Lancaster firm pitches high-tech approach to tracking Covid-19 risk

Contact tracing is turning into a mess rather than an effective tool to stop Covid-19. People aren’t cooperating, contact tracers are becoming overwhelmed and the virus continues to spread at a record rate. “It’s almost like we’re at a dead end with that approach,” said Victor Owuor, chief product officer at Lancaster-based investment firm Aspire …

York-area manufacturer gears up for life, uncertain economy after shutdown

When its doors reopen this month, York County manufacturer Weldon Solutions will be proceeding with caution: The company plans to bring back a portion of its 40 workers at a time.  “I want to see what it looks like to bring more and more people in,” said Travis Gentzler, Weldon’s president. “I don’t want to …

Lancaster County hat maker hangs on

Online sales are still flowing for Bollman Hat Co. in Lancaster County. And the company has started making and selling wool felt masks. But revenue is 10% of what it was before the Covid-19 pandemic. That has meant some tough decisions at the employee-owned company.

Thinking twice, but making masks and looking ahead

The orders are the easy part for Allegheny York LLC, a small manufacturer in Manchester Township, York County. They have been pouring in ever since a TV news feature on the company’s efforts to make plastic face shields, said Elisha Weir, vice president and sales lead for Allegheny York, which she co-owns with her husband, …

A pioneer of coworking preps for a comeback

Over the last decade, Anne Kirby transformed The Candy Factory from an object of curiosity into a beacon of community. This year — the 10th anniversary of the Lancaster coworking space — was poised to be its best yet, she said. Then, in mid-March, Kirby began the difficult process of winding it down, even before …

Modeling compassion in the crucible of Covid-19

The consultants at Work Wisdom were used to the video-conferencing app Zoom, the instant-messaging service Slack and other tech tools that connect people remotely.  So when Pennsylvania ordered non-essential businesses to close their physical locations in mid March, the Lancaster-based firm adjusted relatively smoothly, said the firm’s president, Kedren Crosby. The canceled contracts have been …

Startup, interrupted

Sam Beiler and Jared Neff had been drawing up growth plans for their Lancaster-based startup, but the Covid-19 pandemic dashed their forays into raising outside capital. Now, their goal is to begin generating a profit more quickly. “That’s kind of the mindset of any startup right now,” said Beiler, co-founder and CEO of a social …

At JPL, events drop but other work powers ahead

Among the first to raise alarms for JPL was its small staff in New York City. As the first cases of Covid-19 were appearing in the Big Apple in early March, JPL’s four New York employees said they wanted to work from home. “At that point, it was like, ‘Oh, really?’ But they just knew …

Winery follows tested formula but future still uncertain

Carl Helrich took over Allegro Winery on Sept. 10, 2001. Family and hard work got him through the economic contraction that followed the terrorist attacks the very next day. He has been having flashbacks to those rocky times as he leans on a similar formula to get through the Covid-19 pandemic, which is likely to …