Sunday, April 25, 2004

Tristate business notebook

Roly Poly adds three sandwich shops

Three new Roly Poly sandwich shops opened last month in the Tristate. The first, in West Chester Township's Voice of America Shopping Center, opened March 16. The following week, a Roly Poly was launched in Erlanger's Dixie Center. And on March 30, the popular wrap vendor opened a shop in Mason's White Blossom Shopping Center.

The three new shops bring to eight the number of Roly Polys in the area. Roly Poly's corporate headquarters is in Key West, Fla.

The Roly Poly menu features more than 60 sandwiches rolled on soft flour tortillas, salads and soups. Vegetarian options are available, as is free lunchtime delivery with a minimum $15 order. The restaurants also provide catering services. They are open seven days a week but hours vary.

In West Chester Township, the Roly Poly is at the corner of Tylersville and Cox roads. Information: 777-5220. The Erlanger eatery is at 3072 Dixie Highway, next to Dixie Heights High School. Information: (859) 426-1934. Mason's new Roly Poly is at 7924 Mason Montgomery Road. Information: 770-5554.

Meeting seeks diversity on Kroger project

CARTHAGE - Small, minority- and women-owned companies that want to participate in The Kroger Co.'s garage and condominiums project downtown should attend the last in a series of meetings this week.

A contractors' information meeting, scheduled for 5:30-7:30 p.m. Thursday, will communicate specifics on sub-contractor participation and give companies a guide to follow in submitting bids. The development is at the corner of Vine Street and Central Parkway.

"This is a great opportunity for prime contractors to show good-faith efforts in connecting with small, minority, and women-owned businessesfor the project," said Kia McWhorter, project manager for Ellington Management Services Inc., the company working to ensure broad inclusion on the project.

The meeting will be at The Este Conference Center, 6270 Este Ave.

Information: 554-4012, ext. 11 or

Consulting company provides Web designs

MASON - After a career in advertising and e-business, Doug Landers has established his own Internet consulting company.

Intelligent Interactive Solutions provides Web sites to small and medium-sized businesses.

"We offer a variety of services, from 'repainting' an existing site with an updated look and feel, to a complete redesign of an existing Web site," Landers said. "We provide tools for the client that enable them to maintain their own content without having technical knowledge of (coding language) ."

Information: 252-7374 or

Furniture company expands in Milford

MILFORD - A specialty furniture company is growing again.

Rustic Comforts, a purveyor of furnishings suitable for lake and lodge homes, is celebrating six years in business by expanding into an adjacent storefront. The store, at 120 Main Street, doubled its square footage within the past few years and has now acquired more space at 122 Main Street. Co-owner Paula Jenkins says that Rustic Comforts now has 4,500 square feet of showroom space.

Jenkins and her partner Thom Heil travel several times a year to find log cabin-style home decor, including furniture, lighting, rugs, bed linens, blankets and art. The store is the area's exclusive dealer for several lines, such as Old Hickory Furniture Co. and Rustic Natural Cedar Furniture. This spring's feature is willow garden furniture.

Rustic Comforts is open 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday-Friday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday.

Information: 965-8944 or

Consultant offers help to manufacturers

PLEASANT RIDGE - After a stint in Chicago, supply chain management professional Ron Althaus has returned here to establish Althaus Consulting LLC.

Althaus has worked with a number of area manufacturing companies in purchasing, production, inventory management and warehousing, and holds certificates in production and inventory management, integrated resource management and purchasing management. The certification comes from the Educational Society for Resource Management, also known as APICS.

"I have taught supply chain certification preparation classes to hundreds of students since my decision to be an entrepreneur in 2000," he said.

Classes are held at the client's site.

Information: 252-0788 or

Firm specializes in security evaluations

BRIDGETOWN - Timothy A. Behne's new business forces him to think like a burglar.

Crime Prevention Alliance LLC helps business owners and homeowners identify places where criminals could enter the premises.

"I take photos of all four sides of the residence and point out to the homeowners where they have bad security. I then write a detailed report of the deficiencies and give recommendations on how to correct them. I will also go and check people's homes for them while they are away," Behne said.

"For businesses I evaluate the potential for robbery and break-ins. Again, I take photos and give the owner a detailed report along with recommendations. I will also do security checks on closed businesses."

After serving 15 years with an area police department, Behne retired in 2002 because of an injury. His responsibilities as a police officer included being fingerprint specialist, crime scene supervisor, evidence technician and gang interdiction officer.

Information: 574-1697 or

Graphic design firm updates its Web site

HYDE PARK - Tin Box Studio celebrated its 10th anniversary by putting on a new face to its Internet audience.

The graphic design firm's completely redesigned Web site ties in with its updated corporate identity, said principal Ande Weinstein.

Since Tin Box Studio often sends files around the globe, a password-protected FTP log-in page has been added, enabling clients to transfer or download large graphic images.

Information: 321-2234 or

Retirement Corp. adds 401(k) service

SYCAMORE TOWNSHIP - Retirement Corporation of America has a new 401(k) plan tailored for employees of businesses that have workforces of 100 or fewer people.

The company has introduced a plan that offers professional money management for each employee, said Bob Newton, the plan's director.

"We manage the employees' money, and they don't have the stress of picking mutual funds within their 401(k)," he said. "The administrative cost is low."

Newton added that RCA also offers classes that help 401(k) participants to become better informed about all financial topics.

Dan Kiley, CFP, founded RCA more than 20 years ago. It is at 11500 Northlake Drive.

Information: 769-4040 or

E-mail or fax 564-6991 with openings, expansions and other news about neighborhood businesses.

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