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Three companies open new workplaces in downtown Wilkes-Barre | Enterprise



WILKES-BARRE — Office house is beginning to make a comeback in downtown with three companies opening in The Accelerator constructing on South River Street.

New Food Solutions and The Northeast Wine Company every acquired $15,000 and MCR Productions acquired $35,000 from the Spark Wilkes-Barre grant program that can assist the enterprise house owners pay for hire and/or parking prices at their new location, stated Matthew Bickert, chief monetary and vp of finance for the Greater Wyoming Valley Chamber of Commerce.

Wilkes-Barre Mayor George Brown, who joined chamber officers at a grand opening occasion on Thursday, stated a complete of $1 million in grants is being made accessible by way of the Spark Wilkes-Barre grant program which is meant to facilitate enterprise development inside the metropolis.

“This is what the program is all about,” Brown stated, after welcoming the three enterprise house owners to The Accelerator constructing. “We put this together to stimulate growth of businesses not just downtown, but anywhere in the City of Wilkes-Barre.”

One of the brand new entrepreneurs in The Accelerator constructing is Spencer Chesman, an early pioneer of the digital revolution who beforehand was the CEO of on-line specialty meals firm iGourmet.com. He began a brand new firm known as New Food Solutions that helps firms promote on kroger.com.

“I really wanted to stay in the food industry but do something a little bit different,” Chesman stated.

Chesman shares house with Amy Frenchko, nationwide gross sales director and companion of The Northeast Wine Company, an area distributor and wholesaler which imports European wines from Spain, Portugal, Italy and France. The firm sells wine by way of Pennsylvania’s Fine Wine & Good Spirits shops.

“Our philosophy is to give people in Pennsylvania and the U.S. the opportunity to experience boutique vineyards and specialty wines,” Frenchko stated. “Our team has more than 20 years of combined experience in the wine and food industry and we are here to bring amazing wines to our community.”

Frenchko stated she likes the chance to be in an setting that enables her to attach with different entrepreneurs.

John Phillips, proprietor of MCR Productions, stated the grant allowed his enterprise to broaden its operations and talk in a greater setting that enables for collective pondering in a bigger workplace house and the power to have discussions in a boardroom.

MCR Productions, which focuses on leases, design, wedding ceremony and occasion coordination, has 16 workers. The enterprise has a warehouse in Kingston and is transferring its administration workers to Wilkes-Barre, Phillips stated.

Phillips additionally is among the house owners of Parlor Beverages, which options root beer, butterscotch root beer and birch beer. He stated transferring to the Accelerator Building with assist from the Spark Program has “opened up our network to other area businesses and allowed for growth of the company.”

About $130,000 was awarded to this point in Spark grants to not less than 10 companies in Wilkes-Barre, Bickert stated.

Larry Newman, govt director of the Diamond City Partnership, stated the truth that the three enterprise house owners are opening workplace house in downtown Wilkes-Barre exhibits that “the discussion of the death of the office building is probably premature.”

“It is going to change,” Newman stated. “Here, you have examples of three different startup companies that all have chosen to be in this kind of creative office environment.”

As of February, Newman stated complete employment downtown was 47% of what it was in February 2020 earlier than companies have been shut down in March 2020 throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Obviously we have a long way to go but the numbers are going up,” he stated.



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