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McClatchy-Tribune  07/14/2014 9:21 PM ET
Mohegan Tribe Announces Joint Venture With Long Island Company [The Hartford Courant :: ]

July 14--The Mohegan Tribe announced Monday it is teaming with a Long Island company that sells copy machines and other office equipment, along with related software and services for digital copying, scanning and color graphics.

The tribe has a joint venture with Leslie Digital Imaging of Jericho, N.Y., that creates a new company -- KÔTA in Uncasville. The tribe is providing financial backing and Leslie Digital Imaging is providing technical expertise to the new operation, which employs 10 people. KÔTA is a Mohegan term that means "close association."

This is the latest attempt at diversifying the tribe's business portfolio after announcements in recent months about the tribe investing in chain restaurants and a wood-pellet business.

KÔTA is an authorized dealer of equipment made by Canon, Toshiba, Samsung, Hewlett Packard and other companies said Bruce Manly, president of KÔTA. The company has five sales representatives and three service technicians, though the staff is expected to grow over five years.

Manly said he worked in the industry for 30 years, most recently as vice president of technology sales at Office Depot. He also has worked for IKON Office Solutions.

"It's always dynamic because the industry basically changes every six months," Manly said.

Mohegan Tribe chairman Kevin Brown, "Red Eagle," said in a statement, "We have also secured a team of talented account executives and experienced technicians who share an enthusiasm for this business segment. This opportunity is the fourth to be announced by the Tribe since May and reflects our Tribe's commitment to its non-gaming business diversification strategy and job creation in the region."

LDI founder and CEO Jerry Blaine said in a statement that KÔTA "will be able to execute on opportunities in government and commercial markets that are currently underserved."


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