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Business Briefs

August 16, 2017

Specials and sales at Friendly Flowers in Millsboro thru Aug. 19

Friendly Flowers Florist and Gifts in Millsboro will have a grand reopening through Saturday, Aug. 19. There will be sales with up to 70 percent off selected merchandise, daily door prizes, and drawings for free flowers and gift items. The store has been open since February and has grown drastically. For more information, email friendlyfflorist@gmail.com.

Free class on retirement and Social Security set Aug. 21

A free class titled Retirement and Social Security: How to Accumulate Wealth and Have Financial Freedom is being offered to the public from 10:30 a.m. to noon, Monday, Aug. 21, at Lewes Public Library. This course will cover where retirement money comes from, how to invest it, and what to do to protect it. The class will also cover how to best choose when and how to take Social Security. There will be an opportunity to ask questions.

Sponsor Delaware Money School provides well-qualified instructor Diane Heydt to the public. Having written, spoken and taught on the subject for many years, she breaks down the subject to simple layman's terms. This class focuses on steps the lay person can take to make sure they are not making common mistakes about saving for retirement, Social Security and the decision-making process as well as making money last throughout retirement. Everyone should be aware of these concepts and be able to consult with their financial advisor on a plan for their future. Upon completion, participants will be equipped to make better financial decisions in the context of planning how to navigate to and through retirement.

The Money School is the signature program of the nonprofit Delaware Financial Literacy Institute. Participants can enroll in this program, earning a certificate that demonstrates a commitment to financial education. To register, go to www.dfli.org. Walk-ins are welcome.

Trip Advisor recognizes Hooked Seafood & Martini Bar

Hooked Seafood & Martini Bar announced that it has received a TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence. Now in its seventh year, the achievement celebrates hospitality businesses that have earned great traveler reviews on TripAdvisor over the past year. Certificate of Excellence recipients have continually delivered a quality customer experience.

"We recently celebrated our fifth year in business after others said we would never make it," said owner Tom Garvey. "Guests who are aware of the old TV show refer to us as 'Cheers.' They tell us we have the friendliest staff and the best seafood and martinis at the beach."

Owner Chris Colgan says, "We put a lot of love into our restaurant. We're working owners. Everything is made from scratch, old-school style. Even the pasta is homemade. It is quite an honor to be acknowledged once again with the TripAdvisor Award of Excellence."

Hooked Seafood & Martini Bar is at 18585 Coastal Highway, Suite 23, in the Midway Shopping Center. For more information call 302-827-4944 or email hookedseafood@comcast.net.

New venture capital firm seeks investment opportunities

Rehoboth Beach-based Coastal Venture Capital announced its official launch July 27. It is seeking new investment opportunities in early-stage and growth-oriented companies. The firm founded by two Delaware natives is not the typical venture capital firm. Coastal Venture Capital is a nonprofit organization that provides a platform for bringing its members together with high-growth businesses and entrepreneurs. CVC uses a unique model combining a membership of successful business executives, entrepreneurs and investors, and a centralized deal-sourcing process. The founders believe this structure enables each member to benefit from the group's diverse expertise while maintaining decision-making for their investments, while entrepreneurs seeking capital are able to access funding in a more efficient and flexible way.

The founders' goal is to make capital easier to obtain, under equitable terms, for new and growing companies, particularly those in the mid-Atlantic. They feel there are countless great businesses and entrepreneurs that either are unable to tap into the traditional venture capital funding network or do so under onerous financial terms. Over the last six months, CVC has established a strong investor-member base with significant capital to invest and is now encouraging entrepreneurs and businesses to submit their investment opportunities via the company's website.

The firm will consider investments in any industry, but is specifically interested in financial services/fintech, hospitality, agriculture, energy, IT, medical, materials and consumer product sectors. For more information on the company and investment strategy, or to submit an investment for consideration, go to www.coastalventurecapital.com

Bethany-Fenwick chamber seeks events manager applications through Aug. 18

The Bethany-Fenwick Area Chamber of Commerce announced the resignation of Executive Director Kristie Maravalli, who has accepted the position of director of development with the Joshua M. Freeman Foundation. Lauren Weaver, currently the events and member relations manager, will assume the role of executive director effective Monday, Aug. 7. Applications are being accepted for an events and member relations manager through Friday, Aug. 18.

"I have immense gratitude for Kristie, Lauren and the entire team. The chamber has seen significant growth in the last four years," says Ron Derr, board of directors president. "Change is always bittersweet. With Lauren transitioning into the director position, the chamber will continue in its success due to our stakeholders and support of the business community."

In June 2013, Maravalli began working as director of membership, and Weaver was hired to her current role only three days later. Maravalli was promoted to executive director in January 2014. During this time, the team reached benchmark achievements in events, membership and publications with the organization undergoing a major overhaul to its operational structure. "Our team, with the guidance from our board of directors, has worked at such a high level of efficiency with dedication and passion," said Maravalli. "Words cannot express the appreciation and pride I have in the work we have done together in advancing the mission."

For more information, go to www.business.bethany-fenwick.org/jobs/.

NAI Emory Hill  broker Ann Bailey executes major leases

NAI Emory Hill's Lewes office broker Ann Bailey, CCIM, has executed several major property leases recently in Sussex County, representing the landlords in several transactions.

Three leases were executed at the Vineyards at Nassau on Old Vine Boulevard in Lewes. They include First State Compassionate Care, a medical marijuana dispensary, which leased 4,122 square feet; First Collect, a collection agency, which leased 2,265 square feet; and Dr. Richard Tananis, a dentist, who signed a lease for 3,514 square feet office space. Bailey represented the Vineyards at Nassau.

Bailey also executed a 4,640-square-foot office lease at 1307-09 Bridgeville Highway in Seaford to Addiction Solutions, and a retail lease at 18389 Olde Coach Drive in Rehoboth Beach to HMD Gear. Bailey represented the landlords, Halpern Family Partnership and Colonial East LP, respectively, in those lease transactions.

Independent Resources Inc. names new executive director

Despina Wilson, EdD, has been named executive director of Independent Resources Inc. in Wilmington. She succeeds the late Larry Henderson, who founded the Delaware-based organization in 1994. With offices in Wilmington, Dover and Seaford, IRI is a nonprofit center for independent living that provides quality services to people with disabilities by assisting them in achieving and maintaining independent lives.

"Despina comes to IRI with an innovative spirit," said Moni Edgar, chair of the IRI board of directors. "Her passion for helping and connecting with people, and being resourceful with solutions, is ripe for taking Independent Resources to the next level in the 21st century."

Wilson has directed several multimillion-dollar projects while serving in senior leadership positions in state and local governments. A strong advocate for individuals with disabilities, Wilson played a vital role with the Department of Education in all of Delaware's 19 school districts. As the director of school construction, she ensured that new and existing school buildings met all accessibility requirements as mandated by the Americans with Disabilities Act. Her expertise ranges from financial and organizational management practices to statistical and data analysis tools, and strategic planning.

In addition to her doctorate degree in education, she holds master's degrees in business administration and public administration, as well as a bachelor's degree in accounting. Prior to being hired as the organization's executive director, Wilson volunteered with IRI for two years. For more information, go to www.IRI-DE.org.

Retirement planning boot camp to start Sept. 7 at Lewes library

A series of free retirement planning classes is being offered to the public from 5:30 to 7 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 7, Tuesday, Sept. 12, and Thursday, Sept. 21, at Lewes Public Library. The topics to be covered are retirement preparation, Social Security, and investing in retirement. The three-part course is a detailed retirement planning seminar designed to educate those who are nearing retirement or who have recently retired.
Sponsor Delaware Money School will provide well-qualified instructor Robert Jeter, CRPC, free for the course. Having written, spoken and taught on the subject many times, he will break down the subject to simple layman's terms. This class focuses on steps one can take to increase the probabilities of a successful retirement. The goal is to help make people aware of the challenges in retirement and teach them suitable ways to overcome them. Jeter is a financial advisor offering securities and advisory services through Cetera Advisors LLC.
The Money School is the signature program of the nonprofit Delaware Financial Literacy Institute. It offers more than 600 free, no-hassle personal finance classes a year, throughout the state, taught by volunteers from the nonprofit and corporate sectors. The library is at 111 Adams Ave., Lewes. To register online, go to www.dfli.org. For more information, contact InFocus Financial Advisors at robertj@retireinfocus.com or 410-677-4848.

Internet chat support launched for insurance consumers and agents

The Delaware Department of Insurance has added a live chat support feature to its website. The chat box offers online users a quick and convenient way to connect with a department specialist who can answer basic insurance inquiries. "It's our job to answer insurance questions, and our goal to be as accessible as possible in doing so," said Commissioner Trinidad Navarro. "Adding chat support is a win for everyone. It provides our consumers with near-instant access to our institutional knowledge, and it streamlines the process of answering the more straightforward inquiries."

The live chat support is available from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday to Friday, except state holidays. During offline hours, consumers may leave their contact information with their message so someone from the department can contact them. To find the chat box in the lower left corner of the department's webpage, go to www.insurance.delaware.gov. Consumers must enter their name and email address before initiating a chat. Agents and consumers with basic questions are encouraged to utilize the chat. Because of the sensitive nature of the information exchanged when filing a complaint, complainants should continue to call the department's Consumer Services Division at 302-674-7310.

Delaware searches for unclaimed property holders

The Delaware Department of Finance's Office of Unclaimed Property sent out letters May 8 in an effort to reach unclaimed property owners. Unclaimed property can include forgotten savings and checking accounts, uncashed checks, insurance policy proceeds, stocks, and utility deposits and refunds. After years of inactivity, these accounts are now considered abandoned, and have been turned over to the state for safekeeping. The Office of Unclaimed Property has processed over 50,000 claims in recent years, successfully reuniting citizens with more than $402 million in previously unclaimed funds. To search the website or file a claim, go to https://delaware.findyourunclaimedproperty.com. Documentation can be submitted online through the state's secure servers, making the entire process safe and fast. For more information, call the Office of Unclaimed Property at 855-505-7520 or email escheat.claimquestions@state.de.us