If You Ask Me, the ASME Conference was Incredible!

by Alan Rosenhoch, Business Development Manager

This summer, engineers from around the world convened in Buffalo at the American Society of Mechanical Engineers’ (ASME) annual conference on advanced manufacturing and design. As one of the world’s premier mechanical engineering conferences, a record-number (nearly 2,000 participants) was treated to four days of technical sessions and networking opportunities, while enjoying some of the nicest weather Buffalo summers have to offer.

The significance of our hosting this important conference cannot be overlooked. Usually reserved for larger American cities (like Portland, Chicago and Washington, DC), it was through the efforts of University at Buffalo’s Dr. Venkat Krovi and his team that ASME was convinced that Buffalo was the place to be in 2014. Dr. Krovi, associate professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, served as the General Conference Chair, while UB provided funding as Host Sponsor.

To make it even more special, ASME incorporated its inaugural Advanced Design & Manufacturing Impact Forum, a four-day event highlighting the opportunities and potential of the latest advanced manufacturing solutions available.

While the conference and forum are geared towards those with engineering degrees (which doesn’t include me), I was thrilled to take in several sessions. In particular, I enjoyed those focused on how additive manufacturing is improving the manufacturing and design of biomedical devices, and another on the growing opportunities for academia/industry collaboration.

One thing is clear: the Buffalo Niagara region, once a mecca for advanced manufacturing, remains highly influential in this critical industry and key assets like UB are leading the way.

Kudos to ASME, Dr. Krovi and UB for executing an excellent conference; I hope you enjoyed Buffalo as much as I enjoyed my participation!

New York’s High Tech Corridor

Click here for Academic & Industry Asset Maps

Click here for Academic & Industry Asset Maps

By Tony Kurdziel, Business Development Manager

In November 2013, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the creation of a clean-energy research campus on 90 acres of land along the Buffalo River calling this initiative the Buffalo High-Tech Manufacturing Innovation Hub @ RiverBend. At the same announcement, SORAA and Silevo were named as the first two tenants. Recently, SolarCity announced plans to get into domestic gigawatt-scale PV cell and module production (via acquisition of Silevo) that would further transform Riverbend.

Why New York? Partially because we have invested in developing properties such as Riverbend and the 1,250 acre development site , WNY STAMP. But more moreover, we are home a number of important assets that support a high-tech corridor, including:

  • Existing Fabs –IBM, Global Foundaries and multiple development sites created with the semicon industry in mind – STAMP, Marcy, Luther Forest
  • Top semiconductor industry suppliers like ASML, AMAT, TEL, Praxair, Edwards Vacuum
  • Rare infrastructure, especially low-cost, highly reliable hydropower and affordable, plentiful  process water
  • Deep connectivity with regional universities that support R&D and workforce needs
  • Six AAU universities across the New York state
  • Public-private partnerships, with more than $20 billion invested across New York by major players in the industry
  • Federal and state representatives that strongly support the semiconductor industry

If you are attending Semicon West, July 8-10 in San Francisco, CA, stop by booth #2411. The New York Loves Nanotechnology team will be there to discuss the region’s resources and advantages.


Buffalo to Host Leading Design Engineering Conference

asmelogo (3)

by Alan Rosenhoch, Business Development Manager

Late this summer, Buffalo will play host to one of the USA’s flagship conference for Design Engineering, the ASME 2014 International Design & Engineering Technical Conferences & Computers and Information in Engineering Conference (IDETC/CIE 2014). The conference takes place August 17-20, 2014 at the Buffalo-Niagara Convention Center in downtown Buffalo.

The University at Buffalo played a pivotal role in attracting this conference to Buffalo, with Dr. Venkat Krovi, UB Associate Professor, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering; Pathology and Anatomical Sciences, serving as the Conference’s General Chair.

Even more exciting, ASME has decided that Buffalo is the ideal venue to premier a new program to be co-located with IDETC/CIE 2014: the Advanced Design & Manufacturing Impact Forum. This four-day event will highlight opportunities that help participants realize the full potential of advanced manufacturing solutions. Impact Forum attendees will participate in leading-edge conversations on emerging technologies, applications, and solutions required to compete in the global advanced design and manufacturing marketplace.

ASME has identified Life Sciences & Medical Devices as one of eight highlighted program topics for the Impact Forum, featuring new/novel devices, materials, global manufacturing and biocompatibility. The Impact Forum will include an exhibit hall where companies will have the opportunity to draw the industry’s attention to their latest innovations. The Impact Forum has an impressive program of speakers across the eight topic areas.

The final day of the conference/forum (Wed. August 20) will feature a Career Fair, providing an excellent opportunity for companies and job seekers to connect.

I hope to see you there!

Welcome Nulife Glass – NY’s First CRT Recycler

Nulife Glass Furnace in Kent, England

Nulife Glass Furnace in Kent, England

by Alan Rosenhoch, Business Development Manager

This past year, I had the pleasure of working with UK-based  Nulife Glass, and particularly owner and founder Simon Greer, as they established their first U.S.-based operations and introduced their ground-breaking recycling technology to North America.  The following is their story of US expansion with links to information about their unique technology.

Project Background:

Nulife Glass, a highly specialized recycling company based in Manchester, England has developed a unique method to recycle the leaded glass found in Cathode Ray Tubes, or CRT’s (glass components commonly found in older style televisions and computer monitors). This technology is the first of its kind, and has yet to be used in the U.S.

A growing market awaits Nulife, as its technology solves a rapidly growing problem in the electronics recycling industry. Sweeping changes in flat screen technologies have made most CRT products obsolete, causing glass waste materials to accumulate in massive stockpiles. Previously, CRT glass was recycled with relative ease into new CRTs; but today, there are nearly no new CRT products being manufactured. CRT glass contains lead oxide; Nulife’s proprietary technology extracts the metallic lead from the glass which is immediately ready for re-sale to the metal markets and the remaining recycled glass can safely be used in other products.

Project Problem:

Nulife was looking to bring its new technology to the North American market with three to four locations geographically dispersed, one being in the Northeast. The company was drawn to the Buffalo Niagara region due the opportunity for an allocation of low-cost hydropower from the New York Power Authority (NYPA). The recycling process uses an electrically heated furnace which consumes a large amount of power, making this Nulife’s most expensive overhead cost. They are also a steward of the environment and green technology. The company practices this ideal in every aspect of its recycling process when possible, making hydropower extremely attractive. Nulife also needed to find a building suited to their manufacturing needs and in a location that could easily access a supply of CRT Glass.

Project Solution:

The largest hurdle to the project occurring in Buffalo Niagara was the company’s ability to navigate state regulatory agencies. Because Nulife’s technology is new and the first of its kind in the U.S., New York State’s regulatory bodies needed to evaluate the potential impact of the company’s operation. With BNE’s help, Nulife was able to move forward with their project, as the company demonstrated that its recycling process would have no negative effects on the environment. BNE also provided assistance with site selection, access to incentives and professional service providers.

The Chautauqua County Industrial Development Agency, the county’s Department of Economic Development and the Town of Sheridan also played important roles in site selection and assisted the company with the permitting process for their new facility.

Nulife will invest $3.7 million to renovate a 50,000 square foot manufacturing plant in the Town of Sheridan where they will create 25 new jobs.

Read about Nulife’s road to New York : http://www.ce.org/Blog/Articles/2013/April/World%E2%80%99s-First-CRT-Recycler-Coming-to-New-York.aspx

Read about Nulife’s technology: http://www.waste-management-world.com/articles/print/volume-13/issue-2/features/ray-of-light-for-crt-recycling.html

Continuing the Conversation with Canadian Businesses

by Tony Kurdziel, Business Development Manager

During the month of October, BNE has maintained a busy schedule in southern Ontario. During the first week of the month, we attended the Canadian Manufacturing Technology Show (CMTS.ca) in Mississauga, Ontario. Over two days, we had conversations with several dozen companies and came away with a handful of in-depth meetings that could germinate into new investment opportunities in our region. At the very least, this show provided a great opportunity to meet with companies across a wide spectrum of industry, and from across almost all provinces. As with all trade shows, it is largely a matter of “working the floor” and aggressively seeking companies that might have a business reason to locate in western New York.

On October 10, we attended the Society of Industrial and Office Realtors (SIOR) Canada East- Fall Seminar in Toronto. In addition to the the educational component of this event, we were able to network with the approximately 50 real estate professionals in attendance. These events are a great opportunity for us to keep the southern Ontario real estate community thinking about Buffalo Niagara when one of their clients decides to expand to the U.S. Hopefully these casual discussions will someday lead to inbound referrals for our locally-based developers and real estate brokers.

Prior to the SIOR event, we also had individual meetings with southern Ontario companies that are considering investment in our region. Again, more promising activity that is being driven by the strong Canadian dollar and our targeted marketing efforts.

This month Canadian Manufacturing.com also featured two Canadian companies that expanded their businesses accross the border in Plenty of Perks for Canadians Mulling Move to NY as a result of a visit we hosted in September.

A decade of hard work – and it’s just the beginning

by Tom Kucharski, president & CEO, Buffalo Niagara Enterprise

A recent article in Buffalo Business First, “Steelmaker picks Buffalo for new $102M plant,” says it all: Another win for Buffalo – after more than a year of courting and negotiations by a coalition developed through Buffalo Niagara Enterprise.

That’s another $102 million in new development and an estimated 172 jobs with great salaries and benefits. Success breeds success, too, and there’s widespread optimism that Buffalo Niagara’s future looks brighter than most people thought possible – most, but not our team at BNE.

For years, we’ve known that Buffalo Niagara’s got all the hallmarks of the greatest places to live and do business and for more than a decade, we’ve been laying the groundwork for today’s success.

Working with our investors and our public and private economic development partners, we’ve built coalitions of business leaders, elected and appointed officials, academics, researchers and entrepreneurs to develop strategies for business attraction.   Governor Andrew Cuomo and Empire State Development Corporation, the Western New York Regional Economic Development Council, County Executive Mark Poloncarz and the Erie County Industrial Development Agency, Mayor Byron Brown and the Buffalo Urban Development Corporation, Buffalo Niagara Partnership and Visit Buffalo Niagara are just a few of the many elected officials and partner organizations we work with to bring about the change necessary to move our economy forward.

From Silicon Valley to the United Arab Emirates, businesses are expanding and relocating here because we offer everything they need to succeed: a skilled and dedicated workforce, highly competitive commercial real estate, low-cost energy, research and development partnerships, proximity to numerous major North American cities and a vast array of networks for imports, exports and cross-continental shipping.

Buffalo Niagara is once again developing a reputation as a world-class region that’s competitive for businesses and attractive for employees.  But we’re up against some pretty tough competition including some of the largest cities in the country and the fastest-growing global hotspots. Continued success will take more than just “being in the game.”  Capitalizing on this momentum will require even more focus on long-term growth and continued economic diversification.   It will demand teamwork, and a unified regional approach.

That’s why BNE will keep working hard to build relationships, bring people together, and tell our great story to the outside world.

We’re proud of the work we’ve accomplished with our partners and we look forward to many more articles about Buffalo Niagara’s continued resurgence – the result of visionary planning, input and insight from a variety of stakeholders, and meticulous and consistent coordination.  Exciting things are happening in Buffalo Niagara again, with even brighter days ahead of us.

Check out these other recent success stories to learn more about why businesses like Geico, Yahoo, Greenpac and Alpina are relocating and expanding here – and if you’re interested in learning more about how the region can benefit your company’s expansion, relocation or startup, contact us today.

Building the Business Case for Buffalo Niagara

by Carolyn Powell, Business Development Manager

Since Alita’s plan to build a $102 million factory in Buffalo was announced earlier this week, we’ve been asked repeatedly, “What enticed them to Buffalo?” Some people seem surprised that we don’t mention the quality of life in the region as a central factor. Hundreds of man hours went into the competitive assessment and due diligence process for this project. The cost of doing business from electrical rates, labor, logistics, and cost of living all played key parts in the evaluation.

In a recent interview with Ali Hosseini, Alita president and CEO, Business First reported Hosseini said that building in Buffalo was “probably 25 percent” less expensive than Houston.

Recently companies like Yahoo, Alpina, Muller Quaker Dairy, Welded Tube, and Fed Ex all made their decisions to locate in our region based on the business case, testimony to the fact that the Buffalo Niagara region was once built for business and this remains true today. As Ward Thomas, president and CEO of Sentient Science – an advanced manufacturing company that just recently relocated to Buffalo Niagara from Idaho – said:

“We believe we can make more money faster, we can grow faster, we can hire people – and we can participate in the economy – faster by being here in Buffalo than any other city in the country.”

So what role does quality of life play in these decisions? In the due diligence process, that’s the cherry on top. It’s part of the reason we have a such great and productive workforce and why once we get companies and people to move here they –and their families – never want to leave. Buffalo Niagara:: Where Life Works

A Super Resource for Buffalo Businesses

Center for Computational Research

Center for Computational Research

by Alan Rosenhoch, Business Development Manager

The Center for Computational Research (CCR), a leading high performance computing center, is just one of the many assets located in the University at Buffalo.  Traditionally, CCR is seen as the computational backbone to much of the fundamental research conducted at UB,  but it is also an integral partner to the region’s business community – providing them with a competitive advantage.  Local companies are welcomed and encouraged to work with UB faculty, CCR staff and benefit from the center’s computing expertise to advance their business and research capabilities.  In fact, economic development is built directly into the CCR’s mission statement, namely to  “Foster economic development and job creation in Western New York by providing local industry with access to advanced computing resources, including hardware, software and consulting services.”   Indeed, this is made clear by CCR’s Director Dr. Tom Furlani, who adds “As a native of WNY, I am especially committed to help spur economic development in the region by working with local companies to leverage high performance computing to more rapidly advance their innovation and reduce development cycle time.”

Numerous local companies are already  collaborating with CCR, including recent BNE ‘win’ Sentient Science.  Click here to watch a short video on Sentient’s decision to relocate its headquarters to Buffalo,  as well as the critical role CCR played in the decision.

What makes the CCR so valuable is how it allows  businesses to utilize an incredibly expensive resource, in this case high performance computing, only when needed.  Rather than tying up precious capital in expensive fixed assets, CCR’s industry partners are more able to invest in other vital aspects to their business: talent and innovation.

Many of CCR’s industrial partners are supported through the New York State High Performance Computing Consortium (HPC2), a partnership between New York’s advanced network (NYSERNet) and three supercomputing centers: Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute’s Computational Center for Nanotechnology Innovations, Stony Brook University/Brookhaven National Laboratory’s New York Center for Computational Sciences, and UB’s CCR.  In the three years  of HPC2 existence, more than 30 industrial companies, representing all three regions (Western New York, Capital District and Long Island) have made and continue to make use of Consortium resources.

With more than 100 teraflops (trillions of operations per second) of compute capacity and 600 terabytes of high-performance storage, CCR provides industrial partners with access to advanced computing infrastructure as well as faculty and computational scientists with expertise in simulation based engineering and science.  In addition, CCR has a computer visualization laboratory with a tiled display wall, which allows teams of scientists to study high resolution images and data collaboratively in a comfortable setting.

Specific ways in which the CCR partners with industry include:

  • Provide the WNY and NY State industrial community with access to state-of-the-art high performance computing (HPC) resources (hardware, software and consulting services) to help foster economic development.
  • Work directly with NY State industry to help them utilize HPC resources to improve their productivity, develop new products, and provide them with a competitive advantage.
  • Provide the WNY research community with access to high performance computing resources in order to facilitate their research and in so doing increase the volume of externally funded research dollars coming to WNY.

Around the Region: Genesee County

by Tony Kurdziel, Business Development Manager

Muller Quaker Dairy in Batavia, NY

Muller Quaker Dairy in Batavia, NY

The BNE team recently got an guided tour on all of the latest developments in Genesee County, courtesy of our partners at the Genesee County Economic Development Center (GCEDC). During the course of the day, we toured five of the GCEDC’s commerce parks including the emerging “mega-site” in Alabama, NY, known as the Science Technology Advanced Manufacturing Park or STAMP (see http://www.gcedc.com/index.php/wny/ for full details).The unique infrastructure assets at this site, combined with its central geographic location, represents a rare opportunity for the Buffalo and Rochester metro areas: leveraging our collective academic and technical expertise in effort to bring the semiconductor industry to western New York. This is a project worth monitoring, as this massive endeavor is really picking up momentum.

In terms of current success, we were also afforded a tour of the new Quaker Muller yogurt factory, located inside the Genesee Valley Agri-Business Park. It was heartening to witness the leading-edge production process and to learn and interact with the new employees that Quaker Muller has added this summer. For those interested in the remaining land sites at the Ag Park, simply follow this link: http://www.gcedc.com/index.php/site-selectio/genesee-valley-agri-business-park/

Ready for our tour...

Ready for our tour…

Throughout the course of the day, we also visited the GCEDC’s available development sites in the towns of Pembroke, Batavia, and Bergen. We also toured the new flex office/industrial space at the Masse Place Gateway, right inside the Batavia’s rapidly evolving downtown. For the uninitiated, the City of Batavia offers a tremendous mix of unique shops and restaurants. Well worth a trip from the surrounding counties of western NY, and that’s not even counting the other attractions in Pembroke and LeRoy, and Darien!

Check out more data about Genesee County here, or if you are interested in learning more about what to see and do in Genesee, visit http://www.visitgeneseeny.com/.

Business Incubators – A Western NY Invention

by Tony Kurdziel, Business Development Manager

A recent post by Chris Finn, BNE Research Manager, detailed the accolades enjoyed by University of Buffalo’s Technology Incubator. However, most people do not know that business incubators* are a western New York invention. In 1956, Massey Ferguson announced it was closing its 850,000 square-foot tractor factory in Batavia, NY. The Mancuso family ultimately purchased it, and Joseph Mancuso started the daunting task of filling the facility with new business. Since there was little chance of another single tenant leasing the entire facility, Mr. Mancuso divided the building for many users, and provide multiple forms of support for the small companies that might fill the space. Now run by Mr. Mancuso’s son, Tom, the Batavia Industrial Center is a hub of grassroots economic development in Batavia, with a mix of “traditional” heavy industry, high-tech office users, craft manufacturers and fine arts.

Perhaps because of the legacy started by Joseph Mancuso, western New York is blessed with nearly one incubator in every county. For entrepreneurs that are looking to take their concept “out of the garage” and into larger production space, or for Canadian companies that are looking to test the U.S. market, our regional incubators offer tremendous variety, value and opportunity. Here, by county, is a list of different facilities in our region. Please explore them and find the incubator that suits your business.


Technology Incubator at Fredonia



University of Buffalo Technology Incubator


z80 Labs



Batavia Industrial Center (discussed above)



Harrison Place


*We used the National Business Incubator Association’s definition of business incubator to select these facilities for feature. “Business incubators nurture the development of entrepreneurial companies, helping them survive and grow during the start-up period, when they are most vulnerable. These programs provide their client companies with business support services and resources tailored to young firms. The most common goals of incubation programs are creating jobs in a community, enhancing a community’s entrepreneurial climate, retaining businesses in a community, building or accelerating growth in a local industry, and diversifying local economies.”