Thursday, May 02, 2002

Morning Memo


Hot tips and news to start your business day

Today's Number: 50,000

        Loans approved by the U.S. Small Business Administration in fiscal year 2001 — totaling almost $12.2 billion.

Today's Mover

        Kristin Shepard has been named manager of benefits and employment at Contech Construction Products Inc. Ms. Shepard joined the company in 1971. She graduated from Miami University with a bachelor's degree in systems analysis.

— Shirley Dees

Today's Career Talk

        Local author Peter Block thinks a critical question for workers and employees is a simple question, too: What do we want to create together? In his book The Answer to How is Yes, Mr. Block suggests that all companies should ask employees that question and have the conversation that is sure to follow. “It stops the political discussion of what they want from us and how we are going to respond, and starts the purpose-filled discussion of what we will initiate,” he says. “This dialogue alone levels the playing field.”

— John Eckberg

Today's Money Tip

        A beta of a stock is a measure of its volatility. It measures the average movement of a stock relative to the whole market: a beta of 1.5 means the stock is 50 percent more volatile than the market. A stock's alpha measures its performance adjusted for that riskiness. A large alpha indicates that the stock has performed better than would be predicted given its beta.

— Amy Higgins

Today's Company: Pete Delois Recreations Outlet

        Dogs And Kids: Pete DeLois founded his Invisible Fence business in 1983 and expanded into backyard play systems six years later. In 1994 he sold his dog fencing specialty to concentrate on children's recreation. Recreations Outlet now has three showrooms: in Mariemont, in Columbus and inside the Kids First Sports Center in Symmes Township.

        Their Work Is Play: Recreations Outlet sells Rainbow Playsystems, Goalsetter Systems basketball equipment, AlleyOop Sports trampolines and Step 2 toys and furniture. The company also owns Playhouses USA, which produces everything from rustic play cabins to mini-manors.

        Royal Commission: Last December the company sold one of its Napa Valley Manor playhouses to the king of Morocco, who bought the unit for his nieces. A Recreations Outlet employee was flown to the palace to assemble the playhouse on site.

        Party Site: Recreations Outlet rents its Mariemont showroom for children's parties.

— Jenny Callison

       

       



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