: Friday, September 30, at 4 p.m. at the Stuart School. Lies, who died August 16, had worked at American Cyanamid.