(WisBusiness) TUES News Summary — 25 Nov. 2008

From WisBusiness.com …

— Cellular Dynamics International Inc., founded in part by stem cell pioneer Dr. James Thomson, has announced a merger with fellow Madison-based stem cell companies Stem Cell Products Inc. and iPS Cells Inc. The new company, which will continue as Cellular Dynamics International, will operate with an additional $18 million from two venture capital firms and the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation.

“Even in this most difficult time… we have to continue to stay focused and be willing to make investments in the areas that, in fact, will move this state forward in years and decades to come,” Gov. Jim Doyle said at a press conference announcing the merger.

*Watch the press conference:

*See the CDI press release:

— State exports in the first three quarters of 2008 were up 13.1 percent compared to the same period a year before, according to a release from the governor’s office.

Wisconsin ranked as the 18th-largest exporting state in the country for the period, up from 21st in 2006. Industrial machinery, including computer equipment, continued to be the state’s top export, up 14.7 percent to $5.3 billion.

Canada continued to be the state’s top international market with $5.1 billion in exports.

See the release:

— Seventeen Wisconsin agricultural producers have been selected by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to receive more than $3.1 million in USDA Rural Development assistance under the Value-Added Producer Grant program. For the second year in a row Wisconsin has led the nation in both number of grants awarded and dollars received.

— Steel reinforcement bar has been the backbone of the concrete construction industry since the first skyscraper towered over Manhattan. Unfortunately, it is a backbone that also has a bad side effect: Steel rebar corrodes. This leads to the deterioration of concrete structures used every day, such as bridges and building foundations.

The people working at Composite Rebar Technology in Madison have found a new way to eliminate corrosion while at the same time strengthening the rebar. The result, they say, will be concrete structures that will last much longer.

Read more about Composite Rebar Technology:



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Press Releases
· DDN: Executive earns prestigious certification
· Gov. Doyle: Wisconsin exports increase by 13 percent from 2007
· Manpower Inc.: Announces historic partnership with Vietnamese government to research labor trends, create jobs and stimulate economic development
· Post of Milwaukee: November still a busy time of the year for shipping
· Quarles & Brady LLP: Names three Milwaukee attorneys as partners
· Quarles & Brady LLP: Names two Madison attorneys as partners
· RadioMilwaukee: Launches search for new GM
· The Employer Group: Receives small business award
· UW-Stevens Point: SBDC offers training seminar for business start-ups

For these and more releases visit http://www.wisbusiness.com/index.iml?Content=82


State exports rise in third quarter: Wisconsin exports for the first three quarters of 2008 increased by 13.1 percent over 2007 third-quarter totals to a record $15.6 billion, Gov. Jim Doyle announced Monday. For the first three quarters, Wisconsin ranks as the 18th-largest exporting state, compared with its ranking of 21st in 2006.

Cellular Dynamics receives $18M in funds: The economy might be mired in a prolonged downturn, but that hasn’t kept one local biotech company from raising some much-needed funds. Cellular Dynamics International — which is housed at University Research Park and is co-founded by stem cell pioneer Jamie Thomson and three other University of Wisconsin-Madison scientists — announced Monday it received $18 million in a financing round led by Tactics II Stem Cell Ventures.

Spectrum gets second stock delisting notice: Struggling Spectrum Brands announced that it has received a second stock delisting notice from the New York Stock exchange. Spectrum, which has its Rayovac and Remington units based in Madison, earlier this month got a notice from NYSE that stated that Spectrum was “below criteria” for the NYSE’s continued listing standards because both its average total market capitalization was less than $75 million over a 30 trading-day period and, at the same time, its stockholders’ equity was less than $75 million.

Economic downturn hurts Harley-Davidson : Brand loyalty runs deep, but it can’t overcome economic realities as Harley-Davidson Inc. motorcycle sales have plummeted in one of the toughest times in decades. On Monday, several Harley analysts said the company’s U.S. motorcycle sales were down 15% to 25% in October and November from a year earlier. Showroom traffic at some Harley dealerships has slowed to a crawl as unemployment and recession fears have kept even the most loyal motorcycle enthusiasts from getting new bikes. One Harley dealership said motorcycle sales are down 35% from a year ago.

Snow thrower engine supplier leaves Ariens in the cold: Ariens was looking forward to a strong finish in 2008, until an engine supplier, which he did not identify, informed him that it was closing a plant. “They told us that they would be closing their plant on Dec. 15 but we will continue to take deliveries until then,” Ariens said. This means Ariens likely will run out of snow throwers to sell sooner than he had hoped.


GREGG HOFFMANN: Contributor, WisBusiness.com

TOM STILL: President, Wisconsin Technology Council

JENNIFER SERENO: Senior manager, Wood Communications Group

STEVE JAGLER: Executive editor, Small Business Times

TOM BURZINSKI: IT executive and consultant

ECONOMY (back to top)
– Shopping rush starts early as shoppers search for best deal

MANUFACTURING (back to top)
– Trek unveils new generation of bikes

– Executive of ambulance firm Curtis Universal sued by siblings

LABOR (back to top)
– Manpower to develop job services in Vietnam

SMALL BUSINESS (back to top)
– Brown County entrepreneurs score Wisconsin grants

INVESTING (back to top)
– What goes down must come up

REAL ESTATE (back to top)
– Existing home sales fall 3.1%

– Area home sales plunge 8.2%

– Ruvin Development accused of defaulting on some loans

– Downtown office building sells for $11 million

– Construction contracts fall 27% in October

– Residential home construction down 45% from year ago

AGRIBUSINESS (back to top)
– Turkey producers see costs gobble up profit

– Dairy Situation & Outlook Report Foresees Lower Milk Prices Ahead

TRANSPORTATION (back to top)
– Marshfield’s Roehl Transport sweeps awards

RETAIL (back to top)
– Mark Motors Chrysler Dodge store closing ‘a great possibility,’ owner says

– Big snow last season sparks preseason snow thrower sales

TOURISM (back to top)
– Travel deals sprouting as airlines, hotels face hard times

– State Fair Park Board hears Milwaukee Mile plan, makes no decision

– Midwest Airlines again tops Zagat quality survey

– National Guard Association to hold convention in Milwaukee

HEALTH CARE (back to top)
– Downturn spreads to health care

– When workers lose weight, companies gain cost savings

– Fox Communities CU opens in Black Creek

MANAGEMENT (back to top)
– Thrivent names new COO

– Barth, Teerlink to retire from Johnson Controls board

– Sankey takes on the Packers

Media Partners
Small Business Times
Madison Magazine

National Business Roundups ( back to top)
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–ABC BUSINESS NEWS: http://abcnews.go.com/sections/business/
–GOOGLE NEWS: http://news.google.com/news/en/us/business.html

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