Ani DiFranco’s latest CD, Evolve, just won a 2004 Grammy for the Best Recording Package. This innovative package, constructed of FiberMark’s Skivertex® Alloy®, expresses and elevates brand image with a feel and visual depth that invites interaction. This duplex material combines strength and rigidity with the high-impact aesthetics needed to create an award-winning package.This distinctive design comes as no surprise to Ani DiFranco’s loyal fans, who recognize packaging as an important extension of the artist’s vision. The CD was co-art directed by Ani DiFranco and Brian Grunert.“In its look and feel, this material is key in designing a package that expresses the unique qualities of Ani’s music,” said Grunert. “Not only is it eye-catching on the shelf, but it invites people to touch the package, pick it up, examine it, and hopefully take it home with them.”The closed Evolve CD uses an outer slipcase with a crisp, modern look that contrasts with the natural, organic look of the cover image, which is embossed onto the inner package. The slipcase material is a striking metallic blue color with a subtle pattern that appears to change in luster as the package is moved. This specialized look is created by using FiberMark’s Skivertex Alloy embossed with a Brush finish. The artist’s name and the track list are flat-foil stamped directly onto the material and a custom die cut is intricately crafted to outline the striking cover image and the letters of the album name.Final winners of the Grammy Awards were announced on February 8th, 2004. GRAMMY Awards are awarded by the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences, In. Established in 1957, it is an organization of musicians, producers and other recording professionals and is dedicated to improving the quality of life and cultural condition for music and its makers.FiberMark (www.fibermark.com(link is external)) offers inventive packaging materials that express and elevate brands with a feel and visual depth that invites interaction. FiberMark combines colors, finishes, and special techniques to create depth and feel – the results are a limitless array of packaging design possibilities. FiberMark material design specialists work with creative teams to develop packaging that captures a brand’s personality and conveys distinct quality and uniqueness to consumers. Versatility, durability, and sales-driving impact make FiberMark the ultimate medium for packaging and collateral materials. FiberMark (FMK: AMEX) crafts specialty fiber-based materials through its U.S. and European facilities, with attention to the specialized material and service needs of its global customers.
groSolar Acquires Energy Outfitters Energy Outfitters, of Grants Pass, Oregon; Calgary,Alberta and Barrie, Ontario,was owned by Maynard and Ray Ogden, who will remain actively involved with thebusiness. For over 15 years, Energy Outfitters has been dedicated to growingthe renewable energy industry. Venture Makes SolarCompany One of Nation’s Leading Solar Energy Suppliers AboutGROGRO is a national solar integration firmfocused on designing, distributing and installing high quality energy systems.GRO distributes solar electric, solar hot water and air heating systemsthroughout North America from offices in VT, NJ, NY, MA, CO, OR, Alberta andOntario. The company recently changed its name from Global Resource Options toGRO. GRO integrates components from leading solar manufacturers includingEvergreen Solar, Suntech Power, Heliodyne, Outback, SMA, Magnetek, Gridpointand UniRac into elegant solar energy systems for its customers that generateclean, reliable energy for decades. groSolar was also recently recognized asone of the best places to work in Vermont by VermontBusiness Magazine. For information, contact Kevin Ellis 1-800-498-5390 or Sue Lewisat 1-800-374-4494. www.groSolar.com(link is external) “We share the same values, mission andgoals,’’ said Bob Maynard, President of Energy Outfitters.“And the strategic fit is great because groSolar has strength in thenortheast while Energy Outfitters has strong west coast and Canadianoperations. We are very glad that Energy Outfitters is joining the outstandinggroSolar team.’’ White River Junction, VT/Grants Pass, OR –groSolar, a national solar energy firm, announced today that it has acquiredEnergy Outfitters, an Oregon-based solar energy distribution company. Theacquisition makes groSolar one of the largest solar distribution andinstallation firms in the U.S.,with additional offices in western and eastern Canada. “This is a great day for groSolar andeven a better day for those dedicated to mitigating globalwarming,’’ groSolar CEO Jeff Wolfe said. “The combined assetsand expertise of the two companies will enable us to put more solar on moreroofs across the U.S. and Canada.’’ groSolar, based in White River Junction, Vermont, was founded in1998, by Jeff and Dorothy Wolfe as Global Resource Options, and is dedicated tofostering personal and corporate energy independence and helping reverse globalwarming. Wolfe said the cultural fit between the twocompanies is seamless and should enable combined operations to move ahead withoutthe typical integration delays. With five main points of distributionthroughout North America, groSolar is nowpositioned to serve all customers in any market quickly and effectively. Thiswide base of operations makes groSolar the first true North American solar distributor.groSolar distributes solar hot water and solar air heating systems in additionto solar electric systems, providing a wider product base than otherdistributors. According to Wolfe, groSolar will continueto use the Energy Outfitters brand in their existing market areas, slowlytransitioning to the groSolar brand nationally. “Energy Outfitters customerswill see a continuation of the strong service culture, which will grow evenstronger as we incorporate groSolar’s proven value added distributionexpertise,’’ Wolfe said.
Private equity firm North Castle Partners in partnership with CMS Companies announced today that they have invested in Ibex Outdoor Clothing Holdings, Inc, a designer, marketer, manufacturer and distributor of a diverse range of premium branded wool and wool-based technical apparel and accessories. Ibex just announced it was opening its first retail store in Boston. North Castle is a leading private equity firm focused exclusively on investments in consumer-driven product and service businesses that benefit from “Healthy Living and Aging” trends. The terms of the investment were not disclosed.Founded in 1997 and headquartered in White River Junction, VT, Ibex is a designer, marketer, manufacturer and distributor of branded merino wool technical apparel and accessories. The company’s products are inspired by outdoor enthusiasts and cater to a wide range of outdoor pursuits and active lifestyles. Ibex was founded on the strong belief that wool is superior to synthetic materials traditionally used in performance clothing. Wool is a versatile fiber which offers significant performance benefits to the end consumer. Ibex merino wool is sustainably sourced from sheep ‘ a natural, environmentally friendly and renewable resource ‘ in New Zealand and is Zque certified. Products range from ultra-soft baselayer items made of 17.5 micron merino wool to thicker, more insulating outerwear, composed of 24.5 micron merino wool. Ibex offers men’s and women’s active outdoor clothing for all-season activities and sports.”We are proud to partner with the management of this iconic brand and help them more widely distribute their high quality, high performance merino wool products,” said Chip Baird, North Castle’s Managing Partner.”Based on the growing consumer preference toward natural and sustainable fibers, we expect Ibex to grow into a leading technical apparel brand in the outdoor softgoods market driven by the authenticity of its brand and the quality of its products,” added DJ Jenson, North Castle Operating Advisor.”When we went on a search for capital to help us grow the business, we put the people before the cash,” explained John Fernsell, Founder and CEO of Ibex. “We made it very clear to our investment banker that the actual money was third on the list after compatibility and experience. We are happy to partner with North Castle Partners because of their understanding of our industry, the belief in our products and their commitment to values which will allow us to grow the Ibex business without compromise. As we mapped out our mutual growth plan for Ibex, I realized how much the company will benefit from the North Castle network, and I look forward to bringing that depth of experience into our management team.”In 2007, North Castle made its first investment in the outdoor recreation industry when it acquired a controlling interest in Performance, Inc., the largest independent bicycle dealer and direct marketer of bicycles and cycling accessories in the United States. North Castle, a private equity firm focused on consumer businesses that promote health and wellness, is well known in the fitness and recreation and related industries. In addition to the Ibex and Performance Bicycle investments, North Castle has controlling interests in Octane Fitness, Cascade Helmets and World Health, and has realized successful investments in Equinox Fitness and EAS.BellMark Partners advised Ibex on the transaction. Morrison Cohen provided legal counsel to North Castle.About North Castle PartnersNorth Castle Partners is a leading private equity firm focused on investments in consumer-driven product and service businesses that benefit from “Healthy Living and Aging” trends. North Castle is a hands-on, value-added investor in high-growth, middle market companies in the (i) aesthetics & personal care, (ii) consumer health, (iii) fitness & recreation, (iv) home & leisure and (v) nutrition industries. North Castle’s current portfolio includes such well-known brands as Atkins, Bora Bora, glominerals, Mineral Fusion, Red Door Spas, Performance Bicycle, Cascade Helmets, World Health and Octane Fitness. Prior portfolio company holdings include Equinox Fitness, EAS, Enzymatic Therapy, CRC Health Group, Doctor’s Dermatologic Formula, Naked Juice Company and Avalon Natural Products. North Castle and its operating advisors partner with management to bring a wide range of strategic and operational capabilities, as well as an extensive knowledge base and network to build world-class companies. North Castle is headquartered in Greenwich, CT. For more information, visit www.northcastlepartners.com(link is external).About CMS CompaniesCMS Companies is a Philadelphia-based private financial services boutique. The firm invests in proprietary private equity and real estate transactions and has a sophisticated insurance practice. Since 1969, CMS Companies has invested more than $3.5 billion in private equity and real estate on behalf of its principals and clients. The firm has partnered with North Castle in several of its portfolio brands including Atkins, Performance Bicycle and Cascade Helmets. Over its 40 year history, CMS Companies has been recognized and received numerous awards for its philanthropic and community endeavors. For more information, visit www.cmsco.com(link is external).About IbexIbex is a designer of year-round merino wool and organic cotton outdoor clothing and cycling apparel, founded in the belief of the superior natural performance and properties of wool. Ibex couples the natural renewable resource with technical innovation and inspired design to create apparel for a diverse range of outdoor and active pursuits and passions. Men’s and Women’s items are divided into Ride, Base, Zing, Peak and Live categories, and are made from the best merino wool fabrics sustainably sourced from New Zealand. All Ibex clothing and accessories are available for purchase online, in catalog and through outdoor specialty stores. For more information, visit www.ibexwear.com(link is external). Source: GREENWICH, Conn., WYNNEWOOD, Pa. and WHITE RIVER JUNCTION, Vt., Sept. 23, 2010 /PRNewswire/ –
Vermont’s State Historic Sites posted a one-and-a-half percent increase in attendance for the 2010 season, with officials crediting more family-oriented events and improved promotion.A total of 66,900 people visited the state’s 10 historic sites during the 2010 season, which ran from May to October, up 1,012 from last year’s 65,888 visitors.The increase would have been even bigger had the state not been forced to close one site due to construction activity; when adjusted for that, the total attendance at the remaining sites was up six percent.‘We had a number of interactive and innovative special events at the sites ‘ like the star-gazing at the Hubbardton Battlefield ‘ that really appealed to families,’ said John Dumville, historic sites operations chief at the Vermont Division for Historic Preservation. ‘And we also expanded our efforts to publicize them, including radio ads in partnership with the Tourism Department and on Facebook.’Attendance figures at the two most popular sites ‘ the Bennington Battle Monument and the President Calvin Coolidge site in Plymouth Notch ‘ were up 7 and 8 percent respectively.The iconic monument ‘ which also opens earlier and stays open later than the other sites ‘ recorded 35,030 visits, while the Coolidge site saw 21,502 people stop in, including a crowd of over 700 people at the grand opening of the new President Coolidge Museum and Education Center in August.The attendance increase is especially impressive, Dumville said, because the Chimney Point State site in Addison was closed on June 14 over safety concerns caused by the reconstruction of the adjacent Champlain Bridge, which was closed due to structural problems in October 2009 and was demolished using explosives in December, 2009.That resulted in only 143 visitors to the site between its opening over the Memorial Day weekend and its closure, compared to nearly 3,000 who went to Chimney Point during 2009.Dumville said officials were hoping to re-open the Chimney Point site for the 2011 season, but would have to evaluate the status of the Champlain Bridge reconstruction in the spring, adding, ‘Obviously, the safety of the public has to come first.’The final event of 2010 is the Holiday Open House at the Coolidge site on December 11, which Dumville said is ‘always very popular.’Source: Vermont Tourism Dept. 12.8.2010For more information, visit www.HistoricVermont.org/sites(link is external) or visit the sites on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Montpelier-VT/Vermont-State-Historic-Si…(link is external)
Green Mountain Power Corp,One thousand days ago, Green Mountain Power (GMP) announced an ambitious goal to install and help its customers install 10,000 solar panels in 1,000 days. GMP announced today that it has exceeded that goal with more than 26,000 panels installed or approved for installation within its service territory.”Our customers clearly want more solar, and we are determined to help provide it,” says Mary Powell, the company’s President and CEO. “Local distributed generation from renewable energy has economic and environmental benefits for our customers and for Vermont. In-state development of renewable energy promotes the green economy, creating jobs, and enhancing Vermont’s energy independence.”GMP-owned solar projects include 952 panels in Berlin, 616 panels on the roof of the company’s Montpelier headquarters, and 308 panels at its Westminster Service Center. The company has also partnered with its customers to build 530 panels in a “solar orchard” at Shelburne Farms, 412 solar panels at National Life Group, and 345 panels at Shelburne Farms solar fieldCamels Hump Middle School. The electric vehicle charging stations at the company’s Colchester offices are solar powered, and the three public charging stations at St. Michael’s College, Healthy Living Market on Dorset Street, and in downtown Montpelier will also use the sun to generate electricity.Green Mountain Power set the stage for increasing the adoption of solar energy by customers through its SolarGMP initiative, which was approved by the Public Service Board in July 2008. SolarGMP pays customers six cents per kilowatthour for all the solar energy they produce. GMP would rather pay its customers to produce solar power, especially during peak demand times, rather than buy expensive power from out of state.In-state solar generation plays an important role in the mix of renewable energy because production tends to be highest on hot summer days, when air conditioning drives up the demand for electricity. “The more solar panels we have on line, the less electricity we have to buy from the New England regional market during peak times, which comes from expensive and higher carbon-emitting sources,” says Powell.In addition to solar, the company’s renewable generation sources include hydro, farm methane, wood, energy from landfill trash, and utility scale wind.About Green Mountain PowerGreen Mountain Power generates, transmits, distributes and sells electricity in Vermont and is a leader in wind and solar generation. It serves more than 96,000 customers. www.greenmountainpower.com(link is external). COLCHESTER, VT–(Marketwire – November 02, 2011) –
The Vermont Agency of Transportation (VTrans) today opened a storm-damaged stretch of Route 73 between Rochester and Brandon. Opening the road restores the entire length of Route 73, including a 14-mile segment known as Brandon Gap Road, to full east-west travel. Route 73 was severely damaged on August 28 by Tropical Storm Irene. Damage included multiple roadway washouts along Brandon Gap Road, and the destruction of a 75-foot bridge at the roadway’s intersection with Route 100 in Rochester. Crews last month erected a two-lane temporary bridge at the Route 100 intersection, but Route 73 remained closed to through traffic so that work crews could complete roadway repairs along Brandon Gap Road and reestablish two lanes of travel. While road repairs are not yet complete ‘ paving-related work and guardrail reestablishment are ongoing ‘ they are far enough along that traffic can be reestablished. Motorists using Route 73 are urged to drive with caution and expect occasional delays as work crews finish repairs. Irene severely damaged more than 500 miles of state highway, including some 200 state bridges. Today, only 2 bridge locations remain closed, and all but 9 miles of state roadway are open to public travel. Questions regarding storm-damaged roads and bridges related to Tropical Storm Irene can be answered by calling VTrans’ Irene Storm Center at 1-800-Vermont. People can also visit VTrans’ website at www.aot.state.vt.us(link is external) where they can sign up for travel updates for their mobile phone, and follow the agency’s progress on both Facebook and Twitter. VTrans 11.9.2011