Quotable: “Power is nothing unless you turn it into influence” — National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice in “O” magazine.

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK — More bad news for North Carolina’s tech economy may come as soon as Wednesday.

That’s when Corning will announce its third-quarter earnings. And if the news is bad for the big fiber manufacturer, the earnings announcement could include news about the closing of a plant in either Concord or Wilmington.

According to the Morning Star in Wilmington, Corning already has cut hundreds of jobs in both plants. As many as another 1,000 will be lost if a plant is shut down, writes Bonnie Eksten.

Which plant will close? The Wilmington plant is older but also can make “a wider variety of product,” Eksten writes.

Not all the news in North Carolina is bad, however.

Site Selection magazine has selected North Carolina as having the best business climate for the third time in four years.

And this morning, the Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce disclosed that Vesper Lubrication Group will be moving its headquarters to Southport Business Park in Morrisville. The company, which designs and builds engineered lubrication systems, is a subsidiary of Pennsylvania-based Vesper Corporation and is leaving its current location in Vermont. The move means relocation of five to 10 current employees and the hiring of up to 35 people in the Triangle once the move takes place, according to the Chamber’s Wake County Economic Development Program

Ken Atkins, who heads the program, also said he expects the area to land other relocation projects in the near future. “Wake County is in the running for several substantial projects,” he said.

The Cisco factor?

If you own Cisco Systems stock and aren’t pleased with how the company has performed, what about stock in Lucent, Nortel and JDS Uniphase?

That’s the contrast drawn by an E-Commerce Times (link below) which has numerous positive things to say about the networking giant.

“Yes, this company is worth much less than it once was,” an equity analyst tells E-Commerce Times. “But the public market is starkly distinguishing Cisco from its competitors. Investors say Cisco is worth $81.1 billion, while Lucent is worth $2.4 billion, Nortel $3.1 billion and JDS Uniphase $3.1 billion.”

Touche.

“The public market, measured by total market value or price for a dollar of sales, is saying that Cisco is a much better networking company than its competitors. It can also be an example for how valuable good stewardship can be to a tech company’s survival.”
Cisco Systems, which will announce its third-quarter earnings in a conference call on Nov. 6, gets some positive press from E-Commerce Times.

Here’s the link: www.newsfactor.com/perl/story/19574.html

Dell sticks with EMC; also, a big SQL

Good news for EMC’s plant in Apex.

Dell announced Monday that EMC will continue to manufacture CLARiiON storage systems at EMC’s plants in Apex and also in Ireland. In one year of working with EMC to build storage systems, more than 1,500 customers have made purchases, Dell said. Among the buyers are Mercedes, Cox Communications, The Bombay Company and the US Military Academy at West Point. Dell also announced a new product, the EMC CX200 storage system, which it will build in Texas and in two plants overseas.

EMC has a huge 400,000-square foot facility just south of Apex and employs some 300 people.

This morning, EMC and Microsoft announced that they have teamed up to build the “largest Microsoft SQL Server” storage area network yet — a 45-terabyte monster which included a simulated 10-terabyte human genomics database.

EMC stock was up 20 cents, to $5, in midday trading.

Rick Smith is managing editor of Local Tech Wire.