Opinion

Putting on the Shvitz

By J.L. KOMINICKI // Can you build a $500 million brand on flash alone? If you’re Justin Bieber, apparently so. Otherwise you need a product, and a pretty good one at that. Still, flash can give you a powerful head start, as we’re learning from the incredible success of Dollar Shave Club, the California-based men’s grooming platform that completed a $75 million raise this week, a short nine months after closing on a $50 million…


Think big, but don’t act like it

By J.L. KOMINICKI Those of us trying to scale a business got a free lesson from McDonald’s this week on the dangers of getting too big to pivot. I know, I know, we should all have such problems. But the tighter your niche, the quicker the potential of getting to a size at which market changes become a very big deal. Which is where Mickey D’s has found itself. McDonald’s, as you know, was built…


The real downside of losing our young people is what they leave behind. Us.

By J.L. Kominicki // You’ve probably heard Long Island is having trouble hanging onto its young people, particularly those in the coveted 18 to 34 cohort, the age group most likely to take the jobs we don’t want at wages we couldn’t possibly survive on. Well, unless we were also still living at home. The youth decline is variously called “brain drain” or “birth dearth,” depending on whether you believe our bright young people are leaving…


The not quite magical, but mysteriously necessary, Start-Up NY tour

By JOHN L. KOMINICKI // The state’s economic development arm hit Long Island this week with what wags are calling the Start-Up NY Damage Control Tour. And there’s plenty to prehend. In an unwelcome audit released last month, state Comptroller Tom DiNapoli chided the program for spending millions of dollars on advertising while producing scant new jobs. The media quickly piled on, led by withering NY Post coverage and Crain’s coronation of Empire State Development…


Don’t buy this for Father’s Day

By JOHN L. KOMINICKI // With Father’s Day nigh, the Web and social media are downright distended, digitally speaking, with gift ideas for the favorite progenitor-figure in your life. No one has better stock than The New York Times’ T Store, which assaults every holiday like it’s 1940 France, with a hull-down, shock and awe deployment of ads, native content and printed supplements that tout rare coins and advertising ephemera, cuff links, even a personalized…


VIEWPOINT: A second shot at suburbia

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio’s progressive agenda offers an historic opportunity for Long Island to right itself. By JOHN L. KOMINICKI // At long last, Long Island and New York City share a problem that isn’t the MTA. Rapid population growth and soaring rents are forcing the city to look outside the five boroughs for help in building tens of thousands of apartments needed now or promised as part of Mayor de Blasio’s sweeping environmental…


Is it NIMBYism if it’s already in your backyard?

BY JOHN L. KOMINICKI History buffs know the Long Island Rail Road was built for one purpose: Getting people from Brooklyn to Boston. And it might have worked if a rival railroad hadn’t figured out the south shore of Connecticut was a better route. Bankrupt and with miles of empty track, the LIRR was forced to settle for the only other business around: Moving people to New York City and back again. It wasn’t much…


Gov. Andrew Cuomo visits with Cuban government officials.

OPINION: Cuomo didn’t have to go so far south

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo was in Cuba this week to push his Global New York strategy, which seeks to expand trade and other business opportunities for Empire State companies. At his side: executives from a passel of prominent New York brands, including JetBlue, MasterCard and yogurt-maker Chobani. Big Pharma and biotech were especially well represented, with representatives from Pfizer, the NY Genome Center, Regeneron and the Roswell Park Cancer Institute also in tow. If the…


Howard Zemsky

VIEWPOINT: Shuffling in from Buffalo

Howard Zemsky, Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s newly minted economic development chief, was on Long Island recently to hob and nob with pols and local business leaders. In a speech to a smaller-than-we-would-have-expected crowd at the Long Island Association, Zemsky reminded listeners that he’s really one of us – born in Brooklyn but raised in Woodbury, which qualifies – and that Long Island and Western New York share much in common. OK, not much, but this: The…