Alliance Laundry Systems Moves Forward with $46 Million Expansion

RIPON, Wis. — Commercial laundry equipment manufacturer Alliance Laundry Systems is moving forward with a $46 million expansion project, less than two months after completing a production capacity increase, the company reports.

The largest expansion in the company’s history, the project plans call for adding 106,000 square feet of space for manufacturing and assembly, says Alliance.

The company anticipates breaking ground for the expansion in February 2014, and expects the added production capacity to be online in the second half of 2015.

CLA, Affiliates Secure Industry Sales Tax Exemptions

OAKBROOK TERRACE, Ill. — The Coin Laundry Association (CLA) and its state affiliates are reporting success in six of its campaigns that protects sales tax exemptions for the self-service laundry industry, effectively saving Laundromat owners at least $20 million in 2013, the association reports.

The CLA says that the states of Minnesota, Ohio, Louisiana, Maine and North Carolina all pushed tax reform plans that would have eliminated the sales tax exemptions for laundries, and could have cost Laundromat owners $10,000 to $15,000 a year per store.

SBA Promotes Online Security Through Free Course

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is helping small-business owners keep their business information safe online through a new, free course, the agency reports.

The self-paced Cybersecurity for Small Businesses online course teaches small-business owners best cybersecurity practices and protection against cyber threats, says the SBA, which created the course in support of President Obama proclaiming October as National Cybersecurity Awareness Month.

Online Presence, New Technology Usage Up: NSBA Technology Survey

WASHINGTON — Maintaining an online presence and utilizing new technologies for business operations is becoming the norm for many small-business owners, according to the National Small Business Association’s (NSBA) 2013 Small Business Technology Survey.

The survey aims to provide “detailed insight on how small business is faring in today’s ever-changing technology landscape” and “clarity on how small-business owners utilize technology,” according to the NSBA.

Apartment Markets Dip in Third-Quarter NMHC Survey

WASHINGTON — All four indexes of the National Multi Housing Council’s (NMHC) October Survey of Apartment Market conditions fell below 50 for the first time since July 2009, the NMHC reports.

“After four years of almost continuous improvement across all indicators, apartment markets have taken a small step back,” says Mark Obrinsky, NMHC vice president of research and chief economist. “Conditions cannot continue to improve indefinitely and new development is at least somewhat constrained by available capital—though more on the equity than the debt side.”

FTC Warns of Growing Utility Bill Scam

WASHINGTON — The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is warning of a utility bill scam, which involves a “new twist” scammers are using to get money.

“Imagine receiving a phone call from your utility company saying they’re about to cut off your electricity. The caller ID looks like it might be a legitimate phone number, but you know you’ve paid your bill,” says the FTC. “The caller says, ‘I can stop this, but only if you pay me.’”

CSC ServiceWorks to Acquire Mac-Gray for $524 Million

PLAINVIEW, N.Y. — CSC ServiceWorks Inc. (CSC) and Mac-Gray Corp. have entered into a “definitive agreement” and plan of merger, with the aggregate value of the transaction worth $524 million, CSC reports.

CSC will acquire all of outstanding Mac-Gray common stock for $21.25 per share, payable in cash, representing a premium of 42% over the company’s closing stock price Oct. 14, CSC adds. The transaction’s aggregate value takes into account Mac-Gray’s outstanding stock options, restricted stock units and net debt as of June 30.


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