Planning Ahead Biotech Conference

Women’s Futures Delivered by Satellite

Corrections or additions?

These articles by Kathleen McGinn Spring were prepared for the

April 4, 2001 edition of U.S. 1 Newspaper. All rights reserved.

Office Space: Bringing in Broadband

New Jersey property managers are behind the curve in

wiring their buildings for high-speed broadband access, says Steve

Weiss, real estate account manager for Winstar, a broadband service

provider. But Weiss’ comments make it clear that getting wired is

no simple matter. Weiss works from offices in both New York City and

Union, and finds property managers in the city to be a much easier

sell. "I found in New Jersey, when I started talking to property

managers, they look at you like you have three heads."

Touting the benefits of fitting out office buildings for high

bandwidth

telecom and Internet, Weiss moderates one of several panels at the

National Association of Industrial and Office Properties’ day long

conference, "Technology E-ssentials: New Jersey’s only real estate

technology conference for the beginner and expert," on Wednesday,

April 11, at 8 a.m. at the Woodbridge Hilton in Iselin. Cost: $120.

Call 732-417-9010.

Weiss started out intending to be a scientist. A 1982 Rutgers

graduate,

he was a bio-chem major. After college he went to work for

Princeton-based

biotech, Liposome, becoming that company’s 11th employee. He worked

for Liposome for seven years before deciding "I had gone as far

as I could in science." He enrolled in a part-time MBA program

at New York University. Initially planning to use his business degree

to go into management with a pharmaceutical company, he says "in

my third year, I decided I’d always had an interest in real estate.

So I switched."

After working with a small real estate company "just to get my

feet wet," Weiss moved on to a large mortgage banking firm. Then

last year, looking for something different, he heard about Winstar

and was drawn to the opportunity to work at a career that combined

real estate and technology.

Winstar equips office buildings for high bandwidth communications

using "line of sight" technology. This involves installing

radio equipment in the building and beaming signals through the air

from a central hub. Tenants in the building are offered the option

for tapping into the system. Those that do so become Winstar

customers.

Often, there are several competing high-bandwidth providers in a

building.

Weiss says property managers benefit from offering their tenants a

crack at high speed communication, and offers the following pluses

along with a cautionary note:

Diversity and redundancy. Buildings serviced by just one

carrier risk "being cut off from the world" should their lines

be cut, Weiss says. Fires, floods, careless construction crews, the

menaces to the wires carrying the phone and Internet signals are

legion.

Buildings that allow several broadband providers to set up shop in

their basements achieve a redundancy that could save the day. If some

of the wires enter the building from one side, and some from the

other,

so much better, Weiss says.

While broadband often is delivered through fiber optic cable, signals

from Winstar and similar companies are delivered through the air.

Allowing such a communications provider into a building achieves

diversity,

Weiss says, by giving tenants a way to keep their E-mails flying and

their customer support centers up even if a disaster of some sort

should cut cables leading into the building. Line of sight service

can be extended to tenants quickly, he says, minimizing any downtime

for offices affected by outages in cable-based systems.

A marketing tool. Weiss senses a lack of urgency among

New Jersey property managers. He theorizes that with a strong economy

keeping their buildings full, many are in no great hurry to offer

tenants a smorgasbord of high-bandwidth communications options. Some

tenants, in the financial industry, for example, already need high

bandwidth, and other industries are not far behind in needing —

or wanting — lightening fast Internet and goodies such as clear

video conferencing. Property managers that offer these options will

be ahead of the game, Weiss says, and will be in a strong position

to attract and retain the best tenants in any economic slowdown.

A source of revenue. Broadband providers generally do

all the work of fitting out a building, and, in exchange for a chance

to sign up tenants for services, compensate building owners. Weiss

did not want to go into specifics of how Winstar structures its

leases,

but says building owners typically are paid fees as tenants sign up.

Another advantage, he says, is that broadband is seen as a capital

improvement.

Some problems. Broadband equipment takes up space. It

is generally placed in areas like basements that couldn’t be rented

anyway, but, Weiss says, this is an issue with some property managers.

The radio equipment Winstar installs requires 40 to 60 square feet

of space in an area large enough so that doors to its cabinets can

be opened. The system also requires a mast and antennae. Different

broadband systems require different configurations. Sometimes, Weiss

says, property managers don’t want to deal with the hassles. "It’s

too much. Too confusing."

And sometimes, property managers who want the technology have trouble

getting it. A line of sight system like Winstar’s requires that its

customers be in buildings with an unobstructed view of its hub. If

a taller building is in the way, there can be no service. Not every

building is within sight of a hub. But broadband via fiber optic cable

is expensive to install, and far from universally available.

Still, pressure on property managers to offer tenants access

to cutting edge communication connections surely will build.

"Right

now, in a lot of cases it’s looked at as an amenity," Weiss says.

"But I believe in a couple of years, it will be a necessity."

Top Of Page
Planning Ahead Biotech Conference

Biotech 2001: Opportunities in the Nation’s

Pharmaceutical

Center takes place on Monday and Tuesday, April 23 and 24 at the

Atlantic

City Sheraton and the Atlantic City Convention Center. Billed as the

largest regional biotechnology conference in the country, the event

is a joint undertaking of the Biotechnology Council of New Jersey

and the Pennsylvania Biotechnology Association. The organizations’

goal is to build a new biotechnology industry by capitalizing on the

concentration of pharmaceutical giants in the region.

The keynote speaker is Jan Leschly, chairman and CEO, Care Capital

at Princeton Overlook. One CEO breakfast, by invitation only, features

former senior pharma executives talking about what it is like to make

the transition to biotech. They include John Jackson, chairman

and CEO, Celgene Company; David U’Prichard, CEO, 3-Dimensional

Pharmaceuticals Inc.; P. Roy Vagelos, chairman, Regeneron

Pharmaceuticals

Inc.; and Douglas Watson, president and CEO, ValiGen Inc.

U’Prichard’s

company has a new branch at Cedar Brook Corporate Center and ValiGen

is opening offices on Carter Road.

Another ValiGen executive, Richard Metz, executive director

of product development, is on an "Introduction to

Biotechnology"

panel, a basic biotechnology course that will focus on cloning, gene

therapy, transgenesis, plant genetics, mapping the human genome, drug

and vaccine development, plant biotechnology, and proteomics.

Manya Deehr, a partner at Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, moderates

a "Law and Biotechnology" workshop to examine issues in the

law that executives need to understand in order to succesfully manage

transactions in the biotechnology arena. Deehr’s law firm has a branch

at the Carnegie Center.

Linda Griggs, also a partner at Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, will

discuss "Living with Disclosure: What Impact are the New SEC

Regulations

Having on Biotech."

Lisa Drakeman, CEO of Genmab A/S and an officer at Medarex on

State Road, is on the panel to discuss how biotechs can tap into

partners

and dollars in Europe and Japan. Title: "Finding an International

Pharmaceutical Partner."

"Labor Issues — Finding and Recruiting Key People" is

the topic for Gene Mancino, president, Blau Mancino Associates

at 12 Roszel Road. His panel will address this question: "In the

tightest biotechnology market in history, how can your company find,

hire, and retain the scientists and executives it so desperately

needs?"

Top Of Page
Women’s Futures Delivered by Satellite

The Bordentown site for this event was canceled at the last minute and

those who registered will attend in Manhattan. This story did not run

in the print edition.

Tom Peters, the management guru, and Martha

Stewart, the housekeeping guru, are among the national celebrities

for a one-day global gathering of business women, on Thursday, April

5, 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Marcy Maguire is among the local

leaders of the event that will be downlinked by satellite to the

Maguires’

Chevy dealership on 840 Route 206 in Bordentown. Ticket prices are

$259, including lunch and materials, and may be sold out. Call

212-221-1713.

Susan Willett Bird, founder of Women.future, is a graduate of

Marquette and Stanford Law School. She has worked for IBM and held

a senior position with real estate company Grubb & Ellis. She built

her own real estate firm and founded a CD-ROM based marketing company

that partnered with Apple Computer to do patent-protected interactive

multimedia marketing of real estate and related products. Bird has

put these topics on the agenda for what she calls the

"MainEvent."

How can women capitalize upon their unique leadership

strengths in the new Internet economy?

What are the components of this new style of leadership,

and how can an understanding of them help employers attract and retain

those with talent?

What products and services captivate women and how should

companies deliver an "experience" that motivates these

purchase

decision-makers?

How can participation benefit men as employers, employees,

and marketers?

"This is the world’s foremost global gathering of businesswomen

— from small business owners to senior executives to women in

the professions," say the organizers. Maguire and her husband also

own Windsor

Nissan in Hightstown, Saturn dealerships in Bordentown and Toms River,

motorcycle and auto parts stores in Bordentown, and they are building

Saturn and Mitsubishi dealerships in Lawrence.

Maguire is a member of the Committee of 200 in New York City, a group

of the Manhattan’s area’s most powerful women. Bird is a founding

member of this group, and she is also founder and "chief

futurist"

at Women.Future.

"In addition to being a great learning opportunity," says

Kate Butler, who is scheduled to be a facilitator at the Bordentown

site, "the day provides a great networking opportunity for

professional

women." Butler has a Trenton-based human resources consulting

company, American Humanagement Association.

Among the other global panelists are actress and producer Drew

Barrymore; Merle Okawara, CEO of eBay Japan; Marjorie

Scardino, owner of the Financial Times; Kathleen Sullivan,

dean of Stanford Law School; Laura Ziskin, CEO of Fox 2000;

Ellen Hancock, CEO of Exodus Communications; J.C. Herz,

author of "Joystick Nation: How Videogames Ate Our Quarters, Won

Our Hearts, and Rewired Our Minds;" Wendy Kapp, founder

and president of Teach for America; Betsy Holden, CEO of Kraft

Foods; and Myra Hart, professor at Harvard Business School and

founding officer of Staples.

The PBS Adult Learning Service and Fortune magazine are involved

in this networking extravaganza, as is the National Association of

Women Business Owners and Catalyst. The group’s web page

(www.womenfuture.com)

offers reams of networking contacts, with pages for everyone from

the Amazing Women of St. Louis to the Work & Family Connection.


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