Business Columns & Blogs

Bits of Business | Diamonds & Lace on the move

A Lemont bridal shop found has found a new home, at 1524 N. Atherton St. in Ferguson Township.

Diamonds & Lace Bridal Boutique Manager Angela Hane said the plan is to officially move to the 4,800-square-foot store Tuesday.

“We really love Lemont, but we grew out of the space,” Hane said.

“Our new space is definitely big enough where we see this as a permanent location.”

Hane said the look of the store will be “girly and feminine,” with more dressing rooms, mirrors and big “show windows” to work with.

“It’s been a long time coming,” Hane said.

Hane said that management has been looking to move for about three years but didn’t find the right space until recently.

There has been no word on the future of the property at 908 Pike St.

New obstacle course events in the works

Michael Olmstead, of State College, is doing something he always wanted to do — creating an obstacle course company with events that can be held around the country.

Olmstead and business partner Matthew Grube have founded Left Right Repeat LLC, which hosts mud run-type events.

The two incorporated the company in March and went live April 18 with a website and Facebook page.

They work out of their homes in State College, Olmstead said.

They plan to organize and host mud-run obstacle courses and other 5K events.

“We both have done many events and just saw this area as a great place to hold them, and figured we could give other events like this competition,” Olmstead said.

The first event will be July 19 at the Clinton County fairgrounds with a 5- to 7-mile course.

Another will be Oct. 12 at Tussey Mountain, but planning is still in the works for that event.

Olmstead said he expects 200 to 500 people to be part of the races, and that he thinks it will grow with more experience.

“It’s just a chance for people to come out and push themselves outside of their comfort zone,” Olmstead said.

Ten percent of all registration fees will go toward The Jared Box Project, Olmstead said.

Local engineering firm recognized

Stahl Sheaffer Engineering was recently named a finalist for the 2014 Governor’s ImPAct Award in the “Jobs First” award category.

Maureen Hauck, of Bucknell University’s Small Business Development Center, nominated the firm, a news release from the engineering company said.

Gov. Tom Corbett recognized Stahl Sheaffer and the other finalists at a luncheon May 30 in Hershey.

Ben Franklin’s portfolio company receives grant

Ben Franklin announced that its portfolio company, Lignolink, received a $750,000 Phase II Small Business Innovation Research Grant from the National Science Foundation.

Lignolink, in Innovation Park, is developing a patented technology for the genetic modification of crops to enhance digestibility for biofuels feedstock and livestock forages.

The company will use the investment to advance its technology, which improves the breakdown of biomass into sugars.

Penn State professors Ming Tien and John Carlson — who also invented the technology for this project — founded Lignolink.

In addition to SBIR funding, the company was supported in its early stages by Ben Franklin Technology Partners through its traditional investment fund program and its “Entrepreneur-in-Residence” support.