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Company Notebook

International Container Co. Plans Holyoke Facility Expansion

HOLYOKE — In an effort to accommodate a growth in production, International Container Co., LLC will build an expansion to its facility and operations headquartered at 110 North Bridge St. in Holyoke. The expansion is planned with the assistance of both local tax incentives and tax credits provided through the Commonwealth’s Economic Development Incentive Program (EDIP).
International Container Co. (ICC) purchased its 150,000-square-foot facility in Holyoke in 2001 and has since made many improvements to the property. Since moving to Holyoke, business has increased each year for the company. The tax-increment financing (TIF) agreement lasts for five years and allows for a property-tax exemption on the newly created real-estate value. In return, ICC has agreed to create a minimum of five new jobs and invest between $900,000 and $1 million in the project.
The agreement has been submitted to the Holyoke City Council for approval. In addition, ICC will receive state investment-tax credits, pending review and approval of the application by the Mass. Economic Assistance Coordinating Council, based on the amount of sales generated from the expansion.
“The expansion of International Container is another indicator that manufacturing is alive and well in Holyoke,” Mayor Alex Morse said. “Our city’s manufacturers are a vital part of the community and our economy. This local incentive will ensure that this project can be brought to completion to retain and create dozens of employment opportunities in our own backyard.”
Over the last two years, ICC has made substantial efforts to expand, now servicing all of New England and selling products across the U.S. ICC currently employs 45 people, noting a growth in employment since 2013 when there were 24 employees at the facility.
“We are very excited to be working with the city of Holyoke on our expansion project,” said Joseph Searles, general manager of International Container.

Curry Printing Changes Logo to Reflect Shift in Business

WEST SPRINGFIELD — Curry Printing in West Springfield is changing its logo to better reflect its core business.
Since opening in 1976 as Curry Copy Center, the printing business has experienced a paradigm shift. “Ninety-eight percent of what we do today is print, and not copy,” owner Stephen Lang said. “In the old days, customers would come in with their camera-ready originals. We would make a plate and then run off copies. Today, those originals are electronic files sent directly as e-mail attachments or uploaded on our website. No plates need to be made; we print direct to different devices depending on the job. Blueprints, full-color brochures, reports, manuals, newsletters, banners, signs, and all kinds of collateral material go direct to print.”
To reflect this change, Curry has updated its logo. “It’s still OK to call us Curry Copy if you want; we really don’t mind,” Lang said. “But we are so much more than copies these days.”

Country Bank Contributes $7,250 to Local Schools

WARE — Country Bank surprised 29 local schools that participate in the bank’s Savings Makes Sense School Banking Program with $250 gift cards to Staples. Each school received the donation to help cover the cost of back-to-school supplies. “We know how difficult it is for the schools to have the supplies they need when budgets become tight. They are truly so grateful and appreciative of this gift,” said Jodie Gerulaitis, Financial Education officer at Country Bank, adding that teachers typically spend about $250 of their own money annually to purchase items for their classrooms. Country Bank serves Central, Western, and Eastern Massachusetts with 15 offices in Ware, Palmer, Brimfield, Belchertown, Ludlow, Wilbraham, Paxton, Charlton, Leicester, West Brookfield, and Worcester. It sponsors the Savings Makes Sense program and the award-winning Credit for Life program in its communities. For more information, visit www.countrybank.com.

A Plus HVAC Recognized

WESTFIELD — A Plus HVAC of Westfield is one of nine New England-based contractors to receive a 2015 COOL SMART award. The firm, led by owner and President Nathan LeMay, has received this honor for three consecutive years. The honors were presented recently at the annual golf tournament of the Air Conditioning Assoc. of New England. Sponsored by the Massachusetts/Rhode Island COOL SMART program, the awards are given out during the sporting event held in Stow. The winning contractors specialize in heating, ventilation, and air conditioning and are recognized for quality installation of energy-saving equipment and their overall contributions to the program. COOL SMART is a high-efficiency heating and cooling rebate program for residential customers of National Grid, Eversource, Unitil, and the Cape Light Compact. These program administrators sponsor the awards and the tournament to recognize contractors in Massachusetts and Rhode Island for outstanding service and an ongoing commitment to energy efficiency. Launched in 2004, COOL SMART promotes the purchase and installation of Energy Star-qualified and high-efficiency air conditioners, heat pumps, and water heaters. Awards are distributed annually to recognize outstanding contractors for leadership, quality work, and active program participation. “For the past decade, we have witnessed more and more contractors participating in COOL SMART,” said Kevin Parse, Unitil program coordinator. “This program is important to public health because greenhouse-gas emissions and pollution are reduced by up to 30% as a result of their outstanding work. On behalf of Eversource, we are proud to be affiliated with the program and its committed contractors throughout the region. We applaud A Plus HVAC for its third consecutive win and hope to see even more participants next year.” To learn more about becoming a COOL SMART contractor, or for general program information, visit www.masssave.com or call (800) 473-1105.

Webber and Grinnell Unveils New Look

NORTHAMPTON — Webber and Grinnell recently unveiled a new look and logo. “We felt it was time to contemporize things at the agency,” said President Bill Grinnell. “We wanted a logo that reflects our progressive culture and makes a statement to current and future clients.” Webber and Grinnell has been serving personal and business insurance clients throughout the Pioneer Valley for more than 100 years. For more information about its services, visit www.webberandgrinnell.com.

Aaron Smith, P.C. Supports United Way Day of Caring

EAST LONGMEADOW — Aaron Smith, P.C., a certified public accounting firm serving individuals and businesses in the Pioneer Valley, supplied 10 volunteers for the United Way of Pioneer Valley Day of Caring last month. The Day of Caring is the largest day of service in the Pioneer Valley, bringing more than 1,000 people together to complete community-service work throughout the region. Aaron Smith employees participated in the Day of Caring by working with a local YMCA to close up a summer camp for the season. Camp Weber, part of the West Springfield YMCA, has been serving young people for more than 150 years. Generations have enjoyed the 75 acres of wooded property located on Dewey Street, which needs a thorough cleaning at the beginning and end of each season. “It was a pleasure working with Camp Weber as part of the United Way Day of Service,” said Joanna Smigiel of Aaron Smith. “We helped by sweeping out the various buildings at the camp and cleaning refrigerators, sinks, cabinets, and washrooms. We also moved picnic tables inside for the winter, moved various supplies into an indoor storage unit, and generally cleaned up the grounds.” The Day of Caring was established to promote the spirit of volunteerism, increase awareness of local human-service organizations, and demonstrate how people working together for the common good can accomplish great things. “It’s such a rewarding experience to help an organization that brings joy, education, and life skills to our area youth,” said Scott Betsher, certified public accountant and director at Aaron Smith. “We pride ourselves on our relationship with the United Way of Pioneer Valley, knowing that what we do together really makes a difference in the communities we serve. We are not afraid to roll up our sleeves to get the job done. This is how we approach our volunteer work and how we work on your business.”

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