Regional

Across the state

What's going on in each region

Jump directly to: Western | Charlotte | Triad | Triangle | Eastern

Western

Western NC sees more international tourists

August 31, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Asheville business owners are noticing an uptick in the number of international tourists. About 1.2 million international travelers visited the state in 2013, the latest year statistics are available, but tourism officials expect a significant increase in 2014 and 2015.

Henderson County businesses concerned over power lines

August 31, 2015

(Hendersonville Times-News)

Summer camps and apple orchards are among Henderson County businesses concerned over the impact of transmission lines Duke Energy plans to install to connect a new Asheville power plant to a substation in South Carolina.

Asheville raises fines for Airbnb rentals

August 27, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Asheville City Council voted to increase fines for illegal vacation rentals from $100 to $500 a day. Short-term rentals such as those offered through the Airbnb website are illegal in most parts of the city. Council members are concerned that investors could buy up real estate and essentially turn residential areas into hotel districts.

Meeting set for Duke power line proposal in western NC

August 26, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

The N.C. Utilities Commission public staff and western N.C. residents will meet with representatives from Duke Energy in Flat Rock on Sept. 3 to discuss the utility's plan to add transmission lines for a new natural-gas fired power plant in Asheville. Residents have voiced concern over the power lines obstructing views and affecting property values.

Harrah's to open new Western NC casino in September

August 17, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River Casino & Hotel in Murphy is scheduled to open Sept. 28. The resort, which was built over the last two years and cost $110 million, is expected to employ about 900 people, according to the Cherokee Nation.

Investor says Asheville Savings Bank should put itself up for sale

August 6, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

New York-based Firefly Value Partners is asking ASB Bancorp, parent company of Asheville Savings Bank, to begin the process of selling the bank. The New York-based investor, which owns a 9.6% stake in ASB, says the company is too small to earn "adequate returns."

Beer industry pumps millions into Buncombe economy

August 5, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Western N.C. is home to more than 40 breweries, from small startups to New Belgium's East Coast brewery in West Asheville, where the company is investing nearly $140 million. The beer industry has become part of Asheville's brand, according to David Gantt, chairman of the Buncombe County Commission.

Leader of Ponzi scheme ordered to help pay $76M

August 4, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Keith Simmons and a California-based insurance broker were ordered to pay $76 million in civil penalties related to a Ponzi scheme Simmons operated in Ashe County. Through his companies, Black Diamond Capital Solutions and High South Realty, Simmons bilked more than 400 people out of more than $40 million. He was sentenced to 40 years in prison in 2012.
Related: "Money for nothing," August 2012

Fletcher kayak-maker lays off 25 as result of merger

August 3, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Almost half the employees of Fletcher-based Legacy Paddlesports lost their jobs last week as the company announced it was merging with Hurricane Kayaks of Warsaw. Legacy, which recently has experienced slumping sales, invested $4.5 million in the Henderson County plant after moving headquarters from Greensboro in 2012 ("Back paddle," July 2013).

Asheville petition to restrict chain stores gains momentum

July 27, 2015

(Mountain Xpress)

An online petition calling for the city of Asheville to regulate or put a moratorium on corporate chain stores in the downtown area collected 2,000 signatures within a week. A local salon owner started the petition after retailer Anthropologie expressed interest in opening a store there.

Asheville's low wages linked to GDP

July 20, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Workers in the Asheville area earn less than people living in other regions because its employers don't produce "high-value" products, local economists say.

Asheville's Moogfest moving to Durham in 2016

July 15, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Moogfest, the music and technology festival held in downtown Asheville since 2008, will move to Durham in 2016, event organizers said Tuesday. "That city is exploding with technology, innovation, startups, and it just makes sense for Moogfest to be there," Emmy Parker, creative director of Moog Music, said.

Asheville has $1B in commercial projects in pipeline

July 13, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Commercial real-estate developers have about $1 billion of projects planned for the Asheville area over the next five years, including hotels, retail space, offices and apartments.

Morganton plant sold; most jobs retained

July 13, 2015

(The News Herald, Morganton)

Louisville, Ky.-based Sypris Solutions has sold its Morganton manufacturing plant to Meritor, its largest customer, for $14.5 million. Meritor offered jobs to 117 of 140 workers who were employed at the plant, which makes components for commercial and industrial vehicles.

GE Aviation opens West Jefferson plant, touts importance of EXIM Bank

July 10, 2015

(StarNews, Wilmington)

While urging Congress to restart the federal Export Import Bank, GE Aviation held a grand opening of its West Jefferson machining factory on Thursday. The company has hired 45 workers and plans to hire an additional 60 by 2017 at the $65 million plant. The Ashe County plant is part of GE's previously announced statewide expansion that will account for more than 240 new jobs.

Asheville hotel sells for $33 million

July 10, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Summit Hotel Properties paid about $33 million for the 115-room Hotel Indigo in downtown Asheville. The seller was Pennsylvania-based Hospitality Lodging Investors. Austin, Texas-based Summit plans to invest about $400,000 in capital improvements over the next year.

Buncombe adding fewer middle-class jobs

July 9, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Asheville and Buncombe County added fewer middle-class jobs over the last five years when compared with jobs in the highest and lowest wage ranges, according to a new report. Nearby Henderson County experienced identical job growth across all three wage ranges.

Manufacturer adding 86 jobs in Shelby

July 2, 2015

(The Shelby Star)

Metal Works Manufacturing Co. will invest $3.9 million and add 86 jobs within the next three years. If it meets job-creation targets, the company will be eligible for $1.3 million in state incentives over 12 years.

Carpet manufacturer expanding in Rutherford County

June 30, 2015

(RC Catalyst)

White Oak Carpet Mills will add 40 jobs at its carpet- and rug-manufacturing operations in Rutherford County. The company will invest more than $4.1 million over three years in Spindale, where it has being making rugs for 16 years. White Oak is a division of Wichita, Kansas-based CAP Carpet.

Hi-Wire Brewing set to unveil new Asheville brewery

June 29, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Hi-Wire Brewing will open its new, $3 million brewery near Asheville's Biltmore Village on July 25. The new facility will allow the beer company to boost annual production from 5,000-6,000 barrels to 55,000 barrels.

Charlotte

Group says BofA shareholders should split CEO, chairman roles

August 31, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

CtW Investment Group said Friday that Bank of America shareholders should vote against bylaw changes that allowed CEO Brian Moynihan to become chairman. CtW is an advocate for union-affiliated pension funds. The Charlotte-based bank is holding a special meeting Sept. 22 for shareholders to vote on the issue.

Bissell plans 10-story spec building in Charlotte's Ballantyne

August 28, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

The Bissell Corporation plans to build a 10-story, 287,500-square-foot office building in Charlotte's Ballantyne area, which is almost 95% occupied. Construction could start as early as next week and should be complete by November 2016. A 150-room hotel is also planned.

Belk would pay $80 million fee if it backs out of Sycamore deal

August 28, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Belk, which agreed to be bought by New York's Sycamore Partners for $3 billion, would have to pay $80 million if the Charlotte-based department store chain backs out of the deal. Sycamore would owe Belk $165 million if it terminates the contract, securities filings show.

Vacuum manufacturer adding 200 jobs in Charlotte

August 26, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

TTI Floor Care North America, the maker of Hoover, Dirt Devil and Oreck vacuum cleaners, will invest $5 million in a marketing and technology center in Charlotte, creating 200 jobs over the next two years. Average annual salary will be more than $103,000. The Cleveland, Ohio-based company is a subsidiary of Hong Kong-based Techtronic Industries, whose products include power tools, hedge trimmers and pressure washers.

Charlotte snags corporate HQ from Louisiana

August 26, 2015

Albermarle Corporation, a Louisiana-based chemical manufacturer with a market value of $4.9 billion, is moving its headquarters to Charlotte from Baton Rouge, La. The deal will add 120 new jobs by 2016 for Charlotte, which is becoming a magnet for corporate headquarters. Pay will average more than $160,000 annually.

Charlotte to spend $48M for new airport access road

August 26, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Charlotte City Council approved a plan that will expand the access road in front of Charlotte Douglas International Airport to eight lanes for arrivals and eight for departures. The $48 million project also includes pedestrian tunnels connecting the terminal to parking decks.

Sycamore Partners buys Belk for $3 billion

August 25, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Charlotte-based Belk, the nation's largest family-owned department store chain, agreed to be bought by New York-based private equity firm Sycamore Partners for $3 billion, including the company’s debt. While the company told employees no major changes are planned, analysts say the new owners will probably close stores and cut jobs to improve profitability. Belk's headquarters will stay in Charlotte, and Tim Belk will remain chief executive officer. The deal is expected to close in the fourth quarter this year, pending regulatory approval.  


Read more here: http://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/business/article32006829.html#storylink=cpy

Investors in Pittenger's land company question tactics

August 24, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Some investors in U.S. Rep. Robert Pittenger's real-estate company, which has been run by his wife Suzanne since he was elected to Congress in 2012, expressed concern over the slow pace of land sales and lack of transparency with the company's financial dealings. Pittenger said earlier this month the FBI is investigating the Charlotte company.

BofA directors get raises

August 21, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Eleven out of 13 members of Bank of America's board of directors gave themselves raises of about $36,000, according to a June securities filing. The board's lowest-paid member now earns almost $280,000 a year. A bank spokesman said most board members had not received raises since 2006. CEO and chairman Brian Moynihan does not receive any compensation for sitting on the board.

Toll lane opponents not ready to give up the fight

August 21, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Opponents of toll lanes on Interstate 77 from Charlotte to Mooresville say legislative battles will continue into 2016. A Charlotte transportation-planning group voted Wednesday to endorse the project, but Mecklenburg County Commissioner Jim Puckett says he will continue efforts to convince lawmakers to scrap plans for the express lanes.

Wells Fargo cuts investment-banking jobs

August 21, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Fewer than 10 investment bankers at Wells Fargo Securities were laid off Thursday. It was unclear how many of the affected workers were in New York and how many were in Charlotte, where the unit employed about 2,000 people as recently as 2013. The San Francisco-based bank did not give a specific reason for the layoffs.

Duke Energy could use drones to improve response time in storms

August 20, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Duke Energy is testing the use of unmanned aerial vehicles that could be used to inspect power lines and solar farms after storms and outages. The Federal Aviation Administration awarded the Charlotte-based utility an exemption to fly the drones in June.

SunTrust seeks to gain market share in Charlotte

August 20, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

SunTrust Banks is looking to increase its market share in the Queen City, according to Jenna Kelly, who has been Charlotte region president since May. Kelly says the Atlanta-based bank is adding to its 500 employees in Charlotte, where it opened a regional headquarters at SouthPark in February.

Strong appliance sales boost Lowe's 2Q revenue

August 19, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Home-improvement retailer Lowe's reported revenue of $17.35 billion for the second quarter that ended July 31, compared with $16.6 billion a year ago. The Mooresville-based company has benefited from an improved housing market: The U.S. Commerce Department said this week that construction of single-family homes has reached its highest level since December 2007.

Mann + Hummel to buy Gastonia's Affinia Group

August 18, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Affinia Group, an automotive-parts supplier based in Gastonia, will be acquired by Germany-based Mann + Hummel for $513 million, according to a regulatory filing. The privately held company will also take on Affinia's debt, which Reuters reports was $822 million as of June 30. Affinia employs 1,271 people in Gaston County.

Belk sale spurs emotions of customers with long ties to the department-store group

August 14, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

The expected sale of Belk to New York private equity firm Sycamore Partners would remove local ownership of a department-store chain that has had a huge impact on North Carolina. Sycamore is devising an offer of up to $3.5 billion for Belk, according to several reports

 

Swisher Hygiene selling U.S. businesses for $40 million

August 14, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Charlotte-based Swisher Hygiene, a Charlotte-based public company, said will sell its U.S. operations to Minnesota-based Ecolab for $40 million. Earlier this week Swisher sold its Canadian business. Shares of Swisher, a sanitation company, more than doubled to $1.30.

Premier buys software company for $65 million

August 13, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Charlotte-based Premier Inc. purchased software developer Healthcare Insights of Libertyville, Ill. for $65 million. Premier provides hospitals and health care systems with analytics and other services.

Chinese asset manager financing Charlotte skyscraper

August 10, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

A Chinese asset management company is helping finance downtown Charlotte's newest office tower, which is being developed by Portman Holdings.

 

Charlotte real-estate investment company delays IPO

August 10, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Real estate investment firm RiverBanc Mulitfamily Investors of Charlotte is delaying its initial public offering.


Read more here: http://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/business/article30407109.html#storylink=cpy

Triad

Novant Health posts increase in excess income

August 31, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Novant Health reported excess income of $125 million for the first half of 2015, a 23% increase compared with the same period a year ago. The Winston-Salem-based health care system employs 25,000 people across four states.

High Point group courts Trader Joe's

August 28, 2015

(High Point Enterprise)

A group of High Point residents is urging Monrovia, Calif.-based grocery retailer Trader Joe's to open a store in the city. Bring Trader Joe's to High Point's Facebook page has more than 6,000 followers. The company's only Triad location is in Winston-Salem; plans for a Greensboro store were canceled after local residents protested the rezoning for the proposed site.

Triad manufacturers look to high schools to recruit workers

August 27, 2015

(The Times News, Burlington)

Seven Triad area employers, including GKN Driveline, are launching an apprenticeship program for high school students in an effort to close the skills gap facing the advanced manufacturing industry.

High Point truck-body manufacturer plans to expand

August 26, 2015

(High Point Enterprise)

Mickey Truck Bodies has bought the former Pearson furniture plant in High Point and plans to expand. Founded in 1904, the company makes truck bodies and trailers for beverage distributors and emergency vehicles and employs 328, including 275 in North Carolina. The Pearson plant was closed in 2014.

Krispy Kreme adding 10 shops in Myanmar

August 26, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Krispy Kreme Doughnuts will become one of the first western brands to enter Myanmar, formerly Burma, when it adds 10 shops there through a franchisee agreement. The Winston-Salem company has more than 1,000 locations, including 700 international shops.

Tiger Woods helps drive huge ratings for Greensboro tournament

August 25, 2015

(The News & Record, Greensboro)

With Tiger Woods in contention, Greensboro's Wyndham Championship on Sunday drew the biggest TV ratings for a nonmajor golf tournament in more than two years. Woods was two shots off the lead when the final round started on Sunday, but finished tied for 10th place. Charlotte native Davis Love III won by one stroke.

BB&T to slow rate of acquisitions

August 24, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

BB&T says it plans to take a break from acquisitions after announcing plans to buy National Penn Bancshares for $1.8 billion.The deal will give the Winston-Salem-based bank nearly $220 billion in assets; banks with more than $250 billion face stricter regulatory requirements. CEO Kelly King says the bank has begun planning for the time when it reaches that threshold.

Targacept sale complete

August 24, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

San Francisco-based Catalyst Biosciences has completed its purchase of Targacept. The drug developer will shut down its Winston-Salem operations, where three years ago it employed as many as 144 workers.

Woods boosts attendance at Greensboro's Wyndham

August 21, 2015

(News & Record, Greensboro)

Tiger Woods' inaugural appearance at the Wyndham Championship in Greensboro is attracting large crowds, with an estimated 24,000 people attending on Thursday. Free admissions – offered to veterans, teachers and others – have almost tripled. The golf tournament plans to cap attendance between 30,000 and 32,000 per day this weekend. 

Winston-Salem-based Targacept's sale to Catalyst nears completion

August 20, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Shareholders of Targacept approved the sale of the company to San Francisco-based Catalyst Biosciences. The drug-development company once employed 144 people in Winston-Salem; few of its 10 remaining employees are expected to work for Catalyst after the deal closes, which could be as soon as Thursday.

Candy-maker begins production in Mebane

August 19, 2015

(The Times-News, Burlington)

Morinaga has begun production at its candy factory in Mebane. The Japanese company, which makes Hi-Chew, a candy that gained popularity in Asian markets and can now be found in convenience and grocery stores across the U.S., is investing more than $48 million in the plant and plans to hire 90 workers by 2018.

Excess revenue increases more than 36% at Cone Health

August 19, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Greensboro-based Cone Health reported excess revenue – the same as profit for a nonprofit organization – of $57 million, an increase of 36.6%.

BB&T to acquire National Penn Bancshares

August 18, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Two weeks after completing its acquisition of Susquehanna Bancshares, BB&T said it will purchase National Penn Banchshares, based in Allentown, Pa., in a cash and stock deal valued at about $1.8 billion. National Penn has assets of $9.6 billion and 124 offices in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Maryland.

Woods to play Wyndham for 1st time

August 18, 2015

(News & Record, Greensboro)

Tiger Woods will play in Greensboro's Wyndham Championship for the first time. The first round of the golf tournament, held at Sedgefield Country Club, begins Thursday.

Two developers interested in Winston-Salem City Center parking deck.

August 14, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Grubb Properties of Charlotte and Tight Line Partners of Winston-Salem have shown interest in acquiring a 730-space parking deck from the city of Winston-Salem, a city official said. The property is expected to sell for about $2 million. Tight Line is run by veteran Triad developer John Reece, while Clay Grubb heads Grubb Properties.

 

Developer wants city to help with renovations

August 13, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

 

Developer Mike Coe wants the city of Winston-Salem to help renovate the downtown Pepper Building for stores and 54 apartments. 

HAECO eager to expand, waiting on permits

August 7, 2015

(News & Record, Greensboro)

HAECO Americas, formerly Timco Aviation, is awaiting state and federal permits to build a new, 180,000-square-foot hangar near Piedmont Triad International Airport. The company plans to add 400 jobs to its existing 1,600 when the expansion is complete.

ZeekRewards receiver releases another $89M

August 7, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Ken Bell, the court-appointed receiver in the ZeekRewards.com case, issued 112,734 checks totaling $89.2 million to victims of the Lexington-based Ponzi scheme, bringing total distributions to $246.05 million. Another distribution is planned for Oct. 31.

High Point groups agree on merger

August 6, 2015

(High Point Enterprise)

Members of the High Point Chamber and High Point Partners voted unanimously to merge into one economic-development group. Business High Point has secured pledges from 22 businesses that have agreed to contribute $20,000 annually to the group.

GKN, Nypro consider expansions in Alamance County

August 4, 2015

(The Times-News, Burlington)

Alamance County commissioners unanimously approved incentives for GKN Driveline to build a $6.3 million distribution center to support its three regional plants. The 134,000-square-foot facility would support 13 new jobs with an average annual salary of $55,000. Commissioners also approved incentives for manufacturer Nypro to create 75 jobs at a new warehouse facility.

Triangle

Lenovo's Jay Parker resigns

August 28, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Jay Parker, who became senior vice president of Lenovo's enterprise business in March, has resigned. Parker joined Lenovo in 2007 and was previously president of North American operations. The No.1 PC-maker's North American headquarters are in Morrisville. The company announced this month it was laying off 3,200 workers worldwide, including 230 in the Triangle.

Raleigh's Ziptronix acquired for $39M

August 28, 2015

(WRAL TechWire)

Tessera Technologies, a Silicon Valley semiconductor company, paid $39 million for Raleigh-based Ziptronix, a company spun out of RTI International in 2000.

Danish drugmaker Novo Nordisk adding 691 jobs near Clayton

August 27, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Novo Nordisk will invest up to $1.7 million and add nearly 700 jobs at a new Johnston County plant. The drugmaker, which also considered its headquarters country of Denmark for the expansion, already employs 719 people in Clayton. The new plant will make ingredients for diabetes products. Jobs will pay an average annual salary of $68,420.

Durham digital printing company raises $25M

August 27, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Spoonflower plans to add at least 50 new employees after raising $25 million from investors, including Boston-based North Bridge Growth Equity and Durham's Bull City Venture Partners. The company, which had revenue of $15.3 million in 2014, allows customers to create and order custom-designed fabrics, wallpaper and gift wrap through its website.

Raleigh's Red Hat ranked No. 26 on list of innovators

August 26, 2015

(WRAL TechWire)

Raleigh-based Red Hat was named to Forbes magazine's "World's Most Innovative Companies" list for the third time. The Raleigh-based software company ranked No. 26; California-based automaker Tesla Motors was No. 1.

Durham's Hatteras Venture Partners raises $90 million

August 25, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Hatteras Venture Partners has raised over $90 million of a $150 million goal for its fifth fund. The Durham-based venture capital firm invests in seed- and early-stage life-sciences companies. Hatteras, whose partners include former Glaxo CEO Robert Ingram and former UNC Chapel Hill chancellor Holden Thorp, has about $350 million under management.

Johnston County courts major economic-development project

August 25, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Johnston County commissioners are expected to announce Wednesday an economic-development project that will create several hundred jobs. The county's incentive package includes the purchase of 95 acres of land that would be leased back to the company, whose identity will be revealed Wednesday.

Report released on Durham-Orange light-rail project

August 25, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

A new report details ridership projections and other specifics about the proposed 17-mile light-rail line in Durham and Orange counties. The light-rail line, which would run from UNC Hospitals to Duke Medical Center, is expected to cost as much as $1.6 billion.

Glaxo sells multiple sclerosis drug to Novartis for $1B

August 24, 2015

(WRAL TechWire)

Novartis will pay $1 billion plus royalties for the rights to GlaxoSmithKline's experimental treatment for multiple sclerosis. GSK, which employs several thousand people in the Triangle, purchased Novartis' vaccines business earlier this year, while Novartis acquired GSK's oncology unit.

Raleigh's Sprout Pharmaceuticals is sold for $1 billion

August 21, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Valeant Pharmaceuticals will pay about $1 billion for Raleigh-based Sprout Pharmaceuticals, which this week received FDA approval for Addyi, a treatment for women with low sex drive. In April, Canada-based Valeant acquired Raleigh's Salix Pharmaceuticals for $11.1 billion. Sprout will remain headquartered in Raleigh.

RTP's AgBiome raises $34.5M

August 20, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

AgBiome raised $34.5 million in venture-capital funding; investors included Syngenta Ventures and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The Research Triangle Park-based company is developing a natural fungicide that can be used by organic farmers. AgBiome, which employs 50 people, previously raised $17.5 million.

Chapel Hill drugmaker receives fast-track status for pneumonia treatment

August 20, 2015

(WRAL TechWire)

Chapel Hill-based Cempra was granted fast-track designation from the FDA for its antibiotic treatment for community-acquired bacterial pneumonia, one of the most common infectious diseases. Cempra's stock has increase more than sixfold since the company went public in 2012 and has more than tripled over the last year (Top 75 Public Companies, August).

Raleigh's Sprout to add sales positions to market new drug

August 20, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Sprout Pharmaceuticals says it will grow its workforce from 34 employees to more than 200 now that the FDA has granted approval for its female libido drug. Addyi will be available to women who have prescriptions for the drug by Oct. 17.

Raleigh drugmaker gains FDA approval for female libido pill

August 19, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

The FDA gave approval on Tuesday for Addyi, Sprout Pharmaceuticals' drug for women with low sex drive. Raleigh-based Sprout expects to quadruple its workforce of 31, adding sales reps to promote the pill. Sprout has raised $100 million from private investors.

Chatham County approves two-year ban on fracking

August 19, 2015

(The Herald-Sun, Durham)

Chatham County commissioners approved a two-year moratorium on hydraulic fracturing. Chairman Jim Crawford said the practice poses a threat to the agriculture and agribusiness industries, which account for 38% of the county's income.

Apex earns top spot on Money magazine list

August 18, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Apex, in western Wake County, is the best place to live in among U.S. towns with populations of 50,000 or less, according to Money magazine. The magazine cited the town's affordable housing, proximity to universities and Research Triangle Park and "small-town charm."

GSK reopens Zebulon plant after brief shutdown

August 18, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

GlaxoSmithKline reopened its Zebulon plant on Monday after a six-day shutdown. The United Kindgom-based drugmaker had temporarily closed the plant after discovering bacteria that can cause Legionnaires' disease in two of its cooling towers.

Triangle tech, energy companies reveal 'wish list' for new hires

August 18, 2015

(WRAL TechWire)

Triangle technology and energy companies plan to hire up to 3,000 workers over the next five years, according to the results of a recent survey by RTI International. Two-thirds of the companies surveyed will seek candidates with engineering and technology degrees, though 25% are also looking for workers with business and management degrees.

Lenovo cutting 230 white-collar jobs in Triangle locations

August 14, 2015

(WRAL.com)

Lenovo, the world’s biggest PC manufacturer, is slashing 3,200 white-collar jobs, including about 230 in the Triangle in a cost-cutting move. The company operates its global executive headquarters in Morrisville and employs about 3,200 in the region. Its profits declined 51% to $105 million in the most recent quarter.

 

Huge increase in donations cited at UNC Chapel Hill

August 14, 2015

(The News and Observer)

UNC Chapel Hill landed $447 million in donations and commitments in the fiscal year that ended June 30 – a 44% increase from a year earlier. The previous record was $342.8 million in 2008. The most recent year’s total included a $100 million pledge from Wilmington businessman Fred Eshelman for the UNC pharmacy school.

Eastern

'A Chef's Life' begins new season on PBS

August 31, 2015

(Kinston Free Press)

"A Chef's Life," the award-winning PBS series featuring Kinston chef Vivian Howard ("Recipe for recovery," October 2014), begins airing its third season on Thursday. Filming for season four is underway, though Howard, who runs two restaurants with husband Ben Knight, says it will likely be the last for the popular documentary.

Mayne Pharma plans $65M expansion, 110 jobs in Greenville

August 28, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Mayne Pharma plans to invest $65 million in a manufacturing plant and add 110 jobs to its existing 350 in Greenville. Average annual salary will be $60,000. The Australian drugmaker acquired Greenville-based Metrics in 2012. Mayne's products include treatments for acne, fungal infections and bacterial infections. The new plant will also provide contract-manufacturing services.

Wilmington's Live Oak Bank adds new lending niche

August 28, 2015

(Greater Wilmington Business Journal)

Live Oak Bank, named the best bank to work for by American Banker magazine, will begin offering SBA loans to independent insurance agents. The Wilmington-based lender raised about $82 million in its public debut in July.

SBI confirms investigation of former CFCC president

August 26, 2015

(Greater Wilmington Business Journal)

The State Bureau of Investigation confirmed it is investigating former Cape Fear Community College president Ted Spring. A state auditor's report released in July showed that Spring gave raises and promotions without approval of the board of trustees and used college funds for personal expenses. Spring resigned in January but has since asked to be reinstated.

Building-products company adding 72 manufacturing jobs in Kinston

August 25, 2015

(WRAL.com)

Associated Materials, an Ohio-based company that makes vinyl windows, siding and fencing, will invest $4.5 million and add 72 jobs in a plant expansion in Kinston. The company's brands include Alpine Windows, Ultraguard and Revere.

Apparel company adds 50 jobs in Fayetteville

August 24, 2015

(The Fayetteville Observer)

Delta Apparel has added about 50 jobs at its apparel plant in Fayetteville. The Greenville, S.C.-based company moved distribution operations of its Salt Life brand products from Phenix City, Ala. The company's Soffe sporting-goods division employs about 450 people in Fayetteville.

Vertex Rail anticipates October certification

August 24, 2015

(Greater Wilmington Business Journal)

Vertex Railcar has completed its first round of hiring and expects to receive certification from the Association of American Railroads in October. Vertex said last November it plans to create 1,300 jobs at a railcar-manufacturing plant in Wilmington.

$12M redevelopment project planned for downtown Wilson

August 24, 2015

(The Wilson Times)

Officials in Wilson hope the $12 million rehabilitation of a 64,000-square-foot former tobacco warehouse will be a catalyst for downtown development. Waukeshaw Development of Petersburg, Va., will convert the Hi Dollar warehouse into 88 loft apartments, plus offer retail and office space.

Enviva says port terminal will be ready by spring

August 21, 2015

(Greater Wilmington Business Journal)

Enviva says its wood-pellet manufacturing plant in Sampson County and its storage-dome facility at the Port of Wilmington are expected to be complete by early 2016. The Bethesda, Md.-based company says the two facilities will create about 300 jobs.

Kentucky company buys Columbus County railroad

August 19, 2015

(The Fayetteville Observer)

Kentucky-based R.J. Corman Railroad Co. is the new owner of Carolina Southern Railroad, which runs through Columbus County in southeastern N.C. and Horry and Marion counties in South Carolina. The railroad has been idle since 2011, when several bridges failed to pass inspection. Local leaders helped organize the $13.9 million sale.

Construction of Bonner Bridge replacement could begin next spring

August 19, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

The Southern Environmental Law Center has dropped lawsuits that have held up construction of a replacement for the Bonner Bridge in the Outer Banks. Construction of a new bridge across the Oregon Inlet is expected to begin next spring and will take three years.

A look at nCino's new Wilmington office

August 18, 2015

(Port City Daily)

Wilmington-based banking software company nCino recently moved its 145 employees into a new 40,000-square-foot office. Here's a peek inside their new space, which offers standing work stations, comfy conference rooms and a "fun room" with pool table and putting green.

Wilmington's Chiltern to buy Pennsylvania-based CRO

August 7, 2015

(WRAL TechWire)

Chiltern, a contract-research organization based in Wilmington and London, will acquire King of Prussia, Pa.-based Theorem Clinical Research for an undisclosed amount.

Closure of Ex-Im Bank could impact GE operations in Wilmington

August 6, 2015

(StarNews, Wilmington)

Some of the work scheduled to be completed at GE Hitachi and GE Aviation Wilmington could move overseas if the U.S. Export-Import Bank is not renewed. Future expansions are also at risk; the company is likely to grow in countries that support government supported credit agencies such as the Ex-Im Bank.

Sanderson Farms begins site work in Robeson County

August 6, 2015

(The Fayetteville Observer)

Sanderson Farms will begin site work this month for a $100 million poultry-processing plant near St. Pauls in Robeson County. The Mississippi-based company also has begun clearing land for a hatchery near Lumberton.

Surf City joins campaign against offshore drilling

August 5, 2015

(StarNews, Wilmington)

Surf City adopted a resolution Tuesday objecting to offshore drilling and exploration for oil and gas. The coastal town joins other groups and municipalities, including Wilmington, Nags Head and Manteo, in opposing the practice (Statewide, July).

Duke Progress completes $1.25B purchase of eastern NC power plants

August 3, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Residents of 32 eastern N.C. towns could see their power bills slashed by as much as 17% now that the N.C. Eastern Municipal Power Agency has completed the sale of its ownership stake in five power plants to Duke Energy Progress. 

Scotland County works to attract new industry

August 3, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Business owners in Scotland County, which had the second-highest unemployment rate in the state in June, are offering incentives such as free gas, haircuts and country-club memberships to recruit new industry. The county has struggled to recover economically as manufacturers including Abbott Laboratories and WestPoint Stevens have shut down factories, laying off thousands of workers.

Wilmington film festival adding startup conference

July 31, 2015

(Greater Wilmington Business Journal)

Wilmington's Cucalorus Film Festival will expand to include a business conference that will highlight the area's entrepreneurs. The festival is partnering with UNC Wilmington's Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and other local groups to add workshops, speakers and more. The 20-year-old festival will be held Nov. 10-15.

Former CFCC president could face criminal investigation

July 29, 2015

(StarNews, Wilmington)

Former Cape Fear Community College president Ted Spring awarded raises and promotions without approval of the board of trustees and used at least $35,993 for personal expenses, according to a report by the N.C. Office of the State Auditor. Spring resigned abruptly in January, later demanded to be reinstated and filed a lawsuit against the school.