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POSTED: Monday, April 25, 2011, 2:00 AM
Filed Under: Small Business | Technology

It seems only natural to hold the first Philly Tech Week during the ongoing Philadelphia Science Festival.

Technology and science seem like inseparable twins, after all. But let me disabuse you from thinking that organizers of Philly Tech Week, which starts Monday morning, were inspired by the two-week-long science celebration.

No, the three founders of the two-year-old Technically Philly tech-news blog were thinking about beer - more specifically, Philly Beer Week, which has helped draw attention to the region’s suds scene in its three years.

POSTED: Friday, April 22, 2011, 3:00 PM
Filed Under: Manufacturing

No sooner had Styron L.L.C. moved into its new corporate headquarters in Berwyn than it announced a name change is in the offing.

Styron, the plastics and chemicals business with about $5 billion in 2010 revenue that Dow Chemical Co. sold for $1.6 billion in June, has picked Trinseo as the name it will adopt this year in the 30 countries where it operates.

To me, the name Styron seemed like a good fit because the company’s products, which are used in making home appliances, autos, carpets, consumer electronics, and more, were largely tied to (chemistry alert!) polystyrene and the styrene monomer.

POSTED: Thursday, April 21, 2011, 1:21 PM

Montgomery County remained among the nation's leaders in terms of per-capita personal income for 2009, according to data released by the federal Bureau of Economic Analysis Thursday.

The suburban Philadelphia county had per-capita income of $63,469, ranking 16th among large U.S. counties and first among Pennsylvania's 67 counties.

Chester County's per-capita income of $57,033 was enough to place it 28th nationally, while Bucks County at $50,898 and Delaware County at $49,324 were 57th and and 70th respectively. Burlington County, with $46,516 in per-capita income, was the highest-ranking of South Jersey's counties at No. 95 nationwide.

POSTED: Wednesday, April 20, 2011, 11:43 AM

April showers seem to be bringing lots of opinions about the state of Philadelphia.

Mayor Nutter presented his “State of the City” address to a business audience at the Union League of Philadelphia last week. A few days before, the Pew Charitable Trust’s Philadelphia Research Initiative released its sobering report on how the city is performing, or more precisely underperforming, vs. other cities.

On Tuesday, it was the Center City District’s turn to spin the numbers with its annual glossy publication that certainly sells its subject well.

POSTED: Tuesday, April 19, 2011, 11:32 AM

Credit-rating agencies present themselves as vigilant watchdogs, but often are perceived as Chicken Little.

That characterization is unfair to our fowl friend, who at least issued his warnings before the sky fell. Whether it was the collapse of Enron Corp., the mortgage-market meltdown, or the failure of Lehman Bros. Holdings Inc., the major rating agencies did not downgrade until it was far too late to help investors.

On Monday, in what some were calling a surprise, Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services changed its outlook on the sovereign credit ratings of the United States to “negative” from “stable.”

POSTED: Monday, April 18, 2011, 11:16 AM

Mirroring the frustratingly slow recovery in the broader economy, the venture capital sector cheered improved, if somewhat simmering, activity in the first quarter.

Nationally, about $5.9 billion was invested in 736 deals in 2011’s first three months, according to the PricewaterhouseCoopers/National Venture Capital Association MoneyTree Report, released Friday.

In the fourth quarter, venture capital firms poured $5.6 billion into 827 deals.

POSTED: Friday, April 15, 2011, 9:14 AM

Unisys Corp. has a minor fight on its hands over its executive compensation practices.

Like all companies including a “say-on-pay” advisory vote this year, Unisys is asking its shareholders to approve of the way it pays senior executives.

However, one influential proxy advisory firm that’s analyzed the Blue Bell information technology company’s financial performance and total return concludes that shareholders should cast dissenting votes.

POSTED: Thursday, April 14, 2011, 1:16 PM

A University of Illinois at Chicago survey finds Philadelphia among the 12 best cities at providing investors with financial information online.

It may seem odd to think of cities needing to provide investor relations services in addition to picking up the trash, putting out fires and arresting criminals.

But then, the U.S. municipal bond market is estimated to be $3 trillion. So you'd hope the issuers of all that debt would be diligent in keeping the buyers of that paper informed.

About this blog
Mike Armstrong blogs about Philadelphia corporations and business-related topics. Contact him at 215-854-2980. Reach Mike at marmstrong@phillynews.com.

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