SALAMANCA at Philadelphia Furniture will be able to take on a long-sought loan on its Rochester Street facility.
The Salamanca Industrial Development Agency board agreed on Tuesday to allow the company to resume payments on a former loan from Fancher Furniture Co., freeing up Bruce Erickson, who previously bought out his brother’s share Brian.
Philadelphia had made all payments on the defaulted Erickson loan.
“I’m just thrilled it’s finally over and we can’t wait to get back to work and generate more business,” Philadelphia Furniture Comptroller Ronald Gilbert said.
“Regardless of how ours turned out, I was impressed with what they did,” he said, referring to the actions of the SIDA board during the meeting. “They did what they were there to do, which was to help attract new business and help existing businesses.”
Sida Vice President Jeffrey Walker opposed the measure. Michael Zaprowski was absent.
Philadelphia owner John K. Desmond Jr. of the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area purchased Fancher Furniture in March 1997 from the Erickson family.
Fancher had lost its main client, Lifestyle Contract Furnishings, and was in danger of closing, according to a summary from Philadelphia Furniture Co. presented to the SIDA board in May.
Desmond purchased all the assets, accepts the buildings that were leased to Fancher, and includes an option to purchase calling for satisfaction of the AIDS loan.
Desmond asked to take over the balance of Erickson’s loan, but the previous board denied his request.
Gilbert appeared on Tuesday to ask the new board to consider the same. The issue was discussed for about 15 minutes in executive session, after which the loan takeover was approved 3-0.
The loan balance as of Thursday was $181,889, according to AIDS accountant Peggy M. Wiser.
The change allows Philadelphia to own all of the buildings and contents of 100 Rochester St. The terms of the loan remain the same, with the obligation having passed from the Erickson brothers to Desmond.
AIDS attorney Ronald D. Ploetz prepares the necessary paperwork.
The manufacturer lost about a third of its workforce in the summer of 2001 when a major customer, Ethan Allen of Danbury, Connecticut, cut orders in a market decision.
About 100 full-time employees remained. Gilbert said Philadelphia now has 55 full-time employees, but expects the market to pick up starting in March.
“Employment is down, but we have a lot of great offers and we’re encouraged,” Gilbert said. “We are very optimistic. »