Applications for TEDCO’s Life Science Investment Fund Now Being Accepted

The Life Science Investment Fund (LSIF), which was previously managed by the former Department of Business and Economic Development (then under the name Biotechnology Commercialization Award), was one of the programs that was transferred to TEDCO on Oct. 1, 2015, along with Maryland Venture Fund.

Following the enactment of legislation passed during the 2015 General Assembly, this legislation was initiated by the Augustine Commission in an attempt to consolidate the state’s efforts to provide seed/early-stage business investment. Under TEDCO’s management, the LSIF has been redesigned to specifically meet the needs of Maryland companies that are developing products that address human health concerns and require approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for commercialization.

TEDCO will make investments of up to $200,000 for a period of one year to support milestone-based projects that advance a medical product toward commercialization. TEDCO plans to make five to six investments per year (or two to three in each of two review cycles). Deadlines for applications for the 2016 program are 5 p.m. on Friday, April 15, and Friday, Oct. 14. For more information about TEDCO’s Life Science Investment Fund, contact Program Manager Arti Santhanam at 410-740-9442 and info@tedco.md.

Kittleman Hosts Roundtable at MCE, Announces ICBN Connection

Howard County Executive Allan Kittleman recently hosted a roundtable with three-dozen entrepreneurs, investors and the leadership of the Howard County Economic Development Authority (HCEDA) to discuss how the county can continue to support the growth of startups housed at the Maryland Center for Entrepreneurship (MCE).

Kittleman used the forum to announce that MCE is now connected to the Inter-County Broadband Network (ICBN). “This fiber connection ensures that residents of MCE will have access to virtually unlimited bandwidth,” said Kittleman. “We are providing this connection free of charge, and that sets MCE apart from other government-run incubators. We are giving them a tool that is essential for innovation, collaboration, growth and success.”

The roundtable, which is part of the county’s recognition of National Entrepreneurship Week, featured presentations by leaders of four Howard County technology companies:

  • Paul Capriolo, Social Growth Technologies
  • Kyle Hansloven, Huntress Labs
  • Chuck Bubeck, Ease Technologies
  • Thomas Lah, Gamers Online

“Entrepreneurship and small businesses are the foundation of our local economy. Eighty-five percent of the businesses that call Howard County home have fewer than 25 employees. They are responsible for the vast majority of economic growth,” said Larry Twele, CEO of the HCEDA.

Osiris Therapeutics Receives NASDAQ Deficiency Letter

Columbia-based Osiris Therapeutics, a cellular and regenerative medicine company focused on developing and marketing products to treat conditions in wound care, orthopaedics and sports medicine, has received a letter from the NASDAQ Stock Market notifying the company that it is not in compliance with NASDAQ Listing Rule 5250(c)(1) because its annual report on form 10-K for the year ended Dec. 31, 2015, was not filed on a timely basis with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

As previously disclosed, the company is currently in the process of completing its accounting review of revenue recognition under contracts with distributors that was previously reported in its audited annual financial statements for the year ended Dec. 31, 2014, and its unaudited interim financial statements for quarterly periods in 2015, completing amendments to certain periodic reports previously filed with the SEC and transitioning to a new, independent registered public accounting firm that will require additional time to conduct an audit of the company’s 2015 financial statements. The company intends to file its Form 10-K as soon as practicable.

The NASDAQ letter, dated March 17, 2016, requires the company to submit a plan within 60 days to regain compliance with NASDAQ’s filing requirements for continued listing. The company intends to submit the plan of compliance as soon as practicable.

U.S. News Names Loyola’s Sellinger School Among Nation’s Best in Three Grad Majors

Loyola University Maryland’s Sellinger School of Business and Management was included among the nation’s best business schools for graduate specialties in accounting, finance and information systems in the “2017 Best Graduate Schools” rankings from U.S. News & World Report.

The specialty rankings are based on ratings by business school deans and directors of accredited MBA programs at the 470 schools U.S. News surveyed. The national specialty rankings for the Sellinger School are as follows:

  • Accounting, No. 24
  • Finance, No. 21
  • Information Systems, No. 18

U.S. News also ranked Sellinger’s part-time MBA program in the top 20% of all graduate business schools included in the 2017 rankings. More information about the “2017 Best Graduate Schools” is available at www.usnews.com.

GP Strategies Acquires Jencal Training, B2B Engage

Global performance improvement solutions provider GP Strategies Corp., of Columbia, has announced that its wholly-owned subsidiary, GP Strategies Training Limited, has acquired the entire share capital of Jencal Training Limited (Jencal), and its subsidiary, B2B Engage Limited (B2B), an independent provider of vocational skills training in the United Kingdom.

B2B is a national independent learning provider with a particular focus on London and the south east of England, with offices in Greenwich and Berkshire. Established in 2006, B2B is a Grade 2 ‘Good’ provider of training as determined by the Office for Standards in Education (Ofsted), the U.K. regulator of government-funded training providers. B2B provides apprenticeships, traineeships and short learning programs for unemployed adult learners; Jencal operates as a Skills Funding Agency approved Apprenticeship Training Agency that provides a mechanism for employing apprentices, a program developed to make it easier for businesses to take on an apprentice without employing the person directly.

“This acquisition further expands our capabilities in England, helping people and businesses to access the skills training they need to succeed,” GP Strategies CEO Scott Greenberg. “The acquisition also increases GP Strategies’ 2015–16 maximum U.K. government-funded contract values to $28 million per year and further strengthens [the company’s] position as a major provider of skills training in the U.K.”

Revere, BlueRidge Banks Complete Merger

Revere Bank has announced the completion of its previously announced merger with BlueRidge Bank. The merger was concluded following receipt of shareholder approval from both institutions and all required regulatory approvals. Immediately following the closing of the merger, BlueRidge merged into Revere.

The merger, which was first announced on Oct. 19, 2015, adds BlueRidge’s Frederick and Baltimore branches to Revere’s five current Maryland locations. Based on financial information as of Dec. 31, 2015, on a pro forma basis the combined company has approximately $1.1 billion in assets, which makes Revere the seventh largest bank headquartered and operating in Maryland. Operational close of the merger is scheduled for late June.

“Our priority has always been helping small and medium-sized businesses and their owners grow and become even more successful,” said Ken Cook, Revere Bank co-president and CEO. “This merger enables us to do so for more clients in more communities, and we’re excited about that opportunity.”

Merkle Acquires Comet Global Consulting

Columbia-based Merkle has announced its acquisition of Comet Global Consulting, a global provider of customer relationship management (CRM), marketing and real-time decision management solutions that enable companies to reach customers at moments that most influence their decisions and behaviors.

This is the third and largest European acquisition in less than a year, and the first with an established global footprint. It follows the 2015 acquisition of Periscopix, a London-based performance marketing and programmatic agency; and DBG, a U.K.-based marketing solutions agency. The addition of Comet increases Merkle’s global scale and strengthens its offering in the U.S. and in Europe, bringing enhanced real-time decisioning capabilities and partner alliances.

Aldrin Helps Launch Maryland Live! ‘Trip to Space’ Promotion

Maryland Live! Casino ran a space-based promotion during March that gives patrons the chance to win a balloon-based trip to the edge of space. Legendary NASA Astronaut Buzz Aldrin made a special appearance during the announcement on the evening of March 3 to mingle with patrons during a tour of the casino led by David Cordish, chair of the Cordish Companies and owner of Maryland Live!

“We strive to provide our guests with an out-of-this-world experience every time they visit the casino, [and] this time we are doing it literally,” said Mario Maesano, senior vice president of marketing for the casino. “We like to do things differently here. The ‘Win a Trip to Space’ promotion is the first of its kind in the industry and one that reflects the excitement and spontaneity that our customers have come to expect from Live!”

MSA Set to Study Viability of Pimlico

The Maryland Stadium Authority (MSA) is conducting a $280,000 study of Pimlico Race Course that could determine whether the north Baltimore track will remain the home of the Preakness Stakes. The MSA recently approved a request from the Maryland Racing Commission to manage the effort, which will guide state officials concerning any plans to renovate or rebuild the facility.

The study will address concerns about how appropriate 141-year-old Pimlico is to continue to host the Preakness Stakes, the second leg in the Triple Crown of thoroughbred racing and Maryland’s largest single-day sporting event — as well as fuel more speculation that the race could eventually be moved to Laurel Park.

Arundel Council Set to Forward Fund Crofton High, Cromwell Elementary

The Anne Arundel County Council has approved County Executive Steve Schuh’s legislation to forward fund the new Crofton High School and George Cromwell Elementary Revitalization capital projects.

The legislation increases the funding in the fiscal 2016 budget for the new Crofton High School capital project by $500,000, and George Cromwell Elementary School by $250,000. The increased investment will allow the current contractors to continue with their survey and planning work, speeding up the timetables for both projects. The county council voted 6-1 in favor of both pieces of legislation.

Illness Forecasting Startup Receives $150K in Funding

The Howard County Economic Development Authority (HCEDA) announced the issuing of a $150,000 loan for the startup Sickweather from its Catalyst Loan Fund through the use of Video Lottery Terminal (VLT) funds. Baltimore-based Sickweather is a data platform for public health prediction and real-time Doppler radar for sickness. It is also the largest illness crowdsourcing community of its kind — processing more than 6 million reports of illness every month.

The HCEDA is one of seven fund managers approved to issue loans from the VLT funds. Of the $1.75 million the HCEDA has to lend, 50% is required to be distributed within 10 miles of one of Maryland’s casinos, while the rest can be distributed outside of that area. The HCEDA has approved seven loans this fiscal year.

Certis USA Names UAP Canada as Marketing Partner for Biofungicide

Certis USA, of Columbia, has chosen UAP Canada as an exclusive provider of its Double Nickel biofungicide to Canadian growers of fruiting and leafy vegetables, potatoes, grapes, strawberries, tree fruit and other crops. Double Nickel represents a new generation of fungicides and bactericides that have biologically-based active ingredients, are of low risk to the environment and are sustainable crop protection solutions.

UAP is the largest distributor of agricultural inputs in Canada. Its products are made available to Canadian growers through national and regional dealers and an extensive field sales force. Double Nickel is a naturally occurring strain (D747) of the beneficial rhizobacterium Bacillus amyloliquefaciens, which rapidly colonizes roots, leaves and other plant surfaces to prevent establishment of disease-causing fungi and bacteria.

Aerotek Unveils New Brand Positioning, Identity

Hanover-based Aerotek, a provider of recruiting and staffing services, has unveiled a refreshed brand positioning and identity that includes a new logo, tagline, messaging and website, to create a more unified public profile for the company and to more effectively communicate the value it brings to its customers.

As an organization dedicated to building meaningful partnerships with its clients and contract employees, the new tagline, “Our People are Everything,” articulates the priority of the Aerotek brand, as well as its focus of connecting the best talent with the best job opportunities.

greeNewit Cited by U.S. Chamber

Columbia-based greeNEWit has been chosen as one of the Top 100 Small Businesses in America by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. The company is being honored for exemplifying the strong American values of hard work, innovation, persistence and entrepreneurship.

Each year, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with Sam’s Club, recognizes 100 standout small businesses from across the country for their dedication to their communities, contributions to restoring jobs and supporting economic growth. In June, one company will be chosen as the DREAM BIG Small Business of the Year at America’s Small Business Summit, to be held June 13–15, at the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington, D.C.

Osiris Provides Update on a Clinical Review by Blue Cross Blue Shield

Osiris Therapeutics, of Columbia, a cellular and regenerative medicine company focused on developing and marketing products to treat conditions in wound care, orthopaedics and sports medicine, has announced that the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association has provided a positive review on Grafix usage for individuals with diabetic lower-extremity ulcers.

Blue Cross Blue Shield Association reviewed the clinical data on Grafix and stated that there is sufficient evidence to determine that the technology results in a meaningful improvement in the net health outcome. The association, which reviews approximately 500 new medical technologies a year, provides the 36 Blue Cross plans nationwide with documentation that they often rely on to make coverage decisions.

DocPoint Adds Concept Searching to GSA Schedule 70

Fulton-based DocPoint Solutions has added Concept Searching’s products and services to its General Services Administration (GSA) Schedule 70. Now, federal agencies and government organizations can more easily deploy an end-to-end SharePoint solution that provides auto-classification and taxonomy management capabilities allowing them to turn information into actionable knowledge.

Concept Searching is the only company whose solutions deliver automatic semantic metadata generation, auto-classification and powerful taxonomy tools running natively in all versions of SharePoint and SharePoint Online.”

Local Vietnam Vets Featured in Doc, Traveling Exhibit

Ellicott City resident Tom Glenn and Woodstock resident Lou Reymann, both Vietnam veterans, are featured in the upcoming television documentary Maryland Vietnam War Stories and in a traveling exhibit visiting venues statewide to set the stage for the Maryland Public Television Tribute to Vietnam Veterans this spring. Both MPT projects are part of a multi-year initiative titled “MPT Salutes Vietnam Veterans.”

Glenn and Reymann are two of roughly 100 men and women who’ve been interviewed for the film that airs in three,one-hour parts on May 24–26. As advance outreach to towns and cities across the state, MPT features 16 of these veterans in the MPT Salutes Vietnam Veterans Traveling Exhibit that is booked through June at municipal centers, libraries and other public sites.

Hogan Supports MedStar’s New Columbia Headquarters

Gov. Larry Hogan has announced that MedStar Health will bring 72 jobs from the company’s other area offices to its new headquarters in Downtown Columbia. The company is moving from its current location at Sterrett Place, in Columbia, to a 97,000-square-foot office space at the Howard Hughes Corp.’s new Crescent property at Little Patuxent and Broken Land parkways.

The new headquarters is currently under construction and scheduled to open later this year. With this move, MedStar will employ 222 full-time employees in Howard County and 1,266 employees statewide.

Pennoni Celebrates 50th Year With Firm-Wide, Virtual Ceremony

In recognition of the firm’s 50th anniversary, Pennoni held a company-wide virtual celebration on March 1 — the day on which the firm was founded. Using an online video conferencing system, each of the firm’s 30-plus offices, including the firm’s locations in Baltimore and Columbia, celebrated the landmark anniversary together and shared their own personal sentiments and stories about the firm.

Hosted in the firm’s headquarters in Philadelphia, Pennoni Founder and Chairman C.R. “Chuck” Pennoni, President and CEO Anthony Bartolomeo and Vice Chairman Thomas Rust addressed the company with remarks on Pennoni’s founding and growth. Pennoni’s Baltimore and Columbia offices are led by Regional Vice President Ronald Moore, Jr. The offices specialize in providing transportation, site/civil design, water resources, water/wasterwater, environmental and dry utility services to clients across Maryland, including the Maryland Department of Transportation, Anne Arundel County, Howard County and Washington Gas Light Co.

Crosby Hits No. 15 on O’Dwyer’s Environmental PR Firm Rankings

Crosby Marketing Communications, of Annapolis, was recently ranked No. 15 on O’Dwyer’s magazine’s list of top Environmental & Public Affairs PR Firms. An industry trade publication, O’Dwyer’s bases its annual rankings on verified financial information submitted by companies.

Crosby partners with clients to raise awareness and spur action on issues relating to the environment, energy, public health, sustainability and responsible development. The firm’s work includes national campaigns for the EPA’s ENERGY STAR program, USDA and the Catholic Coalition on Climate Change.

LRH Wound Care and Hyperbaric Medicine Center Cited

The Laurel Regional Hospital (LRH) Wound Care & Hyperbaric Medicine Center has earned the Center of Distinction Status for 2015 from Healogics, the largest provider of advanced wound care services in the United States. The center is one of just four in Maryland to earn the distinction.

Out of 512 eligible Healogics wound care centers, only 221 achieved this status. The center achieved outstanding clinical outcomes for 12 consecutive months, including patient satisfaction higher than 92%, and a minimum wound healing rate of at least 91% within 30 median days.

AACC Digital Annual Report Earns Top National Award

Anne Arundel Community College (AACC) won a national Gold Paragon award for design of its Electronic College Annual Report in the 2015 National Council for Marketing and Public Relations competition. The annual competition drew 1,773 entries in 53 categories from 236 colleges. The Electronic College Annual Report was a collaboration between the college’s Public Relations and Marketing Creative Services, and Media and Web Services teams.

This was the first electronic annual report the college has created. A digital report allows viewers to see videotaped footage of the campus, students, faculty and staff at AACC while illustrating statistics about the college. Having a digital version of the annual report also saves the college the cost of printing and mailing a paper version and increases distribution to interested parties. To see the digital report, visit www.aacc.edu/newsroom and click on the photo of AACC President Dawn Lindsay in the upper right-hand corner.

Anne Arundel Community College won a national Gold Paragon award for design of its Electronic College Annual Report in the 2015 National Council for Marketing and Public Relations competition. Pictured with the award are, from left, Allison Baumbusch-Ernst, assistant director of creative services; Ben Pierce, graphic designer who is holding the award; Tim McGowan, media and web services specialist; and Daniel Baum, executive director of public relations and marketing.