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SEEKING CLIENTS: Robert Wheeler, co-owner of Friends of Toto Inc., a dog day care and grooming business in Pawtucket, spent $400,000 to double his business space to accommodate growing customer demand but now he must find additional customers to cover the construction costs of expansion.
PBN PHOTO/MICHAEL SALERNO

Preppin’ for RECESSION. PBN survey: Talk of a coming downturn is...

If and when the country will slip into a recession depends on who you ask, but the gloom is already settling over Rhode Island...
STRENUOUS SUMMER: Brad Marthens, who co-owns The Atlantic Inn on Block Island with his wife, Anne, had to cut room rates to help fill vacancies and didn’t have enough staff to open the inn’s restaurant daily until August, something he is usually able to start doing in June.
PBN PHOTO/K. CURTIS

SINKING SPIRITS: Slowed supply chains, inflation, labor shortage are sapping optimism

There’s only so long you can keep your chin up. After a 2½-year battle against health and economic devastation, Rhode Island companies have been beaten...

HURTIN’ FOR HELP: PBN survey shows tight labor market among challenges...

Money can’t buy everything, including ­talented workers. At least that’s what Rhode Island companies are learning as business activity rebounds, but finding people to fill...
IN THE FIGHT: Paul Amaral, owner of East Providence-based Amaral Custom Fabrications Inc., is struggling to fill open positions but still has high hopes for his business this year. / PBN FILE PHOTO/RUPERT WHITELY

Hits keep coming, but pandemic-hardened businesses adapting

Inflation is at a 40-year high and qualified, committed workers seem scarcer than ever. Yet profits are up strongly for many local businesses from...
EXPANDED OFFERINGS: John Nunes Jr., owner of Newport Vineyards and Winery LLC in Middletown, said the business has fared much better in weathering the COVID-19 pandemic than it did the 2008 financial crisis due to its diversification into “agritainment,” offering customers a full experience of wining, dining and touring the 100-acre farm beyond just selling bottled wine. / PBN PHOTO/DAVE HANSEN

PBN survey: Rebound under way, but repercussions from pandemic not making...

Rhode Island businesses are climbing out of the crater caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, but many are finding that the lingering fallout is dampening...
FILMING FOR "VAULT," a movie about the 1975 Bonded Vault heist, took place in downtown Providence in 2018. The film was released the following year. / PBN FILE PHOTO/JAMES BESSETTE

Is expanding the R.I. film tax credit program worth it?

Rhode Island lawmakers are hoping that increased funding for the state’s motion picture tax credit program will be the lure needed to reel in...
PRODUCT OF THE PANDEMIC: Megan McCutcheon displays some of the items she produces for Newport Needlepoint LLC, a company she started when the state went into a lockdown last spring at the height of the pandemic. / PBN PHOTO/KATE WHITNEY LUCEY

For many, COVID-19 sparks desire to start a venture

After Michelle Politano was laid off when the COVID-19 pandemic arrived last year, she made the decision to pursue her lifelong dream of opening...
WEIGHING OPTIONS: Linda and Bill Bombach are the co-owners of Home Healthsmith LLC in Portsmouth. The business sells and installs home wheelchair lifts and elevators. Linda Bombach says prices for plywood and other supplies used to make the lifts and elevators have increased, but she hasn’t yet decided whether to pass along those additional costs to her customers.  / PBN PHOTO/TRACY JENKINS

PBN SURVEY: Businesses realizing pandemic pain is going to last

Rhode Island businesspeople are coming to terms with the harsh reality that the COVID-19 pandemic will likely hurt their bottom lines for years to...

PBN survey: Most R.I. businesses foresee recovery from pandemic within a...

Despite the economic devastation inflicted by COVID-19, Rhode Island businesspeople remain optimistic that the worst is over and their businesses can only improve in...

Positive outlook needed for small-business recovery

Throughout the 13-year history of PBN’s biannual business survey, owners have tended to be more positive about the future of their own companies than...
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