Business

NC lifts ban on drinking water near coal-ash ponds

March 9, 2016

(The Charlotte Observer)

State Health officials told hundreds of residents living near Duke Energy's coal-ash ponds that their well water is fine, lifting an advisory issued nearly a year ago when high levels of contaminants were discovered. The ban was lifted after the state determined previous groundwater standards were too stringent. Some residents, who have been drinking bottled water for nearly a year, aren't convinced the water is safe. "They've already scared people, and it's hard to unscare scared people," said Tad Helmstetler, Rowan County's environmental health manager.

Raleigh's Valencell closes on $11M financing

March 9, 2016

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Valencell, which develops technology for wearable electronics, raised $11 million in a round of financing led by GII Tech, a venture fund started by Gulf Islamic Investments of the United Arab Emirates. The money will be used for R&D and business development, CEO Michael Dering said in a statement. Meanwhile, Fitbit on Tuesday filed a counterclaim to Valencell's patent infringement lawsuit against the company.

Vidant Health, ECU to align programs

March 9, 2016

(The Daily Reflector)

Vidant Health and ECU's Brody School of Medicine will begin integrating patient care operations, clinical operations and clinical research activities throughout eastern North Carolina. The goal is to create a new, national model for providing rural health care while improving care and expanding educational opportunities for future doctors.

Supreme Court rejects BB&T, others in tax case

March 9, 2016

(The Charlotte Observer)

The U.S. Supreme Court rejected three separate appeals by Bank of New York Mellon, AIG and a unit of BB&T. The companies were seeking to overturn previous rulings that invalidated a tax-avoidance strategy developed by Barclays. Winston-Salem-based BB&T was trying to recoup $600 million from the IRS.

Allegiant adds flight from Asheville to Jacksonville

March 9, 2016

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Low-cost carrier Allegiant announced a new route between Asheville and Jacksonville, Fla. The flight will be available on Mondays and Fridays from May 27 to Aug. 15.

Charles & Colvard sheds home party business

March 9, 2016

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Morrisville gemstone maker Charles & Colvard said it has sold Lulu Avenue, its home party business, to Yanbal USA for $500,000. Yanbal USA is a division of Yanbal International, a Lima, Peru-based beauty products company. The home party business accounted for 12% of C&C's sales in the fourth quarter.

Pilots say American Airlines needs a culture change

March 8, 2016

(The Charlotte Observer)

The American Airlines' pilots union sent a letter to CEO Doug Parker describing a "toxic culture" between managers and employees. The pilots complained of payroll and scheduling problems and said the carrier's product is inferior to that of rival Delta Air Lines. The Fort Worth, Texas-based airline operates about 90% of daily flights out of Charlotte.

BioCryst drug shows promise as Zika treatment

March 8, 2016

(WRAL TechWire)

BioCryst Pharmaceuticals said a preclinical study of its experimental antiviral drug showed promising results in combatting the Zika virus in mice.
Also: Here's why BioCryst stock is spiking today

Report fuels speculation of BAT acquistion

March 8, 2016

(Winston-Salem Journal)

A London newspaper reported that British American Tobacco could be preparing for an acquisition, triggering speculation that the tobacco company could be planning a bid for Imperial Brands, which operates ITG Brands in Greensboro, or a majority ownership in Reynolds American. BAT owns 42% of Reynolds.

Durham data-management firm raises $7.5M

March 8, 2016

(WRAL TechWire)

Zaloni Partners raised $7.5 million in a financing led by Sierra Ventures that included Baird Capital. The Durham-based company provides data lake management software and services. A data lake is a repository for large quantities of data.