LOCAL BUSINESS

State program on work force

Work force development and the state’s new Office of Workforce Transformation will be the focus of an Oct. 9 Portage County Industrial Round Table.

The event, at the Maplewood Career Center at 7075 State Route 88 in Ravenna, will begin with a continental breakfast and networking time at 7:30 a.m. The program will start at 8 a.m. and end by 9 a.m.

Richard Frederick, executive director of the transformation office, will speak. Ohio Gov. John Kasich created the office earlier this year to streamline the state’s work force system spread among multiple state agencies.

To register, call the Portage Development Board at 330-297-3470 or email behrhart@portagedevbd.org. Deadline is Tuesday.

Portage County Industrial Round Table events — sponsored by the Portage Development Board, local economic development directors and the chambers of commerce in Portage — are offered quarterly, focusing on issues affecting businesses.

Entrepreneur program set

Kent State University will host an open house for its new Blackstone LaunchPad office for student and alumni entrepreneurs from 1 to 4 p.m. today.

The office — in the Student Center — is named for the Blackstone Charitable Foundation, which teamed up with the Burton D. Morgan Foundation to sponsor the $3.2 million, three-year partnership with Kent State University and three other area colleges and universities.

The effort replicates a program developed at the University of Miami in 2008, which has generated 65 start-up ventures, 120 new jobs and drawn nearly 2,000 student participants, Kent State said.

The office is to be formally dedicated at a morning event featuring Kent State President Lester A. Lefton, Ohio Board of Regents Chancellor Jim Petro, Burton D. Morgan Foundation President and CEO Deb Hoover, Erik Lisher of Blackstone and Julie Messing, executive director for entrepreneurship initiatives at Kent State who oversees Kent State’s Blackstone LaunchPad.

Other area schools involved in the local Blackstone LaunchPad initiative are Baldwin-Wallace University, Case Western Reserve University and Lorain County Community College

Tressel to discuss leadership

Former Ohio State football coach Jim Tressel, now vice president of strategic engagement at the University of Akron, will talk about his new job and retaining the area’s emerging leaders at a Greater Akron Chamber breakfast Wednesday at Tangier restaurant, 532 W Market St., Akron. The event — titled Win At Home — will run from 7:30 to 9:30 a.m. To register and for more information, visit www.greaterakronchamber.org or call the chamber at 330-376-5550.

ECONOMY

Campbell to close plants

Campbell Soup is closing two U.S. plants and cutting more than 700 jobs as it looks to trim costs amid declining canned soup consumption. The world’s largest soup maker said it will close a plant in Sacramento, Calif., that has about 700 full-time workers. The plant, built in 1947, is the company’s oldest in the U.S. and has the highest production costs in the company’s system.

It is one of the company’s four major soup plants in the U.S. Campbell also plans to shutter one of its two spice plants in the country; that plant is in South Plainfield, N.J., and has 27 employees. Production will be shifted to the other plant in Milwaukee.

Dow posts 72-point gain

The Dow Jones industrial average ended up 72.46 points, or 0.5 percent, to 13,485.97. Snapping its longest loss streak since July, the S&P 500 added 13.83 points, or 1 percent, to 1,447.15.

The Nasdaq composite climbed 42.90 points, or 1.4 percent, to 3,136.60.

Compiled from staff and wire reports.