It’s been an exciting year of change and development for Allentown Economic Development Corporation in 2017. A new staff member joined the team and new leadership is guiding our Board of Directors. A startup joined our Bridgeworks Enterprise Center as a new client in our business incubation program, while an existing company graduated from it, transitioning to become an anchor tenant. Read highlights of these items and others below:
It also became the second anchor tenant in the Bridgeworks Enterprise Center. ColdEdge was accepted into the business incubation program in July 2008 and has moved three times since launching in the Bridgeworks Enterprise Center in order to accommodate growth. It recently moved into a 6,200 square foot unit that gives the customized cryogenics system design and manufacturing company the space to grow over the next several years.
Dunn joined the organization as Program Manager, Economic Development Programs. He is the lead on Allentown’s Enterprise Zone program, which consists of three parts: a business outreach program, a revolving loan fund, and an incentive program that provides tax credits to private companies investing in rehabilitating, expanding or improving buildings or land within the Zone. He’s also in charge of the Pennsylvania Minority Business Development Authority loan fund. These loan programs encourage business growth throughout the city by providing capital to invest in and develop properties, purchase equipment, and in some cases, provide working capital.
We also welcomed Devon Gyecsek to the AEDC staff as a Maintenance Technician.
In 2016, the 10 Bridgeworks client companies earned over $4.7 million in revenue. This is a nearly 15 percent increase over 2015 and a 150 percent increase over revenues that the companies earned in 2012. The results from the 2016 survey are the best that AEDC has seen since it started gathering this data in 2012.
The company was launched in 2013 by Andrew Schevets and focuses on providing a full range of engineering, manufacturing, and prototyping services to the fluid dynamics industry, along with other key related industries. Amorphic Tech provides a comprehensive technical solution, from ideation and CAD design through to producing functional electro-mechanical systems.
AEDC received $250,000 from the BB&T Economic Growth Fund that will allow for the completion of critical engineering design work for the former Allentown Metal Works’ first building.
The Board of Directors of AEDC elected Don Bernhard as its new Chairperson. Vincent Tallarico of Lehigh Valley Health Network was appointed as Vice Chairperson, Matthew Green of PPL Corporation was appointed as Treasurer, and John Englesson of Integrity SBS was appointed as Secretary.
During the week of October 25, the Pennsylvania Economic Development Association held its Fall Conference in Allentown. Several staff members participated in conference sessions, and Executive Director Scott Unger was a member of the planning committee.
It included tours of several key sites across Allentown, and featured a walk-through of the manufacturing business incubator at the Bridgeworks Enterprise Center. Attendees got a firsthand look at how AEDC is supporting entrepreneurs in the manufacturing sector through its programming. They also received a quick view of the former Allentown Metal Works property highlighting AEDC’s efforts to remediate industrial brownfield sites across the city.