Business

Novartis sells Holly Springs vaccine plant

October 27, 2014

(WRAL TechWire)

Novartis will sell its vaccines business, including its production plant in Holly Springs, to Australia-based CSL in a deal valued at $275 million. Basel, Switzerland-based Novartis received more than $40 million in state and local incentives to build the plant, which opened five years ago and employs 550 people.

Chiquita shareholders reject Fyffes merger

October 27, 2014

(The Charlotte Observer)

Analysts say Chiquita Brands International is almost certain to accept a buyout offer from privately-owned Brazilian companies Cutrale and Safra Group after Chiquita shareholders on Friday rejected a planned merger with Dublin-based Fyffes. Lured by almost $23 million in state and local incentives, Chiquita relocated from Cincinnati to Charlotte in 2011.

Beaufort tops Travel + Leisure list of favorite towns

October 27, 2014

(Carteret County News-Times)

Beaufort tops Travel + Leisure's 2014 list of America's favorite small towns – those with fewer than 50,000 residents – selected by the magazine's readers. The coastal town improved from No. 4 in 2013 and bested well-known towns including Aspen, Colo., and Myrtle Beach, S.C. 

Heavner's University Directories files for bankruptcy

October 27, 2014

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Chapel Hill-based publisher University Directories has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Owner James Heavner says his company is trying to avoid a hostile takeover by Greg Lindberg, president of Durham-based Eli Global. Meanwhile, another of Lindberg's companies has filed a lawsuit against University Directories and Heavner's other businesses over financial mismanagement.

Industry report shows furniture manufacturing returning to US

October 27, 2014

(High Point Enterprise)

A new report shows that offshoring is losing its appeal with American manufacturers as labor costs rise in Asia. Other reasons manufacturers are bringing jobs back the U.S. include access to skilled labor, lower transportation costs and ease of the business environment. The report notes that Mexico – which has lower manufacturing costs than China – is continuing to emerge as an industry leader.

Herbalife exec says company will be exonerated

October 27, 2014

(Winston-Salem Journal)

The CFO of Los Angeles-based Herbalife says he believes the company will be exonerated of accusations by hedge-fund manager Bill Ackman that it operates as a pyramid scheme. The company, which sells nutritional and weight-loss products, has hired about 300 employees at its new Winston-Salem manufacturing plant, where it eventually plans to employ 493 people.

Report: Expect more hospital mergers, partnerships

October 27, 2014

(Winston-Salem Journal)

A recent report shows that the trend of consolidation among health-care providers will continue. The report, released last week by Standard & Poor's Rating Services, says the need to reduce costs – largely due to shrinking reimbursement rates from federal and state governments – will drive more not-for-profit health-care systems into cost-saving partnerships and mergers. 

Retiring Wells Fargo exec reflects on time in Charlotte

October 27, 2014

(The Charlotte Observer)

Laura Schulte, who oversees about 2,700 branches as president of Wells Fargo's Eastern U.S. community-banking operations and will retire by year-end, says Charlotte must continue diversifying its economy beyond banking and should take a regional approach to growth. 

Kinston brewery celebrates five-year anniversary

October 27, 2014

(The Free Press, Kinston)

Hundreds of people visited Kinston on Saturday to celebrate Mother Earth Brewing Co.'s five-year anniversary. The company also began selling gin and whiskey Saturday.
Read about Kinston's up-and-coming restaurant scene in "Recipe for Recovery" from Business NC's October issue

Thomas Built Buses adding 236 jobs in High Point

October 24, 2014

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Thomas Built Buses confirmed Thursday it will add 236 jobs and invest $11.8 million in an expansion of its High Point plant, where it currently employs about 1,400 full- and part-time workers. The company will receive $372,098 in local incentives – it didn't request state incentives for the expansion.