No. 32: Bye NBTY, a Calone update and Vincent gets a new ear

OUTSOURCED: Ronkonkoma-based supplement maker NBTY will shut down its Amityville plant and outsource production to a California firm, eliminating 214 local jobs, Newsday’s Aisha Al-Muslim reports. The Amityville site had received IDA support, which the Babylon Town agency said it would seek to recover. NBTY employs about 2,600 on Long Island.

CALONE UPDATE: Venture capitalist David Calone, whose campaign for the 1st congressional seat was reported here Monday, has organized a jobs advisory council of big tech and union names, including CA’s Russ Artzt, Stony Brook’s Yacov Shamash, entrepreneur Andrew Hazen and labor leader John Durso. “One of my top priorities is to come up with new ways to foster innovation, to take advantage of our region’s assets, to help new companies get started and to help our existing businesses grow and create more and better-paying jobs,” Calone said Thursday. He also won a personal endorsement from the chair of the Brookhaven Dems.

IN GREAT HEALTH: North Shore University Hospital was named to Becker’s Hospital Review’s 2015 list of the “100 Great Hospitals in America.” Becker’s looked at rankings from US News & World Report, Truven Health Analytics, Healthgrades, the American Nurses Credentialing Center, The Leapfrog Group and several other resources to compile the list.

QUOTE OF THE WEEK: From Cablevision CEO James Dolan during this week’s Internet & Television Expo in Chicago: “Consolidation of (the NYC cable market) would provide a great deal of ingenuity, and much more access to resources for the customers and lower prices.” That would certainly be a first for a monopoly.

But: Consolidation would also give cable companies more time to react to the surge in non-cable programming, including original video not produced by the usual suspects. Almost a quarter of all American adults now watch digital video content – that’s 59 million people, only a quarter of which are millennials. A report from IAB

TGIF: A fine Friday everyone and a special welcome to new readers. Don’t forget to send tips, news, ideas, calendar items, releases, promotions, job postings, criticisms and corrections to

THE ULTIMATE BRAIN DRAIN: Cold Spring Harbor Lab officials considered moving the facility off Long Island in 1948 due to transportation concerns and the fact that local life was not very culturally rich. At the time, the LIRR train from Penn Station to Syosset took 50 minutes and required a $4 taxi ride from station to lab, a “sizeable expense for a laboratory assistant to bear frequently.” Penn to Syosset today? An average 59 minutes. Innovate LI

SINGLE FOCUS: The state’s 10 regional economic development councils have been asked to focus on a key industry area as part of this year’s $750 million eco-aid contest, from which Long Island could win up to $105 million for capital projects and other bennies. Bioscience would be the logical choice here, but the program stipulates that no two regions pick the same industry, so the race is on. Back off, Buffalo. Newsday’s James T. Madore with details.

LETTUCE EAT SAFELY: Goddard Labs, a biotech startup at Stony Brook U’s Calverton incubator, won the coveted best in show award at Mid Atlantic Bio Angels’ 1st Pitch Life Sciences competition. Goddard’s proprietary, low-cost, disposable testers can do a speedy in-field study of water and crops to find the kind of nasty things that lead to national recalls. INNOVATE LI



The Rauch Foundation invests in ideas and organizations that spark and sustain success in children and promote systemic change in our communities. To read more about the foundation’s many efforts, including the Long Island Index and the Build A Better Burb program – and now a new blog – visit


HOT EVENTS: Empire State Development teams up with LISTnet and LaunchPad Huntington for speed mentoring. May 19, from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., which is pretty speedy. Free to entrepreneurs, registration required.

Or, same night, the Suffolk Inventors and Entrepreneurs Club monthly meetup, including a group of young entrepreneurs from Commack High. 7 p.m. to 9 p.m., H. Lee Dennison Building on Vets Highway, use the East entrance. No fee but you need a photo ID to get past security. Hope the Commack kids have driver’s licenses.

LISTnet’s June happy hour event is June 2 at Refuge in Melville. Free appetizers, drink specials and face time with Lyz Charter.


HIT OF THE WEEK: Gluten-free foodsters Michelle and Chris Kelly topped the traffic to hands down. We suspect they helped their story along. (And thanks.) Innovate LI

CSHL is pitching a $75M facility that would speed delivery of research to market. Innovate LI

Great Neck-based real estate investment platform Sharestates inked a $30M commitment with heavyweight investor Ranger Capital. Innovate LI

The Long Island Index launched a new blog that includes sage thoughts from Rauch Foundation prez Nancy Douzinas, cartoons from Walt Handelsman and more loose thoughts from Innovate’s John Kominicki.

And: Traverse lands potential licensing deal, earnings from Cablevision and Henry Schein, a wage board call by the Guv and a big investment in Buffalo. Innovate LI

ON TARGET: Almost 77 percent of our traffic is from people under the age of 44, according to Google analytics. Scary what they know about us, right?

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LIQUID GOLD: Liquidity Nanotech won Tech Crunch’s annual Disrupt cup startup contest, besting six other finalists to snag the $50,000 first prize. Liquidity’s product, Naked Filter, uses Stony Brook University nanotechnology to purify water in a $24 consumer bottle, but bigger markets beckon in developing countries. TC

As part of its presentation, Biobots, which is marketing a 3D printer for biomaterials, produced a replica of Van Gogh’s ear.

Other finalists included hardware accelerator, secure authentication solution Cloudwear, artificial intelligence customer service DigitalGenius, battery tech startup Nucleus Scientific and drop-and-drag website creator PageCloud.

EVENT CARE: Paradocs, a NYC startup that delivers on-site medical care at concerts, fundraisers and festivals, topped $1 million in revenue and expects to double that this year. The company, founded by paramedic Alex Pollack, grew from a city requirement that organizers of events with more than 5,000 attendees provide their own emergency health services. The company is staffed by 400 part-timers. Despite heat and alcohol, less than 1 percent of event-goers require hospitalization. Crain’s

THE EYES HAVE IT: Regeneron Pharmaceuticals posted quarterly earnings that topped estimates as sales of its popular eye drug, Eylea, surged 51 percent to $541 million. Investors are also looking ahead to the approval and launch of Regeneron’s new cholesterol drug, Praluent, due in the third quarter. As we reported back in April, Regeneron CEO Leonard Schleifer was part of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s trade mission to Cuba.

BIT O’ MONEY: Bitcoin, the digital currency beloved by techies of all stripes, took a big step toward legitimacy Thursday when the New York State Department of Financial Services approved the first Bitcoin exchange. NYC-based itBit, can now legally do business with customers who wish to buy or sell Bitcoins. Crain’s

No surprise: itBit quickly announced it had raised $25 million in new financing and appointed three new board members, including former FDIC chief Sheila Bair and Bill Bradley, the former senator from New Jersey.


UBER MAPS? Ride-sharing firm Uber is said to be interested in Nokia’s mapping service, called Here, which is on the market for something in the $3 billion range. The price could go up, however: European carmakers BMW, Audi and Mercedes have banded together with Chinese search engine firm Baidu to make their own bid. Uber also has grocery delivery and carpooling services that could benefit from proprietary mapping. NYT

KEEPING PACE: Fortune is in the midst of surveying CEOs for its Fortune 500 ranking and asked the question, What is your biggest challenge? More than three quarters of respondents so far have cited the “rapid pace of technological change” as a Top 3 challenge, ranking it higher than cyber security, shareholder activism, increased regulation or competition from developing countries.

MARKETING TO GEN Z: Sometimes called the iGeneration – as in, it’s all about me – Generation Z, born in 1994 and later, wants robust content and better designed websites. They want it to be mobile. And it better be personalized. Companies need to get on board, as this generation is graduating from high school and college and just starting to enter the workplace. Harvard Business Review


TAL VEZ, SI: Is Chipotle’s guacamole so special it’s actually worth the $1.80 extra you pay to get it on your burrito? Check out the recipe and see.

LOOKING GOOD, VLAD: Embalming goes back thousands of years, but nothing compares to Russia’s 90-year effort to preserve the body of Vladimir Lenin. A full-time team of six, called the Mausoleum Group, is in charge of maintaining the look, feel and flexibility of the former Soviet leader, who was just rolled out for his 145th birthday celebration. The group also helps maintain the bodies of Ho Chi Minh and North Korean father-son duo Kim Il-sung and Kim Jong-il. Scientific American

WE SMELL SETTLEMENT: A Park Slope man who was hit in the head by a flying manhole cover is suing Con Ed and names his dog, a black Lab named Abby, as a co-plaintiff. Salvatore Grillo said he and his pet suffered “serious personal injuries” when the manhole cover shot 25 feet into the air following an underground explosion. Abby also suffered psychological damage and has been afraid to leave home since the incident, Grillo charged.

YOU WANT KALE WITH THAT? McDonald’s announced its turnaround plan this week, including a test of breakfast bowls and adding kale as an ingredient in salads. But analysts wondered if the average McDonald’s kitchen could handle the “complexity.” Seeking Alpha

SERVE ME UP, SCOTTY: On the Starship Enterprise, 24th century crew members could order up just about any meal they wanted thanks to a shipboard “replicator” that beamed out the requested repast in seconds. Now, two Israeli inventors have created a machine, about the size of a coffee maker, that does pretty much the same thing. And yes, there’s an app. Reuters boldly goes here.

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