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WorkingPerson.com joins the "Michigan 50 Companies to Watch" as Michigan's Governor congratulates small business.

Buchanan, Michigan - April 20, 2006 - WorkingPerson.com, the e-commerce division of The Working Person's Store, was recognized as one of the "Michigan 50 Companies to Watch," during an awards program held in East Lansing, Michigan on April, 19th. Chief Executive Officer, Eric Deniger and Chairperson, Jennifer Deniger received the "Michigan 50" award at ceremonies conducted during the second annual Michigan Celebrates Small Business event, sponsored by the Edward Lowe Foundation.

WorkingPerson.com's Jennifer Deniger said, "Meeting Governor Granholm, I was impressed by her energy and the clear vision she has for helping small business grow jobs, while diversifying the State's economy." Michigan's Governor, Jennifer Granholm a featured speaker at the event, highlighted the State's strategic initiatives and partnerships designed to support the formation and growth of small business in Michigan.

"The Michigan 50 Companies to Watch" competition is a truly unique awards program designed to shine the spotlight on second-stage companies," says Edward Lowe Foundation Executive Director Mark Lange. The Edward Lowe Foundation is a Michigan based not-for-profit foundation with a mission is to "champion the entrepreneurial spirit" by assisting second-stage entrepreneurs in learning from each other.

"Startup companies and large corporations often garner attention for their achievements," says Lange. "But growing second-stage enterprises work mostly behind the scenes, even though they generate the bulk of new sustainable jobs and is a powerful economic force underpinning the high quality of life most Americans enjoy."

Recognized as a leading national source for high quality, work clothing, work footwear, outerwear, safety gear and accessories, The Working Person's Store is a leading multi-channel retailer that has experienced sales growth in connection with its 2002 launch of its award winning website (www.WorkingPerson.com). Eric Deniger, the company's CEO said, "This is an honor I'm proud to share with every member of our team. They did a great job of providing truly outstanding customer service, while helping us grow our e-commerce business by nearly 500% in 2005."

As an honoree selected for the "Michigan 50", companies nominated must be second-stage companies, defined as employing 6 to 99 full-time-equivalent employees and generating $750,000 to $50 million in annual revenue or working capital in place from investors or grants. In addition, the companies must be privately held and headquartered in Michigan. Criteria for judging is based in part on the winner's demonstrated intent and capacity to continue their respective growth based on one or more of the following:

  • Employee or sales growth
  • Exceptional entrepreneurial leadership
  • Sustainable competitive advantage, and
  • Other notable factors that showcase the Company's success.

Underwritten by The Accident Fund, Clark Hill PLC, Microsoft and National City Corporation, and supported by Media partners, Crain's Detroit Business, the Greater Lansing Business Monthly, MiBizWest/Southwest, MITECHNEWS.com, Traverse City Business News, WJR Radio, Detroit and Business Today WILX-TV10 Lansing-Jackson, Michigan Celebrates Small Business all contributed to the Michigan 50 competition.

Winners were selected by representatives of the Michigan Small Business & Technology Development Center, the Small Business Association of Michigan, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, the U.S. Small Business Administration-Michigan, the Michigan Certified Development Corporation and the Edward Lowe Foundation.

The 2007 Michigan Celebrates Small Business event will be held April 12, 2007 at the Kellogg Center in East Lansing. For information about the forthcoming 2007 "Michigan 50 Companies to Watch" program, visit http://edwardlowe.org/Michigan50 and www.michigancelebrates.biz, or call (800)362-5461.

About The Working Person's Store: Established in 1995, The Working Person's Store is dedicated to serving working people with a broad selection of work clothing, footwear, safety gear and accessories at its flagship store in Lakeville, Indiana, its Industrial Shoe Mobile Division and its award winning website located at www.workingperson.com.

The Working Persons Store presently represents leading work wear brands such as Carhartt Clothing, Dickies, Wrangler Jeans, Helly Hansen, Wigwam Socks, Under Armour, Thorlo Socks and Red Kap Uniforms. Also represented are a broad array of leading footwear brands such as Wolverine Work Boots and Shoes, Carolina Boots & Shoes, Timberland Pro Boots, Harley Davidson Boots, Bates Uniform Footwear, Chippewa Boots, Merrell Footwear, Danner Boots, Hush Puppy Slippers, Red Wing Shoes & Boots, Caterpillar Boots, Doc Martens Shoes, Georgia Boots, ECCO Shoes, Thorogood Boots, Skechers, Work Shoes, Carhartt Boots, Converse and many others.

 
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