Creative Edge Receives $125,000 Grant

The Fairfield Ledger - Page 3 - Monday, August 19, 2002

By MATT MULLENNEAUX
Ledger staff writer

stone floor map of a national park
This portion of a stone floor map of a national park is the latest project for Creative Edge, located in Fairfield's Industrial Park. The project is for a visitors center in West Virginia, and will be shipped out this month. The company recently received a $125,000 Rural Economic Development Investment Inc. loan.

This started a yearlong process that ended in the final closing on May 29.

Losing control of the company, which he started in 1989 with fellow Fairfield businessman Harry Aalto, was particularly traumatic for Belilove.

"It was partly my mistake to get those people involved," Belilove admitted.

Now business is back as usual, and with the loan subsidy, the company is poised to nearly double its staff. The Rural Economic loan is administered by the Area 15 planning council, for the purpose of creating and retaining jobs. The company currently has 35 employees, and will add another 29 jobs.■

Creative Edge owner Jim Belilove feels vindicated.

After being unwillingly bought out by investors three years ago, he has now regained control of his successful Fairfield company, which has received a new Rural Economic Development Investment Inc. loan of $125,000.

Creative Edge, located in Industrial Park, specializes in fabricated specialty floors, with intricate designs carved with water-jet technology into granite, marble, carpet, linoleum, rubber, vinyl and metals. The company has done a variety of projects for Disneyland, most notably the main entrance floor for Disneyworld and Euro Disney, as well as the lobby of Disney's California Adventure. The most current Creative Edge project is a 60-foot by 60-foot map of a national park that will be on display in a Visitors Center near Beckley, W.Va.

As a result of a venture capital project gone wrong, Creative Edge was purchased by Concept Flooring Group, of Winneconne, Wis. through an investment from the Facilitator Capitol Fund in 1999. Two years later the company was struggling, and the former partners called Belilove and asked him to buy the company back.

"They called me back, and they knew they weren’t handling it right," he said. "It just didn't work. We are delighted to be back in business as the original team."