Quoted – Tech consulting firm does well by feeding well

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Tech consulting firm does well by feeding well

Table XI LLC is a place found only by already knowing where it is.

Nestled away in the West Loop, the consulting and software development firm’s street entrance is an unmarked doorway between a restaurant and a home furnishing boutique. Inside, one climbs two flights of stairs, makes a U-turn, and climbs a final flight of stairs before happening upon the actual office, which resembles a home, complete with a cozy, couched living room and a full kitchen.

“Usually, in an economic upswing the consulting companies’ revenue will start to spike before the employment rate goes up,” said Scott Testa, economics professor at Cabrini College in Philadelphia.

As a consulting company, Table XI is geared to solve problems for clients, but it solved two of its own problems in inspired ways: serving in-house lunches and paying a bounty on time sheets.


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Quoted – Eggs With That Escrow? – Hartford Business Journal

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Eggs With That Escrow?

One day soon, finding a real estate agent to help you house-shop may be as close as a Stop & Shop supermarket. While you’re there to grab some bread and a head of lettuce, you’ll be able to shop for a spacious colonial or renovated ranch, courtesy of the ‘micro offices’ real estate brokerage RE/MAX is installing in as many as 17 New England Stop & Shops, including one in Connecticut.

uch retail partnerships provide consumers the opportunity to conveniently purchase items and services they use regularly, said Scott Testa, marketing expert and business professor at Cabrini College in Philadelphia.

But the partnership between RE/MAX and Stop & Shop is is a bit odd, Testa said.

“Common sense says there’s not as much use for a real estate agency,” he said. “It’s not like a bank where consumers have transactions a couple of times a week. Consumers use a real estate agent maybe once every two or three years.”

Despite that, Testa said he can see consumers browsing listings if they are displayed in a way that doesn’t necessarily require interaction with a real estate agent.

“It’s all in how it’s presented,” he said.


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Quoted – Buncombe County’s 4th Walmart Supercenter: Is the war over?

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Normally, a new Walmart Supercenter going up around here draws a lot of attention and excitement — positive and negative. Some folks get all riled up about traffic, while others are busting at the seams to drop their cash there.

To me that seems to me like a lot of Walmarts in a county of 230,000 people. But to Scott Testa, a professor of business administration at Cabrini College in Philadelphia, it seems “not unusual at all.”

“When it comes to saturation it seems like a lot, but they like to go in areas and really dominate,” Testa said. “And the Supercenter format is really what they see their future in — they see the growth in the grocery sector, and that’s where they’re building a lot of momentum.”

While a lot of retail has been smarting during the Great Recession, Walmart keeps chugging along — overall, net sales for the fourth quarter of 2010 were $112.8 billion, up 4.6 percent. Worldwide, it operates 8,416 stores and Sam’s Club locations, employing more than 2.1 million people.

But, as Testa notes, we’ve probably gotten to the point where all the businesses that would’ve have been driven out by Walmart are already gone.

Testa, the college professor, said Walmart historically is “known as the most anti-union organization that exists,” but he also noted that the company has to compete on the open market for employees, “and it’s supply and demand.”


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Quoted – Smart Spending: How to Save on Valentine Flowers – ABC News

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Smart Spending: How to Save on Valentine Flowers – ABC News

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that prices of red roses increase right before Valentine’s Day. But Romeos on a budget don’t have to fall prey; they just need to act fast, now that Valentine’s is only three days away.

Ordering online from sites that work directly with growers is generally the best way to save on Valentine roses. You can get up to 30 percent off — and often get fresher flowers, says Scott Testa, assistant professor of business administration at Cabrini College, in Radnor, Pa. Just remember you’ll usually have to arrange them yourself.


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Quoted – Consumer credit contracts at slower pace – Medill Reports

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Consumer credit contracts at slower pace

December’s consumer credit figure, released by the Federal Reserve Board Friday, declined by $1.8 billion to $2.46 trillion from about $2.47 trillion in November, a drop of 0.07 percent. This follows a 0.5 percent drop of $13.8 billion in October. The drop in December was well under the $10 billion contraction estimated by economists in a survey by Bloomberg LP.

“I think things are starting to loosen,” said business professor Scott Testa about the nation’s overall credit market. But Testa, of Pennsylvania’s Cabrini College, cautioned that an improvement of credit would be slow.

“It’s not stuff that happens overnight,” he said.

Revolving credit, which includes credit card financing, continued to slide, falling another $8.5 billion to $866 billion from $875 billion in November, a drop of almost 1 percent. This follows a 1.6 percent drop of $13.8 billion from October.

“It’s all about the jobs,” Testa said of the drop, emphasizing that the figure reflects the weak job market, consumer spending and the remaining but decreased fear banks have about lending.

“It’s an indication that banks are nervous about extending credit,” he said.


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