Claremont, Upland chambers to hold joint mixer, business expo

The Claremont and Upland chambers of commerce will hold a joint mixer and business expo from 5 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 27, at the DoubleTree Hotel Claremont, 555 W. Foothill Blvd. Approximately 50 vendors will be displaying their businesses at the event, according to a chamber news release.  The event is sponsored by the San Bernardino County Economic Development Agency.  Information: Upland Chamber, (909) 204-4465; Claremont Chamber, (909) 624-1681.

Redlands chamber schedules networking event

The Redlands Chamber of Commerce will hold a “Business After Hours” networking event from 5 to 7 p.m. Sept. 9 at Security Bank of California, 201 E. State St., Redlands.  Cost: $5 for members with reservations; $10 for members at the door and $15 for nonmembers.  Information: (909) 793-2546.

Pomona company sells subsidiary, pays down debt

General Environmental Management Inc. in Pomona, an environmental and waste-remediation company, has sold the stock of its GEM Mobile Treatment Services Inc. unit to MTS Acquisition Company Inc.  According to a company news release, GEM MTS will function independently and “with no disruptive transitory period.”  GEM received promissory notes for $5.6 million, the assumption by GEM MTS of about $1 million of accounts payable as well as future royalties.  GEM is using the consideration to pay down debt.  Information: www.go-gem.com

Commercial materials maker to open facility in San Bernardino

Isolatek International, a manufacturer of fireproofing materials for commercial buildings, will open its new manufacturing and warehouse facility today at 4062 N. Georgia Blvd., San Bernardino, according to a news release.  The new facility, which is located in the San Bernardino Valley Enterprise Zone, is 65,000 square feet and will serve the company’s West Coast customers.  According to the company’s release, “Isolatek International selected the enterprise zone because of its strategic location to the country’s western markets and the business and tax incentives it offers.”  The company has plans to hire additional employees by the end of the year.

Ontario communications firm hires new senior strategist

Rebecca Knapp has joined ThunderWheel Communications in Ontario as account supervisor and senior strategist, according to a company news release.  Knapp comes to ThunderWheel with more than 15 years of public relations, marketing and business management experience. Her specialties include “project management, strategic planning, branding initiatives, crisis communications and harvesting opportunities from emerging trends, such as the advent of social media and Web 2.0,” according to the release.

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Home prices show signs of stabilization in the Inland Empire

In the San Bernardino-Ontario-Riverside metro area, home prices in June were down 28.5 percent from the year before, according to newly released data from First American CoreLogic and its LoanPerformance Home Price Index.  The decline was slightly less than in May, in which the median home price in the Inland Empire was 29.7 percent lower than the previous year’s.

Between January and June 2009, CoreLogic’s home-price index showed an improvement of 3.3 percent, according to the release. This is the first time in four years that the spring and summer seasonal price trend exhibited its normal pattern, according to CoreLogic.  The seasonal improvement in home prices in the first half of 2009 is a positive sign, but a decline in distressed sales, rather than an increase in traditional home prices, was responsible for the change, according to CoreLogic. If the decline in distressed sales is sustainable and not a result of recent foreclosure moratoriums, this could be the first step toward recovery, CoreLogic’s analysts state.

Statewide, prices continued to improve in June as California’s depreciation rate fell 17.0 percent to its lowest value since October 2007.  Information: www.loanperformance.com