State starts program to guarantee souring biz loans

Governor Tim Kaine has authorized the state to guarantee a total of $3 million in existing small business loans for Virginia businesses. The Virginia Small Business Financing Authority quickly approved a new program to work with banks and guarantee existing loans of up to $500,000 on the condition that banks loosen some of the terms… Read more »

MeadWestvaco heads to India

Richmond packaging giant MeadWestvaco announced today a joint venture with an Indian box manufacturer, Wadco Packaging. MeadWestvaco purchased a 51 percent equity stake in Wadco and plans to improve the Indian company’s ability to package produce in the country.

Intrinergy secures $47 million for Belgian biomass plant

Despite a tough credit climate for alternative energy companies, Richmond-based Intrinergy has secured $47 million in bank financing to build a biomass power plant in Belgium. Intrinergy designs, builds and finances power plants that use biomass (wood chips, forest residue, or yard clippings) instead of fossil fuels to produce the steam that runs industrial plants… Read more »

Green Plate Club

Sugarcane clamshells and corn cutlery? Nope, not lost lyrics from “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds.” They are products from Green Duck Biodegradables, a local distributor for eco-friendly food containers and utensils. Founder Jocelyn Tice opened the business last month with an initial investment of $5,000. Her first big order: providing all the compostable food packaging for… Read more »

The Sight of Music

A Glen Allen engineer has designed a new set of speakers with a built-in spectrum analyzer aimed at computer-gaming males. “My goal was to merge the analyzer display with the fact that may target demographic – males ages 16 to 34 – spend more time on the PC than with TV,” said Link Parikh.

Look mom, no tank

A growing number of Richmonders are installing tankless water heaters to lower energy bills. “Once they started raising the price of electricity it became worth the investment,” said Ross Herring, a plumber who sells and installs the units for Marshall Mechanical. Within the last 8 months the plumbing company has installed 20-25 tankless water heaters,… Read more »

Short Pump grocers ready to fight fresh competition

Consider yourself warned, Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s. Two of Short Pump’s original higher end grocers are ready to fight to retain their upscale shoppers. Tom Leonard, who owns a farmer’s market on Brookriver Drive, behind Best Buy, may not have prime Broad Street frontage, but it doesn’t seem to affect his business. Just across… Read more »

If it ain’t broke, don’t touch it!

In 16 years of working on cars, Ronnie Bowen has never seen it so slow. Or seen so many motorists opt for the bare minimum to keep their cars on the roads. “The economy is so bad, people are not even doing preventative repairs. They’re fixing what has to be fixed so they can still… Read more »

Homebuilding activity plummets

Homebuilding activity has fallen 30% in the Richmond Metro Area compared to last year. According to Inside Business, a business news weekly in Hampton Roads, the slow-down is more pronounced in single-family housing, where permits for new homes fell from 4,490 through August of 2007, to 3,080 for the same period of 2008, or a… Read more »

Haynes Jeep is for sale

Haynes Jeep is for sale. As of 2:00 on Thursday, the dealership’s general manager, Richard Carter, and Owner Stuart Haynes were in meetings with Chrysler, according to a receptionist. One possible buyer might be Whitten Brothers. Check back later for a full story.