October 26, 2011 |
Alphabuyer Inc., a year-old Paoli e-commerce company that enlists customers for "group buying for your bills," probably could have picked something a little sexier to start with than the humble electric bill. But since launching last year with discount offers for Peco Energy Co. electricity customers, the group-buying service has expanded into three other states, including New Jersey, and other commodities, such as natural gas. Cofounder Kevin Johnson imagines that eventually every savvy, penny-pinching customer will go through Alphabuyer to join groups to buy products and services ranging from discounted Internet and cellphone service to gasoline, heating oil, or antivirus-software subscriptions.
November 17, 2010 |
Store owners, job-hunters, investors all want this Christmas shopping season to be busier than last year. Shares of Dick's Sporting Goods jumped 12 percent Tuesday as the Pittsburgh-based national chain posted modestly higher sales in its third-quarter report. Same-store sales at more than 400 Dick's stores rose 5 percent over 2009 levels. Online sales jumped a more-exciting 82 percent, chief financial officer Timothy Kullman told investors. Wall Street connects online sales with low costs and high profits.
November 30, 2010 |
From her headquarters office at online retail operator GSI Commerce Inc. , Fiona Dias can see the paved parking that makes possible the King of Prussia shopping complex. "The mall was packed Black Friday," said Dias, "but I didn't see tons of shopping bags. " The National Retail Federation , in a survey of 4,300 Americans, said the number of people shopping online has grown by a third so far this Christmas-shopping season compared with last year. Actual online sales were up a more modest 9 percent, estimated analyst Marianne R. Wolk , who covers Amazon.
June 14, 2011
In the Region Saul Ewing to merge with Boston firm Saul Ewing L.L.P. , of Center City, said it planned to merge with the Boston real estate and business law firm Dionne & Gass L.L.P. , effective July 1. The merger will bring seven new lawyers to Saul Ewing, five as partners, one as special counsel, and another as an associate, and expand Saul Ewing's East Coast presence with its first office in Boston. The combined law firm will retain the Saul Ewing name and have 235 lawyers.
March 29, 2011 |
I received some interesting reactions from readers to Friday's column about the legacy of two pioneers of the region's biotechnology sector. I'd wondered aloud who might follow in the footsteps of Frank Baldino Jr. , the founder of Cephalon Inc. who died in December, and Hubert J.P. Schoemaker , the founder of Centocor Inc. who died in 2006. Both built large enterprises that continue to employ hundreds locally. In a comment posted online, Pennsylvania Bio president Christopher P. Molineaux listed seven local life-sciences entrepreneurs whom he suggested were walking that same path, including Steven Nichtberger , CEO of East Norriton-based Tengion Inc. , and Maxine Gowen , founder and CEO of King of Prussia-based Trevena Inc. In e-mails, readers in the biotech business mentioned how difficult it is to get from the point of drug discovery to putting actual product in consumers' hands.
November 15, 2012 |
It is a problem so obvious you wonder why it hasn't already been solved: how to deliver online orders in a way that cuts the odds of missing a delivery or having a package stolen after drop-off to an apartment lobby, stoop, or an unsecured porch. One way Americans have worked around this, as their love affair with online shopping has grown in recent years, is to have deliveries sent to the office, which requires discretion and an indulgent boss. Or they suck up the status quo, unglue missed-delivery slips from the front door, and hope that, the next time, the truck comes when someone is home.
June 30, 2011 |
NEW YORK - The nation's biggest companies are spending more money on stock repurchases to keep investors happy. Standard & Poor's Corp. said Wednesday stock buybacks in the first quarter rose by 63 percent to $89.8 billion. That's up from $55.3 billion in the year-ago period. In the Philadelphia area, Airgas Inc., GlaxoSmithKline P.L.C., Innovative Solutions & Support Inc., GSI Commerce Inc., and ViroPharma Inc. were among the companies that announced buybacks in the first quarter.
July 4, 2011 |
Companies may feel like waving a flag this Fourth of July, but after what was a volatile second quarter, it might not be Old Glory. High oil prices, fears of a possible debt default by Greece, and the effects of Japan's triple disaster on the global supply chain all contributed to the gyrations in the stock market and thus the value of public companies. The Inquirer/Bloomberg Philadelphia Index rose 2.81 percent between March 31 and June 30, outperforming the Dow Jones industrial average (up 0.77 percent)
March 16, 2013 |
Old news: Companies have very few women on their boards of directors. Welcome news: Nutrisystem Inc. , of Fort Washington, and Pep Boys - Manny, Moe & Jack , of Philadelphia, both just added a woman to their male- dominated boards. Unusual twist: It's the same woman. Andrea M. Weiss was appointed to Nutrisystem's board on March 4. Eight days later, Pep Boys added Weiss, 57, to its board. For the last decade, Weiss has been president and CEO of an Orlando-based boutique consulting practice called Retail Consulting Inc. Her resumé includes stops at retailers such as Ann Taylor , delia's , Guess , Intimate Brands , and The Limited . So it would seem self-evident why consumer-oriented companies like Nutrisystem (selling meal plans)
July 25, 2012 |
What if solvent Germany stops bailing out Europe and goes back to its own, stronger money? That would make German products cost more. But privately owned German industrial-sensor and controls maker IFM Electronic GmbH won't have that problem. The company dedicated its new factory and labs in Malvern on Monday, and is adding more abroad. "We make eight million sensors a year," said Roger Varma , head of the $700 million (in yearly sales) company's IFM Prover USA Inc.me off the line at IFM's factory in Tettnang, Germany.