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Business Observer Friday, Sep. 7, 2007 14 years ago

Corporate Report

Pierce Manufacturing grows Bradenton production, Forbes partners on Web offeringsAgile, partner release Crime Stoppers messaging program

Corporate Report

by Sean Roth | Real Estate Editor

Pierce Manufacturing grows

Bradenton production line

Pierce Manufacturing will expand its production of Medtec ambulances at its Bradenton division with the addition of All Duty Type I vehicles. The Bradenton facility currently builds all of the Medtec brand Type II ambulances, which are based on the Ford E-350 Van chassis. The All Duty Type I ambulances are the largest and most complex ambulances and are typically built on a medium duty International, Freightliner or GMC chassis.

The move of the line to Florida is designed to open capacity at the Goshen, Ind.-based Medtec facility to allow it to expand its current production rate and support new product offerings.

The new product line and organic growth is expected to result in 140 new jobs in the Bradenton area. The Bradenton plant currently employs about 310. Pierce will also invest about $1.2 million in equipment, tooling and facility improvements to handle the line changes. The production line changes are expected to make the company eligible for up to $417,000 in tax refunds from Florida's Qualified Targeted Tax Incentive program.

Medtec Corp. and Pierce Manufacturing are both wholly owned subsidiaries of Oshkosh Truck Corp. Pierce Manufacturing is a manufacturer of custom fire apparatus and has a second facility in Appleton, Wis., Forbes

partners on Web offerings, a multimedia investment education Web site, has reached an online media partnership with Forbes Media LLC, publishers of Forbes magazine,, and other properties. The deal will give members access to investment content from and Forbes' newsletter editors.

Forbes' insights, comments and market commentary will be featured on through its MarketResource partner page with sections that include the Video Stock of the Week, Investing Ideas, Guru Insights, ETFs, and Mutual Funds. 

The page will also feature Forbes content from InterShow conferences, including digested articles from Forbes newsletter editors in Top Pros' Top Picks, short segment video interviews in the Video Network, and Webcasts from Forbes newsletter editors, allowing access to all of the Forbes resources has to offer in one convenient location.

"For 29 years, investors have traveled the world to attend the large Money Show conventions," Charles Githler, chairman and co-founder of InterShow said in a press release. "Now, members will profit from direct access to the unique content, investment ideas, and video footage created by the outstanding editors at Forbes. continues to align itself with Forbes and a few other leading investment media as part of our mission to provide members with the richest combination of video, text and select links. This provides a continuous supplement - to attending the live Money Shows - now available from the comfort of your personal computer."

Membership in is free.

As part of the partnership, will provide Forbes with various multimedia content from its newsletter editors for display on Forbes media Web sites.

Agile, partner release Crime Stoppers messaging program

Agile Communications Group, the Tampa-based text-messaging technology and applications company, and the IT firm Anderson Software, have released a new software program designed for tipsters. The program, TipSoft SMS, allows the more than 1,200 Crime Stoppers programs worldwide to receive tips anonymously and securely reply to tipsters via their cell phones.

Officials with the two companies point to the positive impact of the similar technology in Boston and South Africa.

SMS text messages utilize a small data bandwidth, are transmitted faster than voice calls, and can sometimes be sent even when voice traffic is jammed or signal strength is too weak for voice calls. Text messages also require much less battery power and can be done when a phone is in a remote location.

Related applications for use by law enforcement agencies are being developed and are schedule for release this fall.

Tampa-based Agile Communications Group is focused on communications and marketing product for mobile phones. Nacogdoches, Texas-based Anderson Software develops software and secure web applications designed specifically for the law enforcement, homeland security and emergency management industries.

GerdauAmeristeel, Chaparral merger passes deadlines

Tampa-based Gerdau Ameristeel Corp. is two significant steps closer to its merger with Chaparral Steel Co. The companies report the deal has passed its waiting period under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976 without action by either the Federal Trade Commission or the Department of Justice.

In addition, the companies received a letter from the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States stating it has determined there are no sufficient issues of national security and concluding the committee's review of the deal.

In other recent merger news, Gerdau Ameristeel expanded its financial backing for the acquisition, moving from a previously announced deal with J.P. Morgan Securities Inc. to what it calls a "firm commitment" from ABN AMRO Bank N.V., HSBC and J.P. Morgan Securities Inc. as joint arrangers.

The new financing is said to provide the company additional flexibility over the previous offer while offering terms that are at least as favorable as those contemplated by the original financing commitment.

The deal still requires approval of the merger plan by Chaparral's stockholders.

Midlothian, Texas-based Chaparral Steel is the second largest producer of structural steel beams in North America, a supplier of steel bar products and a recycling company.

Gerdau Ameristeel is the second largest mini-mill steel producer in North America.


Sarasota company

renamed Impact Productivity

Impact Organizing, a Sarasota office productivity improvement firm, has changed its name to Impact Productivity. The name change was designed to more effectively communicate that the company's focus on business efficiency and effectiveness. with logo

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