Oct. 21--Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Northeastern Pennsylvania has approved $622,000 in loans and grants for more than a dozen companies and manufacturers, the organization announced Wednesday.
A number of the recipients, including three awarded loans, are based in the Lehigh Valley.
-- Colymer Industries of Bethlehem, which makes non-asphalt roofing products, was awarded $35,000. Colymer's roofing materials are non-water-soluble and expected to outlast traditional asphalt-based roofs by a factor of four.
-- Pivitec of Bethlehem, a developer of audio streaming and distribution products, was received $75,000. Pivitec uses wireless mobile devices as interactive controllers during live audio productions in theaters and churches.
-- TSG Software of Bethlehem received $100,000. TSG makes software for business cleaning services and property managers.
Ben Franklin Technology Partners is a state-funded program that provides assistance primarily to startups. It announces six to eight rounds of funding each year.
The organization, based at Lehigh University in Bethlehem, provides operating funds for a network of business incubators that nurture fledgling companies by providing low-cost office and laboratory space and other assistance.
It also supports technology development at mature companies. Three area companies received matching grants through the latest round of funding:
-- Applied Separations of Allentown was awarded $50,000. It will collaborate with Philadelphia University to develop a new process for the waterless dyeing of textiles for clothing manufacturers and other textile companies.
-- EchoTech Marine of Allentown received $25,000. It will work with Lehigh University's Enterprise Systems Center to implement a new resource planning system that will accommodate expansion while maintaining quality. EcoTech's patented VorTech propeller pump is located outside of hobby reef aquariums, providing better heat control and flow.
-- Georg Fischer Harvel of Easton was awarded a $50,000. It too will work with the Enterprise Systems Center, to reduce energy consumption by more than 20 percent. GFH specializes in thermoplastic extrusion, primarily manufacturing PVC piping. Energy costs are a top manufacturing expense, so a cost savings in this area will yield a significant competitive advantage.
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