Business

Transenterix slashes jobs after FDA rejects surgical robot

May 12, 2016

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

TransEnterix laid off about a third of the workforce at its Morrisville headquarters following the FDA's rejection last month of its SurgiBot system. The 10-year-old company is now shifting its focus to a second robot for general surgery, the ALF-X, which it acquired last year for $100 million. TransEnterix is seeking to develop and market an alternative to the da Vinci system, a surgical robot that has dominated the field for the last 15 years.

Novant ends talks to buy Savannah hospital

May 12, 2016

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Novant Health has ended negotiations to purchase the 622-bed Memorial Hospital in Savannah, Ga. Winston-Salem-based Novant planned to invest $295 million in improvements at the hospital, where it has has been involved since 2012 through a shared-services agreement. CEO Carl Armato said talks broke down when the Chatham County (Ga.) Hospital Authority became "directly involved."

Raleigh's Republic Wireless adds Samsung phones, new cellular network

May 12, 2016

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Republic Wireless will expand the line of products available to customers of its low-cost phone service to include Samsung Galaxy and Google Nexus. The company, a spinoff of Bandwidth.com, uses Wi-Fi as its primary network. Raleigh-based Republic is also adding a second cellular partner (it currently partners with Sprint), though the company won't say who it is. Bloomberg and other media identified the carrier as T-Mobile.

Duke Energy slips in customer satisfaction ratings

May 12, 2016

(The Charlotte Observer)

Duke Energy is losing favor with customers, with its satisfaction rating down to 70% compared with 72% last year. The Charlotte-based company ranked near the bottom among 26 publicly-owned U.S. utilities based on data compiled by the American Customer Satisfaction Index.

Report: Raleigh-Durham No. 4 place for startups

May 12, 2016

(WRAL.com)

The Raleigh-Durham area ranks No. 4 on a list of startup hubs, trailing only Boston, the San Francisco Bay area, and Denver. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce measured metro areas based on quality of life, education, types of startups and exits, and other criteria.

Desperate Raleigh homebuyers chase sellers

May 12, 2016

(WRAL.com)

The Raleigh housing market has become so desirable that prospective buyers are targeting homeowners in certain neighborhoods with flyers and messages offering to buy their homes, even though they aren't listed for sale. More than 10,000 new homes are slated for construction in the Triangle this year.

Jackson named president of Harnett Health

May 12, 2016

(The Fayetteville Observer)

Kevin Jackson, interim president of Harnett Health since October, has been named to the permanent position. Harnett Health includes 101-bed Betsy Johnson Hospital in Dunn and 50-bed Central Harnett Hospital in Lillington. Fayetteville-based Cape Fear Valley Health manages the system.

Irish drugmaker closing Charlotte plant; 390 layoffs expected

May 11, 2016

(The Charlotte Observer)

Qualitest Pharmaceuticals will close an 88,000-square-foot manufacturing plant in Charlotte as part of a corporate restructuring. In 2010, the company was acquired by Ireland-based Endo Pharmaceuticals, which saw its stock decline nearly 40% Friday after slashing 2016 sales estimates. The plant makes generic medications for drugs such as Xanax, Valium and Percocet.

Fujifilm opens biotech innovation center in Morrisville

May 11, 2016

(WRAL TechWire)

On Monday, Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies opened a new 62,000-square-foot manufacturing center in Morrisville, where it will develop and make recombinant pharmaceuticals including proteins, vaccines and monoclonal antibodies. The company is a unit of Tokyo-based Fujifilm Holdings.

TIGER21 networking group launches Charlotte chapter

May 11, 2016

(The Charlotte Observer)

A New York-based networking group for wealthy investors will open its first chapter in North Carolina. Charlotte will become the 23rd market for TIGER21, which charges members $30,000 a year to attend meetings and events focused on learning new investment strategies. Chris Cecil, president of money-management firm Biltmore Family Office, will be chairman of the Charlotte chapter. TIGER21's 400 members manage more than $40 billion in personal assets.