Sherrie Preische has resigned as the executive director of the New Jersey Commission on Science & Technology to take charge of business development at Genmab. Preische moves to her new job on March 19, and Governor Jon S. Corzine has instituted a nationwide search for her replacement.
Preische’s board chairman, at the NJCST, had been Donald Drakeman, former CEO of Medarex. He has stepped down from both his NJCST post and his Medarex job under the pressure of an SEC investigation, although no wrongdoing had been found.
Now Preische will be working for Lisa Drakeman, who had helped her husband found Medarex and is now CEO of Genmab. Although Medarex still owns part of Genmab, the two companies maintain an arm’s length relationship. Genmab uses Medarex’s genetically engineered mice to create and develop human antibodies for the treatment of life threatening and debilitating diseases. It is based in Copenhagen, and the U.S. office is on North Harrison Street.
Preische had the NJCST post since 2002. The granddaughter of a physics teacher, Preische (pronounced pry-sha) majored in physics at Randolph-Macon Woman’s College in Lynchburg, Virginia, and in 1995 earned a PhD in plasma physics in the astrophysical science department of Princeton University. She served on the staff of Congressman Rush Holt as his district director, and she was a science and technology policy advisor to Governor James E. McGreevey.
Established in 1985, the Commission on Science and Technology is responsible for the development and oversight of policies and programs promoting science and technology research and entrepreneurship in New Jersey. The acting director, Joshua Trojak, was Preische’s hire.
The NJCST’s press release says it expects the national search will be “conducted on a relatively expeditious timetable.”
New Jersey Commission on Science & Technology, 28 West State Street, Box 832, Trenton 08625-0832; 609-984-1671; fax, 609-292-5920. Joshua Trojak, deputy director. Home page: www.state.nj.us/scitech
Monies for R&D
The Edison Innovation Fund has money to give to early stage technology companies; it has received the first $45 million of the $150 million promised by Governor Jon Corzine. One of its initiatives, the Edison Innovation R&D Fund, can dispense a total of $2.5 million this year.
A firm could receive from $100,000 to $500,000 from this R&D fund, formerly called the Entrepreneurial Partnership. Monday, April 16, is the deadline to submit the first stage of an application, and the date for the final application is May 16.
The Edison Innovation Fund is a new state effort under the Governor’s Economic Growth Strategy to support technology and life sciences companies and research at universities. Monies come to the New Jersey Commission on Science and Technology, and the grants are managed by the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA).
Other programs of the Edison Innovation fund include $1 million to guarantee angel funding through Jumpstart NJ, equity-like financing for up to $600,000 for early-stage research companies, commercialization funding for up to $200,000, and growth funding for products past the beta test phase for up to $1 million.
Another Edison Innovation plan, the Innovation Centers of Excellence Federal Matching Program, totals $2 million. It can award up to $500,000 to an institution that is going to apply for a federal grant in these priority areas: energy, life sciences, stem cell research, nanotechnology, and communications. These state grants are expected to add heft to the federal applications.
The EDA is an independent, self-sustaining state financing and development agency that supports the Governor’s Economic Growth Strategy. It reports that it distributed $660 million in financing assistance and business incentives last year.
Among the EDA projects: $425.5 million in bonds, loans, loan guarantees and environmental assistance grants for 187 projects, and 82 Business Employment Incentive Program (BEIP) grants worth an estimated $173.6 million over 10 years. The recipient companies plan to create nearly 11,500 new jobs in New Jersey and invest more than $1.1 billion in their projects. Grants went to
This year’s BEIP grants contribute to the 10-year total of 318 BEIP grants worth more than $1 billion. According to the EDA, the grants have spurred investment totaling approximately $10.8 billion for the state’s economy and helped create more than 63,400 new jobs.
Also last year, the EDA approved applications from 128 technology and biotech companies to share the $60 million from the Technology Business Tax Certificate Transfer Program. The EDA administers this program with the NJ Commission on Science and Technology and the state Division of Taxation. Among the projects:
Waterfront Technology Center in Camden received green building awards and began leasing up.
Edison VI Venture Fund received $2 million.
NextStage Capital L.P. venture fund received $400,000 to support the growth of early-stage technology companies.
New Markets Tax Credits Program received $125 million from a federal application. Trenton is one of three cities to benefit from this.
Port Authority of New York and New Jersey expanded.
New Jersey Urban Fund received a $185 million commitment.
Small and Mid-Size Businesses received more than $305 million in financing assistance. Manufacturers received nearly $121 million.
Entrepreneurial Training Institute curriculum was revamped, and more than 140 students enrolled in the program that helps them examine the feasibility of their business ideas and/or develop a formal business plan.
According to the press release, “This assistance is supporting new public/private investment of more than $1.8 billion in New Jersey’s economy that is expected to result in the creation of over 15,200 new, full-time jobs and almost 6,700 construction jobs.”
NJ Economic Development Authority, 36 West State Street, Box 990, Trenton 08625-0990; 609-292-1800; fax, 609-292-5722. Caren S. Franzini, CEO. Home page: www.njeda.com
Whole Foods Buyout To Close Wild Oats
Whole Foods Markets, which has its Princeton location at the Windsor Green shopping center, has gobbled up Wild Oats Community Market, and Wild Oats will close its store at 255 Nassau Street. The buyout was in February, and the Wild Oats lease was reportedly due for resigning in May.
A health food store based in Orange, New Jersey, is expected to move into the Nassau Street store.
Whole Foods had opened Princeton’s 62,000 square foot store, one of largest in the nation, in 2004. The 25-year-old chain is now the largest natural foods grocery chain in the world. Among its other acquisitions are Bread & Circus and Fresh Fields (U.S. 1, September 22, 2004).
Wild Oats, based in Boulder, Colorado, opened its Princeton store in 1998. With just 15,000 square feet, it is considerably smaller than others in the chain.
Wild Oats Community Market, 255 Nassau Street, Princeton 08540. 609-683-8737 or 609-924-4993; fax, 609-497-9198. Home page: www.wildoats.com
American Boychoir School, 19 Lambert Drive, Princeton 08540; 609-924-5858; fax, 609-924-5812. Charles G. Bickford, president. Home page: www.americanboychoir.org
Charles G. Bickford, the new president of the American Boychoir School, graduated from Franklin and Marshall College and is a medieval scholar with a PhD from the University of Pennsylvania. He made his name in fundraising at the New Hampshire Humanities Council.
“I am excited and privileged to be part of the 70-year old tradition that is the American Boychoir,” said Bickford in a press release. “The American Boychoir represents what is best about America; they are a microcosm, a diverse population coming together, preserving traditions, yet through music, creating a voice that is uniquely American.” The school for grades 5 to 8 has professional touring choirs that perform more than 150 concerts annually.
The Mega Group, 2 Graphics Drive, Ewing 08628; 609-637-0080; fax, 609-637-0415. Mark A. Iorio, CEO. www.themegagroup.com
Mark Iorio has expanded the Mega Group from 10,000 square feet at 4 Crossroads Industrial Drive in Robbinsville to 25,000 feet at 2 Graphics Drive, and the phone and fax are new. “We needed the space,” says Iorio, “because business has changed.”
The Mega Group’s varied missions include marketing communications, printing, advertising, website development, database management and fulfillment, and brand training. But his firm had diversified in the late ‘90s, moving from marketing communications, printing, and advertising, to building online company stores. As a result, it needed inventory storage space. One big contract was for distributing literature and promotional merchandise for a large nonprofit agency.
So, represented by Jerry Fennelly of NAI Fennelly, Iorio bought the former Croda Ink manufacturing building, which had been empty for five years. The landlord, American Properties, had thought it would be revamped as the new Ewing Senior Center, but that plan cratered when Mercer County decided to make use of the old Jewish Community Center instead. “That left American Properties had a commercial property that they didn’t want,” says Iorio. The same owners are building apartment complexes called Scotch Run and the Madison (next to ETS).
Iorio is an active alumnus of the College of New Jersey, Class of 1979, where he is on the business advisory council and the foundation board. He started out at GT Sylvania, worked in Bensalem, and started this firm in 1987. His father has a parallel business, M&B Associates, at Thomas Rhodes Industrial Drive.
MWH Advertising Inc., 47 Hulfish Street, Suite 400, Princeton 08542; 609-430-9925; fax, 609-945-2298. Martin W. Hilson, president. Home page: www.mwhads.com
The advertising agency moved, in February, from 4372 Province Line Road, and it has six employees on Hulfish Street. It is a full service design and advertising firm.
Mayo-Giuliano Media LLC, 856 Route 206, Hillsborough 08844; 908-874-9200; fax, 908-904-9728. Jodi Mayo, principal. Home page: www.mgmedia.com
After two years in a home office on Orchard Road and Skillman, Jodi Mayo (along with business partner Joe Giuliano) expanded to an office in Hillsborough, and the phone number has changed. They have added a bookkeeper and a graphic artist. Prominent on their client list are companies in the building material industry.
Giuliano grew up in Rockland County, New York, and graduated from the School of Visual Arts in Manhattan. He has been creative director for a trade magazine for the building and remodeling industry, Remodeling News. Mayo has a BA in economics from Penn State University and worked at VirgoCommunications, a Fairfield advertising agency.
Brittain-Parnell Signs Inc., 271 Whitehead Road, Hamilton 08619; 609-890-0300; fax, 609-890-0301. Graham Johns, general manager. Home page: www.bpsigns.net
The sign company moved from 1383 Lower Ferry Road in West Trenton to Whitehead Road in Hamilton. Phone and fax are new. The firm offers design, fabrication, installation, and service.
Leadership New Jersey, 216 West State Street, Trenton 08608; 609-802-0880; fax, 608-802-0883. Thomas G. Dallessio, executive director. Home page: www.leadershipnj.org
Leadership New Jersey moved from Church Street in New Brunswick to West State Street in Trenton. It offers public policy seminars for civic leaders.
Redpoint Bio/Linguagen, 2005 Eastpark Boulevard, Eastpark at Exit 8, Cranbury 08512; 609-860-1500; fax, 609-860-5900. F. Raymond Salemme, CEO. www.redpointbio.com
Linguagen changed its name to Redpoint Bio in December. The name, a rock climbing term, refers to a rapid clean ascent of a difficult route, enabled through careful preparation and experience. The new logo, devised by CEO F. Raymond Salemme, depicts two mountains.
“A lot of people had a problem pronouncing Linguagen,” says a spokesperson. “And they thought we were a translating service.”
Redpoint Bio is a biotechnology company that does research in molecular biology of taste signaling for the flavor industries — pharmaceutical, food and beverage companies. It plans to move sometime this year to 18,577 square feet at 7 Graphics Drive.
Tom Giannone of Cushman & Wakefield represented the tenant in the long-term lease of the property, a 72,000-square foot building owned by BioMed Realty Trust.
Beckhill Door Co., Box 4215, Hamilton 08610; 609-581-3880; fax, 609-581-3585. Don Beckley, president. Home page: www.Beckhill.com
Don and Kathy Beckley closed their retail store at 1549 Olden Avenue, but they are still selling, servicing, and installing hollow metal doors, frames and hardware. Republic Doors & Frames is one of their lines.
Sonal Sportswear, 485 Seventh Avenue, Suite 200, Box 630, New York 10018; 212-730-7030. Subash Kumar, president. www.sonalsportswear.com
Sonal Sportswear, an importer of women’s clothing, opened a warehouse at 1095 Cranbury-South River Road in Jamesburg in 2004. It closed the warehouse last summer, and though it retains a Plainsboro post office box (Box 630, Plainsboro 08536-0830) it answers the phone at its Seventh Avenue headquarters.
Blue Tulip, 401 Bordentown Hedding Road, Bordentown 08505. 609-291-7800; fax, 609-291-8820. Home page: www.bluetulip.biz
Blue Tulip moved its headquarters from Alexander Road to Bordentown but retains, at Nassau Park, a retail store for personalized gifts, cards, papers, and entertaining supplies. It has received $7 million in second-round financing for its 17-store chain.
PharmaEssentiA Co. Ltd., 11 Deer Park Drive, Suite 102-I, Monmouth Junction 08852; 732-335-9422. Home page: www.pharmaessentia.com
A biotech firm that does VLC research has closed its Deer Park Drive laboratory, but operations continue in Taiwan.
Uniglobe All Around Travel. Kristine Toth, owner.
Uniglobe All Around Travel has closed its doors at on Princeton Avenue in Hopewell. It was founded in 1971.