INDUSTRY NEWS: Nov. 24, 2010

Diamond V CEO Bloomhall named Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year® 2010 national finalist

John C. Bloomhall, CEO, Diamond V

John C. Bloomhall, CEO, Diamond V, was named a national finalist in the prestigious Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year® 2010 Award Competition.  The award recognizes outstanding entrepreneurs who are building and leading dynamic, growing businesses.

Previously, Bloomhall had been named the Entrepreneur of the Year for the Upper Midwest Region. He was then selected as one of four finalists by an independent panel of judges in the National Distribution and Manufacturing category, a category in which 300 regional award recipients competed.

The category’s overall winner was Thad W. Simons, Jr., President, CEO, Novus Int..

Bloomhall was recognized at the Entrepreneur Of The Year® gala, the culminating event of the Ernst & Young Strategic Growth Forum in Palm Springs, Calif. The Forum is the nation’s premier gathering of high-growth, market-leading companies.

For more information, contact Diamond V at 800-373-7234 or visit the web site www.diamondv.com.

The Big Ass Fan Company® named Kentucky Manufacturer of the Year

The Big Ass Fan Company was named a Kentucky Manufacturer of the Year.

The Big Ass Fan Company was named Kentucky Manufacturer of the Year in the mid-size business category.

Big Ass Fan Company, the worldwide leading manufacturer of large-diameter, low-speed fans ranging in diameter from 6 feet to 24 feet, was previously named Kentucky Manufacturer of the Year in 2006.
Kentucky Manufacturer of the Year awards are given to manufacturers who have demonstrated excellence in manufacturing and fall into one of three categories: small, mid-size and large.
For more information on Big Ass Fans, visit www.BigAssFans.com or call 877-244-3267.

Balchem ranks 24th on Forbes’ ‘Top 100’ list

Balchem Corp., a global leader in choline and protection technology, announced it ranked No. 24 on the Forbes magazine 2010 Best Small Companies of America, moving up from No. 64 in 2009. This is the seventh consecutive year that Balchem has been publically recognized on this list.

The annual list focuses on public companies with annual revenue between $5 million and $1 billion. Each company’s rankings are based on stock performance, earnings growth, sales growth, and return on equity over both the previous twelve months and over five years. The Forbes’ Top 100 Best Small Companies in America list appeared in the Nov. 8, 2010 issue. To view the entire list, visit www.forbes.com.

Balchem acquires FAMI-QS certification for North American plants

Balchem Animal Nutrition and Health, a segment of Balchem Corp., recently acquired FAMI-QS certification for their North American plants. Balchem’s manufacturing facility in Europe has held this certification since 2005.

The certification demonstrates compliance with EU feed hygiene regulations, and is designed to help streamline U.S. exports with European feed and ingredient customers. Participation in the FAMI-QS program is auditable and based on voluntary commitment.

Completion of the FAMI-QS certification requirements put safety and quality measures in place for feed additives and premixtures. European Union authorities have officially adopted the FAMI-QS programs, one of only three systems to be recognized by the EU.

CoBank reports third quarter financial results

CoBank, a cooperative bank serving agribusinesses and rural infrastructure providers throughout the United States, announced financial results for the third quarter of 2010.

Quarterly net income rose 13%, to $132.0 million, compared with $116.8 million in the third quarter of last year. Net interest income for the quarter was $226.3 million, compared with $223.1 million a year ago. Average loan volume for the third quarter was $44.5 billion, compared to $43.4 billion for the same period in 2009.

For the first nine months of 2010, net income increased 4%, to $451.0 million, in part due to the impact of refunds of insurance fund premiums paid in prior years. Net interest income for the first nine months of 2010 was $674.9 million, compared to $716.0 million in the same period of 2009. Average loan volume for the period was $44.1 billion, compared to $45.0 billion the year before. Total loan volume for the bank at Sept. 30, 2010, was $46.5 billion.

Higher average loan volumes recorded during the quarter reflected the impact of recent sharp increases in prices for certain agricultural commodities, which drove greater seasonal borrowing requirements for grain cooperatives and other agribusiness customers. In addition, the bank experienced growth in its Rural Infrastructure operating segment, primarily due to increased borrowing by rural electric cooperatives, partially offset by declines in lending to service providers in the communications industry. Meanwhile, CoBank’s wholesale lending to other banks and associations in the Farm Credit System declined slightly, indicating a low rate of growth in demand for credit at the producer level of the U.S. farm economy.

At quarter end, 1.88% of the bank’s loans were classified as adverse assets, compared with 1.74% at June 30, 2010 and 2.17% at December 31, 2009. Nonaccrual loans improved to $240.4 million, compared to $272.1 million at the end of the second quarter. During the third quarter, the bank recorded a $21.0 million provision for loan losses, in addition to $16.5 million in provision recorded earlier in the year. The provision for loan losses in the first nine months of last year totaled $55.0 million. The bank’s reserve for credit exposure totals $497.5 million or 1.81 percent of non-guaranteed loans outstanding when loans to Farm Credit associations are excluded.

CoBank is a $60 billion cooperative bank serving vital industries across rural America. The bank provides loans, leases, export financing and other financial services to agribusinesses and rural power, water and communications providers in all 50 states. It is a member of the Farm Credit System. For more information, visit www.cobank.com.

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