Ups and downs

(Ups) to Fifth Third Bank, which donated $50,000 to Lorain County’s Humility of Mary Housing Inc. The grant will enable the organization to construct FAITH House (Families in Transitional Housing), a multi-unit housing facility designed to accommodate eight families in need.

(Ups) to NineSigma Inc. The Beachwood-based Web portal launched a matchmaking product aptly named ProposalNet, which is designed to link up research institutions with buyers and sellers for their research and development projects. With the Great Shakeout still in effect, it’s good to see local companies finding unique ways to utilize the efficiencies of the Net.

(Ups) to Medical Mutual CEO Kent Clapp, who returned a $120,000 bonus after auditors determined Medical Mutual underestimated its books by $10 million. With employees nationwide questioning their bosses’ compensation in a tight economy, it’s the type of move that inspires confidence.

(Downs) to LTV. The loss of annual orders of 500,000 tons of steel from General Motors pours salt on the festering wound that is LTV’s struggle to survive. Forget about the deal reached between management and workers in early July; even if the company continues through 2001, without GM’s business, LTV has bigger trouble on the horizon in 2002.

Correction: A story in the July issue of SBN incorrectly identified IMG. The company’s initials stand for International Management Group. We apologize for the error.