Corrections or additions?
This article by Barbara Fox was prepared for the July 16, 2003 edition of U.S. 1 Newspaper. All rights reserved.
Life in the Fast Lane
Kenneth L. Foxton closed the doors of his Canal Pointe-based
franchise, New Horizons Computer Learning Center, on Tuesday, July
8. Any back pay for eight former employees will be determined by bankruptcy
court, he said in a telephone interview.
Based in Anaheim, California, the New Horizons chain led the pack
of computer trainers by beating out IBM in 2001. Its web page lists
280 centers in 47 countries that deliver about 3 million student training
days per year. But the headquarters office disavows responsibility
for any of its franchisees’ debts and refers all calls to Linda Schwimmer
of Markowitz, Gravelle and Schwimmer, the Princeton Pike-based law
firm that represents the Princeton franchise.
"It’s a general downturn in the training industry. New Horizons
isn’t the only one," says Foxton. "Our corporate clients were
drawing back from purchasing. Our major client was the State of New
Jersey, and they have been buying very little for the last year and
a half. Training is one of the first places that gets cut." He
said he waited until July 1 to make the decision based on state contracts.
"In the new budgets the numbers aren’t there."
Schwimmer says she has filed a motion with Judge Katherine C. Ferguson
of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court to do a voluntary conversion of Foxton’s
bankruptcy case from Chapter 11 to Chapter 7. "The people who
were scheduled to take classes are being notified by Mr. Foxton,"
says Schwimmer. "Arrangements to reschedule the classes will depend
on whether the franchise is sold."
Employees who are owed money must get in line behind secured creditors
(such as the franchisor, the landlord, and the bankruptcy trustee)
who will get paid first. The bankruptcy code designates employees
who are owed up to $4,500 as "priority creditors," according
Those who have paid for training could travel to receive the training
in Iselin or King of Prussia, Pennsylvania. "Other New Horizons
locations will honor the training that has been paid for," says
Foxton. Another possibility is that someone will buy his territory
and assume the responsibility. "When we took over this franchise,
Lehigh Valley, two years ago, we honored a ton of free training."
Foxton is an alumnus of the University of Maryland, Class of 1986,
and has an MBA in finance and economics from Chapman in Orange, California.
"I’m not the only one in the economy facing this right now,"
says Foxton. "How I lived my life is that there is always a silver
lining in every cloud. I thought it was the best thing for everybody
involved to throw the towel in and move on to something else."
Canal Pointe Boulevard, Princeton. Kenneth Foxton, president. 609-452-9770.
Windsor Corporate Park, Building 100, East Windsor 08520. Frank Boni,
director of operations. 609-426-4165; fax, 609-308-7110. Home page:
A collection service company with 100 employees at Windsor Corporate
Park has seen its parent company, Outsourcing Solutions Inc., go into
Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Based near St. Louis Missouri, the holding
company says it is conducting business as usual and refers callers
to a hotline at 972-535-7150.
Before its acquisition, OSI Collection Services was known in New Jersey
as Payco. Among the three dozen other trade names that OSI Collection
Services uses are Furst & Furst; Retail Merchants Collection Service’
American Child Support Service Bureau; and Medical Billing Systems.
As a receivables management service, it helps other companies manage
their credit during the entire collections process.
Isn’t it an irony that a collections company has filed for bankruptcy?
"Some people have pointed that out," says David Garino, a
spokesperson for the firm.
"OSI’s Chapter 11 filing was prompted by a debt burden, not an
operational problem," he explains. "Anticipating a strong
economy, the company had made a series of acquisitions and took on
debt of $600 million. Before the filing, OSI had reached an agreement
with the majority of its creditors to reduce the debt to about $175
With the exception of Trenton, all municipalities in
Central New Jersey are taking advantage of the new tax on hotel stays.
They have introduced ordinances to piggyback their own taxes onto
the state tax that goes into effect on Friday, August 1.
The new law, approved by the state legislature on June 30, allows
the state to impose a seven percent state tax on hotel stays and permits
municipalities to charge an additional one percent tax.
Also under the law, starting next July, the state hotel tax will drop
to 5 percent, and municipalities can increase the local tax to 3 percent.
Even as the legislature signed off on this tax, ground was being broken
on the new Marriott Residence Inn to be built behind AmeriSuites
at Carnegie Center West. Carnegie Hotel Development Association, the
joint venture that includes, among others, Alan Landis and the Paramount
Hotel Group, is building the 120-suite hotel. Bill King of King Interests
is managing the development.
In Ewing near Merrill Lynch’s new campus, a Courtyard Marriott is
under construction. West Windsor has approved a Hilton Garden, and
Plainsboro has three hotels planned, including a Marriott Courtyard.This
month in South Brunswick a Woodbridge-based developer will resume
construction on a Hampton Inn, a project that had been stalled by
As for the city of Trenton — it has decided not to add a municipal
tax because some of its funds are invested in the city’s flagship
hotel, the Marriott Conference Hotel at Lafayette Yard.
12, Princeton 08540. Gregory H. Olsen, president. 609-520-0610; fax,
609-520-0638. Home page: www.sensorsinc.com
The fiber-optic company has a nine-month $890,000 contract
from the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA) to develop
a camera that will work under moonless night conditions with no perceptible
The camera will be the first all-solid state night vision 640×512
room temperature InGaAs (indium gallium arsenide) camera with this
level of sensitivity. Small, lightweight, and using low power, the
camera will be able to detect a camouflaged man at 100 meters under
starlight only conditions, says Martin H. Ettenberg, director of imaging
"This is the next generation in night vision imaging technology,
and will enable the U.S. to continue its dominance in military imaging,
says Chris Dries, vice president of R&D. "This contract underscores
the military’s confidence in our technological innovations."
DARPA aims to provide the soldier with multispectral imaging information.
It uses networking to let soldiers use what a press release calls
Founded in 1991 by Gregory Olsen, the 45-person firm makes indium
gallium arsenide (InGaAs) PlN and avalanche photodiode arrays that
are used in shortwave and near infra-red imaging.
195 Clarksville Road, Princeton Junction 08550. Sotirios Vahaviolos
president and CEO. 609-716-4000; fax, 609-716-0706. Home page:
Mistras Holdings has acquired Conam Inspection, a unit of Stavely
Services North America Inc. With accredited laboratories and 750 quality
control experts nationwide, Conam offers quality assurance, quality
control, and training services.
"I can’t think of a better fit as we begin to look ahead at the
expansion of our company worldwide," says Sotirios Vahaviolos,
president and CEO of Mistras Holdings. Founded as Physical Acoustics,
his firm provides technology, equipment, and services for nondestructive
testing and predictive maintenance, including the use of acoustic
emission, ultrasonics, eddy current, and vibration monitoring.
Trenton 08691. Mike Macomber, district manager. 609-588-5701; fax,
Analytic Stress Relieving Inc. has opened a metal heating and heat
treatment for refineries facility in Trenton. Founded in 1979, corporate
headquarters are located in Lafayette, Louisiana. The company sells
equipment and provides service for clients such as PSE&G and the Pennsylvania-based
Road, Princeton 08540. Robert Taylor, branch manager. 609-544-4719;
Fidelity Investments opened its fifth office in New Jersey at the
Lowe’s center on Route 1 North, opposite MarketFair. "Our decision
to build a full-service Investor Center in Princeton was driven by
the demand from our large base of customers in the area," says
Robert Taylor, branch manager of the 7,300 square foot office. An
alumnus of Ramapo College, he has been with Fidelity for 10 years.
1200, Princeton 08540. Armand Koskas, president and CEO. 609-243-8700;
fax, 609-987-0204. Home page: www.axens.net
IFP North America Inc. (IFPNA) has changed its name to Axens North
America. Axens was founded in the beginning of 2002 after the merger
of IFPNA and Procatalyse US. Headquartered in France, the company
is a petroleum research and licensing organization focusing on alternative
Broadway, New York 10018. 212-643-9530; fax, 609-655-5882. Home
The E-commerce and business consulting company closed an office at
2540 Route 130 in Cranbury. Calls are being taken at the New York
South Carolina 29646. 864-227-5262. Www.gindre.com
Gindre Copper LLC has moved from 2553 Route 130 in Cranbury to Greenwood,
South Carolina, with corporate headquarters in France. The company
provides copper products for the electrical industry, including copper
bars, flat strip in coil, flat and rod wire, and copper components.
Street, Trenton 08608. Joan Verplanck, president. 609-989-7888; fax,
Anne Evans Estabrook has been elected as the first woman chairman
for the state chamber in its 92-year history. Estabrook, who lives
in Spring Lake, owns Elberon Development Co., a family-owned real
estate holding company, and is also president of David O. Evans Inc.,
a property management and construction company.
assistant at Riker Danzig Scherer Hyland and Perretti in Trenton.
his Lambertville restaurant, David’s Yellow Brook Toad, to embark
on a round-the-world sailing trip.
at the New Jersey Manufacturers Insurance Co. on Sullivan Way.
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