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Company Notebook

Sip, Clip & Go! Coffee Launched

SOUTH HADLEY — Karen Lynn, a South Hadley resident, recently announced the launch of  Sip, Clip & Go! Coffee,  a niche brand of coffee geared specifically for the cycling community. The coffee is 100% fair-trade and organic. Additionally, Lynn pledges that 1% of all coffee profits will be donated to Bikes Belong, a nonprofit organization that helps build bicycle-friendly communities. “I created Sip, Clip & Go! Coffee to cater specifically to the cycling community” said Lynn, an avid cyclist for 12 years and long-time coffee lover. “There is an intrinsic cultural link between coffee and cycling. I think part of it is that coffee and cycling accomplish the same thing — they inspire conversation, collaboration, and connection.  I’ve always enjoyed the sense of shared community that cycling has brought into my life, and Sip Clip & Go! Coffee seeks to pay homage and contribute back to that very community.” Lynn works with local roasters in the Pioneer Valley to create the various blends of Sip Clip and Go! Three blends are currently being offered, all with cycling-centric names: Crank Set, Off the Chain, and Carbon-Free Commuter. Additionally, ceramic mugs and stainless-steel tumblers are available to order on the Web site. Sip Clip & Go! Coffee is available for sale primarily through the Web site. Plans to place the coffee into bicycle shops are Lynn’s next step. “I’ll be reaching out to local bike shops over the coming weeks; after establishing the product locally, I’ll branch out from there.” The coffee retails for $12.99 for a 12 oz. bag of whole-bean or ground coffee, and Lynn plans to utilize social-media outlets like Twitter and Facebook to announce online coupons or promotional discounts. For additional information, or to inquire about carrying Sip, Clip & Go! Coffee in sport and bike shops, e-mail [email protected]

 

Springfield Museums Awarded $150,000 Grant

SPRINGFIELD — The Springfield Museums have been awarded a highly competitive Museums for America grant of $150,000 from the federal Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) toward the creation and installation of “The Amazing World of Dr. Seuss,” an interactive, literacy-based exhibit for children. The 3,200-square-foot, bilingual exhibition is designed to instill a love of reading and introduce children and their families to the stories of Springfield-born author Theodor Seuss Geisel. “The Amazing World of Dr. Seuss” will provide opportunities to explore new vocabulary, play rhyming games, invent stories, and engage in activities that encourage teamwork and creative thinking. Upgrades to a companion Web site, www.catinthehat.org, will provide interactive games for children as well as educational resources for teachers. When fund-raising for the project has been completed, the new exhibit will be installed on the first floor of the Pynchon Building, formerly the Connecticut Valley Historical Museum. The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s 123,000 libraries and 17,500 museums. The grants are awarded through competitive peer review. Out of 470 applicants to the Museums for America program, fewer than one-third were funded. “The projects selected represent a wide spectrum of activities that will help museums serve their communities better through exhibitions and community-outreach programs, collections-management activities, and behind-the-scenes projects,” said IMLS Director Susan Hildreth. The Springfield Museums is a nonprofit organization that includes the George Walter Vincent Smith Art Museum, the Lyman and Merrie Wood Museum of Springfield History, the Springfield Science Museum, the Michele and Donald D’Amour Museum of Fine Arts, the Pynchon Building, and the Dr. Seuss National Memorial Sculpture Garden.

 

Hampden Bank

Reports 130% Increase

in Net Income

SPRINGFIELD — Hampden Bancorp Inc., the holding company for Hampden Bank, recently announced the results of operations for the three and 12 months ended June 30. The company had an $882,000 increase in net income for the three months ended June 30, to $909,000, or $0.16 per fully diluted share, as compared to $27,000, or $0.00 per fully diluted share, for the same period in 2011. The company had a $1.7 million, or 129.5%, increase in net income for the year ended June 30, 2012 to $3.0 million, or $0.51 per fully diluted share, as compared to $1.3 million, or $0.21 per fully diluted share, for the same period in 2011. The company’s total assets increased $42.6 million, or 7.4%, from $573.3 million at June 30, 2011 to $616.0 million at June 30, 2012. Securities increased $31.9 million, or 28.5%, to $143.9 million. Net loans, including loans held for sale, increased $9.2 million, or 2.3%, to $407.3 million at June 30, 2012. Due to interest-rate risk, the company has decided to sell the majority of its current originations of long-term fixed-rate mortgages and has sold $23.2 million of fixed-rate mortgages during the year ended June 30, 2012. Non-performing assets totaled $4.1 million, or 0.67% of total assets, at June 30, 2012 compared to $7.5 million, or 1.30% of total assets, at June 30, 2011. Total non-performing assets included $2.3 million of non-performing loans and $1.8 million of other real estate owned. From June 30, 2011 to June 30, 2012, commercial real-estate non-performing loans decreased $1.5 million, residential mortgage non-performing loans decreased $1.4 million, commercial non-performing loans decreased $769,000, and consumer — including home-equity and manufactured homes — non-performing loans decreased $294,000. Deposits increased $17.6 million, or 4.2%, to $434.8 million at June 30, 2012 from $417.3 million at June 30, 2011. Savings accounts increased $12.3 million, demand deposits increased $8.8 million, money-market accounts increased $7.7 million, and NOW accounts increased $4.5 million. Certificates of deposits decreased $15.7 million. During the year ended June 30, 2012, the company purchased 812,750 shares of company stock for $10.2 million, at an average price of $12.52 per share, pursuant to the company’s previously announced stock repurchase programs.

 

3 Area Companies Named Employers of Choice

EAST LONGMEADOW — Four Massachusetts businesses, including three from Western Mass., have been selected as Employer of Choice Award recipients by the Massachusetts Chamber of Commerce. The winners — People’s Bank of Holyoke, Sanderson-MacLeod Inc. of Palmer, Savage Arms of

Westfield, and Seven Hills Foundation of Worcester — will receive their awards at the chamber’s Business Summit in September at the Resort and Conference Center in Hyannis. Recognition as an Employer of Choice provides statewide visibility for companies that have developed a culture for transforming and rewarding employee performance. The categories of focus are company culture, training and development, communication, job, recognition/rewards, life-work balance, and Employer-of-Choice-related results. Debra Boronski, president of the Massachusetts Chamber of Commerce, said the three-step process ensures that only the best companies are selected. “After an initial application with basic questions relating to Employer of Choice, we select semifinalists and submit additional, more-detailed, questions. We narrow that down to a smaller group and conduct on-site interviews with all the finalists to verify and ultimately select the winners.” Employers who have been in business for at least three years and have a minimum of 25 employees are eligible to participate. The size of a company and its resources are taken into consideration in the screening and selection process. Awards are given in two sectors: Manufacturing and Non-manufacturing/Service. The Massachusetts Chamber of Commerce’s annual Business Summit is a three-day gathering (Sept. 9-11) of business professionals from across the state, as well as state and local elected officials and representatives from the Mass. Office of Economic Development. This year, the summit will feature relevant panel discussions on health care cost containment, how to leverage social media, and an employer’s legal responsibilities. For more information and to register for the summit, contact Boronski at (617) 512-9667 or (413) 426-3850, or visit www.massachusettschamberofcommerce.com.

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