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Corporate Report: July 13

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  • | 6:25 a.m. July 13, 2012
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Harrington's As Seen On TV Inc. buys namesake website
As Seen On TV Inc., the Clearwater-based parent business of TVGoods Inc., closed on its purchase of It acquired the website for $2.72 million in cash, stock and warrants, significantly lower than the previously announced $5 million acquisition price. focuses on selling products online that have been featured on television. It has more than 2 million customers, 700,000 email registrants and hundreds of thousands of unique visitors each month.

The website is licensed and operated by the company Delivery Agent, which generated $5.45 million in gross revenue in 2011. Through the first half of the year, the website generated 40% revenue growth year-over-year.

As Seen On TV Inc. assumed the existing license agreement with Delivery Agent and will receive a 7.5% royalty of the gross revenue generated by the website.

“We are thrilled to now own what we believe is a Crown Jewel of the direct response industry,” Kevin Harrington, chairman of As Seen On TV Inc., says in a press release. “ is the lone intellectual property in the expanding As Seen On TV category, and one we feel that is undervalued and underutilized.”

TVGoods is a direct marketing company that develops, markets and distributes consumer products. It's designed to help entrepreneurs introduce products using commercials, infomercials, TV shopping networks, retail outlets and Internet, catalog and print media.

Cryo-Cell new proxy battle to reenter spotlight this week
The drama at Oldsmar-based stem-cell preservation company Cryo-Cell International Inc. was set to continue this week. David Portnoy, an investor who waged a successful proxy fight to control the company's board of directors last year and become chairman and co-CEO, is now facing a battle for control of the company from previous board members Ki Yong Choi and his brother-in-law.

Last month, Choi, who owns more than 2 million shares of the company stock, introduced a proxy to change the board again. Choi argues that the bonuses and salaries to be paid to Portnoy and his brother and co-CEO, Mark Portnoy, are excessive and have few performance related requirements. Choi also says that the company should not reimburse the Portnoy Group for litigation costs for the initial proxy battle.

In response, the current board issued a press release that touts the company's achievements. It says that in the last six months it developed a national outside sales force, terminated costly revenue sharing agreements and reached a new contract with a former affiliate, Cryo-Cell de Mexico.

The proxy vote is set for the shareholder meeting on July 10.

Valpak issues franchise territory to couple for Salem, Ore.
Largo-based Valpak signed a franchise agreement with Jason and Michelle Muth to expand to Oregon's Benton, Linn, Marion, Polk and Yamhill counties.

The couple has several years of experience in the finance and commercial real estate industries. Prior to joining Valpak, Jason Muth worked at Sunwest Management, one of the largest privately owned senior housing operators in the U.S.

The new franchisee mailed their first Valpak Blue Envelope this month.

Valpak mails 20 billion coupons to more than 40 million targeted households per month in more than 170 cities in 45 states and four Canadian provinces. The company says franchisees should have a minimum liquidity of $75,000 and a minimum net worth of $150,000.

Voalte updates its solution for speed, simplicity

Sarasota-based Voalte released Voalte One 2.0, an update to its healthcare smartphone communications systems.

The company says the goal of the update was to offer a faster and more streamlined user experience. The update has a new user interface, simplified directory to navigate between units and buildings, enhanced search, and a quick response feature. It also allows a sender to know when a message has been read and the availability of others.

“We are seeing a tremendous adoption in the market,” Voalte's Vice President of Innovation Trey Lauderdale says in a press release. “In fact, Voalte users are exchanging over 1 million text messages a month. To keep up with growing deployments and usage, we have re-engineered our solution to be faster, easier to use, and more reliable than ever.”

Algenol Biofuels hires new chief scientific officer
Fort Myers-based Algenol Biofuels Inc. named Paul Roessler its chief scientific officer. Roessler, a Ph.D., will oversee all of Algenol's scientific research and development efforts.

He has more than 30 years of research experience involving the physiology, biochemistry and molecular biology of plants and algae. Prior to joining Algenol, Roessler was vice president of renewable fuels and chemicals at Synthetic Genomics Inc., where he led a program to develop renewable fuels and chemicals from cyanobacteria and other types of algae. His background also includes experience at The Dow Chemical Co., Monsanto and the Aquatic Species Program of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, where he developed technology for the production of algal biofuels.

“Dr. Roessler is joining Algenol at a very exciting time,” Paul Woods, Algenol's CEO and co-founder, says in a press release. “His extensive expertise in algal biofuels is a major addition to our pioneering research and development efforts as we move toward commercialization.”

Algenol is an industrial biotechnology company that is commercializing its patented Direct To Ethanol algae technology, projected to allow the production of ethanol for less than $1 per gallon using sunlight, carbon dioxide and saltwater. A pilot-scale integrated biorefinery project to demonstrate the commercial viability of the process is under development in Fort Myers.

Retina Health Center, others developing eye injection device
Drs. Alexander Eaton and Hussein Wafapoor of Fort Myers-based Retina Health Center collaborated with other researchers to invent a new device to improve the safety and comfort of patients during the administration of eye injections. Clinical trials of the investigational device are scheduled to begin soon at the Retina Health Center.

An estimated 2 to 3 million people receive eye injections every year for conditions such as macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, branch and central retinal vein occlusions, and other retinal conditions.

The device incorporates a small gauge needle that is covered by a thin protective sleeve, which is designed to protect the needle from contamination risks.

“For patients suffering from macular degeneration, regular eye injections every few weeks to save their sight are a reality,” Eaton says in a press release. “And given the increase in the number of medications and treatable conditions, the number of patients receiving injections continues to grow. With the development of this new device, we are hopeful we can improve the way injections are done in the near future.”

Eaton and Wafapoor are co-developing the device with Dr. Robert Avery of California Retina Consultants, and former Alcon employees Dave Booth and Dyson Hickingbotham.

Eaton will present on the team's development of the device at the American Society of Retina Specialists annual meeting in Las Vegas in August.

ArtisTree Landscape awarded USF Sarasota contract
Venice-based ArtisTree Landscape Maintenance & Design has been awarded a one-year contract for maintaining the grounds at the University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee.

“A well-maintained campus enhances the college experience for students, faculty and visitors,” Frank Fistner, ArtisTree president, says in a press release. “We are extremely proud to be selected and are committed to keeping USF Sarasota-Manatee looking its absolute best.”


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