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Western

Asheville startup acquired by Boston software company

April 15, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Lab Escape, a 12-year-old Asheville-based software company with five employees, has been acquired by Boston-based e-commerce company Teikametrics for an undisclosed amount. Teikametrics helps third-party Amazon retailers with pricing and inventory analysis.

Asheville airport get $10M federal grant

April 15, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Asheville Regional Airport was awarded a $10 million federal grant that will help fund a $64 million, four-year project to replace the airport's 50-year-old runway.

Advanced-manufacturing school opens in Burnsville

April 14, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

State and local officials celebrated the opening of Mayland Community College's Yancey Learning Center, a $2.4 million advanced-manufacturing school that has already enrolled 35 students. Charlotte-based Duke Energy Foundation donated $250,000 for the school to buy a 3-D metal printer.

Lees-McRae to expand athletic complex

April 13, 2015

(The Avery Journal-Times, Newland)

Lees-McRae College in Banner Elk plans to add an indoor training facility, a media room and a renovated student recreation center as part of an expansion to its athletic-complex. The projects will be funded with private donations and partnerships and are expected to be complete by fall 2015.

Buncombe courting 'significant' economic-development project

April 8, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Buncombe County commissioners remain tight-lipped about the identity of the company considering locating at a 137-acre industrial site the county plans to purchase for $6.8 million. Commissioner Brownie Newman said the company would provide "living-wage jobs ... that would support middle-class families."

DHHS audit finds deficiencies

April 3, 2015

(Greensboro News & Record)

An audit of the state Department of Health and Human Services showed significant errors and deficiencies in its oversight of state programs, including errors in 24% of 272 claims sampled that resulted in $464,942 in overpayment.

Asheville's Mission Hospital suffers losses from uninsured

March 30, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Mission Hospital's 63-bed ER lost $4 million in 2013 after writing off $17.5 million in charity care. Like other providers, the Asheville-based health system relies on private insurance to make money. The system lost $35.4 million on Medicare patients in 2013, and that number is expected to increase as the number of retirees in the region grows.

Asheville takes a closer look at plans for whitewater park

March 26, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Asheville City Council will allow staffers to examine plans for a whitewater park for kayakers on the French Broad River. Park advocates spoke out in support of the $1.8 million facility, which would be privately funded.

Asheville's River Arts District gets makeover

March 23, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Asheville's River Arts District will benefit from $50 million in public funding and about $200 million in private investment over the next six years. The money will pay for greenways, road improvements and other infrastructure upgrades in the once-industrial area.

Ground-breaking held for Hendersonville health center

March 20, 2015

(Hendersonville Times-News)

Officials broke ground Thursday on a 98,000-square-foot health-sciences center in Hendersonville that is a partnership of local governments, Pardee Hospital, Blue Ridge Community College and Wingate University. The center will house educational programs, a cancer center and surgical offices.

Western NC ski resorts wrap up successful season

March 20, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

After a slow start in December, western N.C. ski resorts benefited from low temperatures and gas prices over the last two months. "We couldn't be more pleased from January on," Rick Bussey, co-owner of Wolf Ridge Ski Resort in Mars Hill, said.

Catawba Brewing to open 2nd Asheville tasting room

March 20, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Asheville's 19th brewery is set to open by the end of March. Catawba Brewing will open its second Asheville location in the South Slope district on March 30; the Morganton-based beer-maker already has a tasting room in Biltmore Village. 

Buncombe County buys industrial site for $6.8M

March 19, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Buncombe County will spend $6.8 million to purchase a 137-acre site it hopes will lure an unnamed economic-development prospect. David Gantt, chairman of the board of commissioners, compared the scope of the project to "Project X," which refers to GE Aviation's local expansion which spurred competition among at least 12 states in 2013.

Buncombe commissioners to discuss economic-development project

March 17, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Buncombe County commissioners will meet in a closed session Tuesday to discuss an undisclosed economic-development issue. Following the meeting, the commissioners will begin a retreat to talk about zoning and land issues, economic development and the county's 2016 budget.

Plans for upscale apartment complex stirs controversy in Asheville

March 16, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Some community leaders are expressing reservations about a proposed 140-unit apartment complex in downtown Asheville. While the complex would help address a shortage of rental units downtown, opponents worry the market-based rents proposed by the developer will be unaffordable for many people who work there.

Yadkin Bank names Lippert director of IT

March 13, 2015

(The Elkin Tribune)

Raleigh-based Yadkin Bank named Robert Lippert director of information technology. Lippert was vice president of information technology for Winston-Salem-based Allegacy Federal Credit Union and previously served as director of retail systems for Mooresville-based Lowe's. He will be based in Elkin.

PEDS Legwear celebrates Hildebran plant opening

March 12, 2015

(The News Herald, Morganton)

Gov. Pat McCrory touted the state's "Carolina Comeback" in manufacturing at the ribbon cutting for PEDS Legwear's new $16 million sock-manufacturing plant in Hildebran. Formerly Richelieu Legwear, the Canada-based company last year invested $7 million in a failing sock company and plans to create more than 205 jobs by 2018. 

Sylva's Innovation Brewing involved in trademark dispute

March 11, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

A small Sylva brewing company founded in 2013 is involved in a trademark dispute with Kalamazoo, Mich.-based Bell's Brewery. Bell's filed a federal action against Innovation Brewing, which only brews about 500 barrels a year, saying its name and slogan "bottling innovation since 1985" could be confused with Bell's "inspired brewing" slogan.

Western NC faces doctor shortage

March 10, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

All 16 counties in Western North Carolina have too few health care providers to meet the needs of the population, according to the Mountain Area Health Education Center. A 2015 survey revealed that only 3% of medical-school graduates said they planned to practice in rural areas.

Sierra Nevada opens restaurant, taproom

March 10, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Sierra Nevada will open its new restaurant and taproom Tuesday in Mills River. Adjacent to its Henderson County brewery, the restaurant will seat more than 400 people. Outdoor dining will be available later this year, along with a music hall and amphitheater.

Charlotte

Cabarrus to consider incentives for $12.5M project

April 20, 2015

(The Independent Tribune, Concord)

Cabarrus County commissioners will hold a public hearing Monday on whether to provide incentives for an unidentified company to invest $12.5 million and create 176 jobs in Harrisburg.

Airlines, CLT airport officials defend tax cap for jet fuel

April 20, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Officials from American Airlines and Charlotte Douglas International Airport said Friday that extending the state's cap on sales tax for jet fuel is needed to keep costs competitive and for Charlotte to maintain its AA hub. The state House has passed a bill that would extend the cap, but the Senate introduced a competing bill that doesn't include the tax break.

Tesla set to open Charlotte area store

April 20, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

California-based Tesla will open a store and service center in Matthews this week. It's the second North Carolina store for the high-end electric car manufacturer. Tesla's other N.C. store is in Raleigh.

Specialty grocer to open at Charlotte's SouthPark mall

April 17, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Reid's Fine Foods will open its third Charlotte-area location in an 8,200-square-foot space at SouthPark mall. The location, which is expected to open by Oct. 1, will feature indoor and outdoor dining. Owner Tom Coker says the specialty-foods retailer hopes to expand outside of Charlotte into Winston-Salem, the Triangle and South Carolina.

BofA reports $3.4 billion in first-quarter profit

April 16, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Bank of America reported profit of $3.4 billion in the first quarter, compared with a loss of $276 million a year ago. Total revenue fell 6% to $21.4 billion. CEO Brian Moynihan said Terry Laughlin, president of strategic initiatives, will lead the resubmission of the bank's capital plan, which is due to the Federal Reserve by Sept. 30.

Carolinas HealthCare eliminates No. 2 exec position

April 15, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Charlotte-based Carolinas HealthCare System said Tuesday it will eliminate the position of president and chief operating officer effective May 31. Joe Piemont, 60, has worked for the Charlotte-based health system for 18 years and received $3.5 million in compensation in 2014.

Property revaluation adds to Charlotte's budget shortfall

April 15, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

A recent commercial property revaluation showed significant reductions that have cost the city of Charlotte about $14 million in property taxes. Some property owners, meanwhile, will save hundreds of thousands of dollars on their tax bills.

Duke Energy hearing delayed

April 15, 2015

(WRAL.com)

A U.S. District Court judge approved a one-month delay of Duke Energy's hearing for violations of the Clean Water Act at five North Carolina power plants. The Charlotte-based utility said in February it would pay $102 million in fines and restitution over the pollution.

Decker joins UNCC board of trustees

April 14, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Former Duke Energy executive and state Commerce Secretary Sharon Decker will join UNC Charlotte's board of trustees July 1. Decker also serves on the boards of Matthews-based Family Dollar Stores and Charlotte-based Coca-Cola Bottling Co. Consolidated.

Charlotte City Council approves new seating for coliseum

April 14, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

The Charlotte City Coucil approved spending $975,000 to replace existing seats at Bojangles' Coliseum with larger ones. The upgrade is part of a $16 million, two-year renovation plan. The Charlotte Checkers hockey team will move their games from Time Warner Cable Arena to the coliseum in 2017.

Duke Energy increased contributions to Republican Governors Association

April 13, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Duke Energy donated $3.05 million to the Republican Governors Association in 2014 – more than 10 times the utility's previous highest annual contribution to the group, which backed Gov. Pat McCrory's 2012 campaign.

Chatham, Lee counties hold hearings on coal-ash storage plans

April 13, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Two public hearings this week will allow residents of Lee and Chatham counties to speak out about Duke Energy's proposal to store up to 20 million tons of coal ash in local landfills.

Novant, BCBS offer 'bundled payment' for knee surgeries

April 13, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Novant Health will offer a bundled-payment option for knee-replacement surgery that includes doctors' office visits and physical therapy. Under the arrangement, which is only available to Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina customers, patients will receive one bill for services related to the procedure.

Bojangles' IPO could alter growth plans

April 10, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Charlotte-based Bojangles' says it can double its presence in the Southeast, where it now operates more than 600 restaurants, but will it feel pressure to expand beyond the region once it becomes a public company?

Charlotte's Duke Energy appeals $25M fine

April 10, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Duke Energy filed an appeal Thursday requesting that $25.1 million in fines over groundwater contamination at its Sutton power plant in Wilmington be dismissed. The fines, imposed last month by the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources, set a state record as the largest-ever penalty for environmental damage.

Peele out as SunTrust's Charlotte region president

April 10, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Bill Peele has left his position as president of the Charlotte region for Atlanta-based SunTrust Banks. The company declined to provide more details about his departure.

CEO of Charlotte-based Electrolux North America resigns

April 9, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Jack Truong has resigned as CEO of Electrolux Major Appliances North America. The company said Truong left to pursue "other interests." The Swedish appliance-maker moved its North American headquarters to Charlotte in 2010 and expects to employ 1,600 people there by the end of 2017.
Related: Electrolux issues profit warning for North America unit

Family Dollar 2Q earnings fall, but beat expectations

April 9, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Matthews-based Family Dollar Stores reported second quarter earnings of 67 cents a share, compared with 80 cents a share for the same period a year ago. Excluding merger-related costs, the earnings were higher than analysts' projections. Sales for the quarter rose 3% to $2.8 million.

Dollar Tree will sell 340 Family Dollar retail stores

April 8, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Dollar Tree said Tuesday it have to sell about 340 Family Dollar stores to comply with the Federal Trade Commission in completing its $8.5 billion acquisition of the Matthews-based retailer. Chesapeake, Va.-based Dollar Tree had originally reported it would need to divest about 300 stores. The deal is expected to close in May.

Transportation company adding 40 jobs in Charlotte

April 8, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Total Quality Logistics will add 40 jobs in Charlotte by year-end as part of a companywide expansion. The Cincinnati-based freight brokerage firm employs about 70 people in Charlotte. Most of the new jobs will be sales positions.

Triad

Outlook positive for High Point Market

April 20, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Furniture manufacturers and organizers of the High Point Market believe improved economic conditions will continue to strengthen the furniture industry. The biannual trade show, which is expected to attract up to 80,000 participants, continues through Thursday.

Davidson County OKs incentives for company expansion

April 17, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Davidson County commissioners approved an incentive package totaling $175,000 for an unnamed, existing business in the county to add 170 jobs over five years. The company would invest $13 million over two years.

Targacept drug fails clinical trial

April 17, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Winston-Salem-based Targacept will end development of a drug-compound treatment for a gastrointestinal disorder following a failed clinical trial. The Winston-Salem-based company said in March it would be acquired by California-based Catalyst Biosciences, though that deal could be in jeopardy following Pfizer's decision in April to end a licensing agreement with Catalyst.

Former CEO of Piedmont Triad Partnership under investigation

April 16, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

The Piedmont Triad Partnership said Wednesday that former CEO David Powell is being investigated regarding possible financial irregularities. Officials at the regional economic-development group said they learned of the irregularities after Powell resigned in January.

Natty Greene's explores expansion opportunities

April 15, 2015

(News & Record, Greensboro)

While cities including Rocky Mount and Greenville have shown interest in luring Natty Greene's Pub & Brewing Co. away from Greensboro, co-founder Chris Lester has said he wants to keep the business in the Gate City. The company is seeking financing for a $10 million to $15 million expansion of its production facility.

Rezoning battle continues in Greensboro

April 15, 2015

(News & Record, Greensboro)

A neighborhood group in Greensboro plans to file a protest petition following a zoning commission's decision that will clear the way for an Atlanta developer to build a grocery store, shops and about 20 residential units at the corner of Friendly Avenue and Hobbs Road. The petition will require city council members to vote on the proposal.

Herbalife could add 300 jobs in Winston-Salem

April 14, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Winston-Salem City Council and the Forsyth County Board of Commissioners will consider whether to award $300,000 in incentives for Los Angeles-based Herbalife to add 300 jobs at its local plant. The new jobs, which would pay an average annual salary of $61,000, would be in addition to the 500 workers the nutritional-products maker has already committed to create by year-end.

High Point looks to energize downtown

April 13, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Some High Point leaders want to develop a downtown revitalization plan that would attract people year-round. An estimated 75,000 furniture-industry professionals are expected to attend the biannual High Point Market this week.
Related: Vegas market scare fades from roar to whisper, High Point Enterprise

Greensboro Partnership taps Mississippi economic developer as CEO

April 9, 2015

(News & Record, Greensboro)

The Greensboro Partnership named Brent Christensen president and CEO. Christensen, 45 and a Duke University graduate, has served for three years as executive director of the Mississippi Development Authority, where he worked with Nissan and Yokahama Tire on bringing jobs to the state.

HondaJet to embark on world tour

April 9, 2015

(News & Record, Greensboro)

Honda Aircraft will take its HondaJet light aircraft on a world tour beginning April 25, with stops in Japan and Europe. The $4.5 million corporate jet, produced in Greensboro, is awaiting FAA certification.

Unifi expanding production at Triad fiber plants

April 8, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Greensboro-based Unifi is increasing production at its manufacturing plants in Madison and Yadkinville. The company makes synthetic yarns, including the successful Repreve product, which is made from recycled bottles. Unifi is adding texturing machines at the factories, but the company didn't say how many new jobs might be created.

Targacept deal could be in jeopardy

April 7, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

A San Francisco-based drug developer's plan to acquire Targacept may be in jeopardy as a result of the termination of a licensing deal that could impact its financial position. Winston-Salem-based Targacept announced last month it would be acquired by Catalyst Biosciences in a reverse merger.

Herbalife distributors questioned by authorities

April 7, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Federal law-enforcement officials have contacted 10 leading Herbalife distributors to inquire about their business practices, according to a CNBC report. Hedge-fund manager Bill Ackman has accused the company, which cut the ribbon on its Winston-Salem production plant in January (Statewide, March), of operating a pyramid scheme, and multiple federal investigations regarding its business practices are ongoing.

Report: Business-jet sales could propel HondaJet

April 6, 2015

(News & Record, Greensboro)

A new report shows the business-jet market is expect to grow by more than 6.8% by 2019, and Greensboro-based Honda Aircraft is poised to become a key player. The company said in March it is close to receiving final FAA certification for its HondaJet light aircraft, which is being manufactured at Piedmont Triad International Airport.

DHHS audit finds deficiencies

April 3, 2015

(Greensboro News & Record)

An audit of the state Department of Health and Human Services showed significant errors and deficiencies in its oversight of state programs, including errors in 24% of 272 claims sampled that resulted in $464,942 in overpayment.

DENR: Coal-ash cleanup could begin in August

April 2, 2015

(News & Record, Greensboro)

The N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources said Duke Energy could begin excavating coal ash at its Riverbend Station near Mount Holly in late August.

Novant reports lower net profit in 2014

April 2, 2015

Novant Health said it had net income of $201.8 million in 2014, down from $273 million in the previous year. That included an investment gain of $28.9 million. Revenues increased 5.4% to $3.79 billion from 2013.

Reynolds subsidiaries debut new products

April 1, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

R.J. Reynolds Tobacco will launch Camel White, a premium-branded cigarette, in 21 western and midwestern states. Reynolds American sudsidiary American Snuff, which makes the top-selling Grizzly-branded snuff product, also introduced a new dark wintergreen flavor Tuesday.
Related: Reynolds confronting antitrust concerns over Lorillard merger, Bloomberg Business

President of Wake Forest Baptist Health steps down

March 31, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Karen "Bobbi" Carbone is stepping down as president of Wake Forest Baptist Health, a division of Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center. Carbone joined the division in March 2014 as chief operating officer and became president when Thomas Sibert retired in August. The Winston-Salem-based health system said Carbone is leaving "to pursue other opportunities." Mike Rutherford, chief financial officer, also plans to step down in April.

Report: Tobacco companies face final FTC review

March 31, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Reynolds American and Lorillard this week could hold a final meeting with members of the Federal Trade Commission regarding the companies' proposed $27.4 million merger, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal. The tobacco companies said they expect the deal to close by June 30. Shareholders of both companies approved the merger in January.

Triangle

Cary to consider incentives for corporate relocation

April 17, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

The Cary Town Council is considering granting incentives to an unnamed company that could move its headquarters there. The company would bring 47 jobs with an average annual salary of $85,000. The N.C. Commerce Department is negotiating with the company.

Study: Raleigh No. 2 in tech-related job growth

April 16, 2015

(WRALTechWire)

The Raleigh metro area ranked No. 2 behind Austin, Texas on a Forbes study of cities with the highest growth rate in the technology sector between 2004 and 2014. Tech-related jobs in Raleigh grew 62.3%, according to the report. Raleigh ranked first in job growth related to STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) skills.

Durham's Innocrin Pharmaceuticals raises $28M

April 16, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Innocrin Pharmaceuticals has raised $28 million in a financing led by Wilmington venture-capital firm Eshelman Ventures, which was started by PPD founder Fred Eshelman. The Durham-based company, which does not have any products on the market, plans to use the money to develop treatments for breast and prostate cancer.

Lee County resident seeks to halt fracking applications

April 16, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

The owner of a Lee County horse farm is questioning the legality of the state's fracking rules and has asked a Wake County judge to block fracking permit applications from being processed. Keely Wood Puricz says the state's fracking regulations are illegal because the commission that created them is unconstitutional due to the fact that the state legislature appointed most of its members.

Duke moving entrepreneurship academy downtown

April 16, 2015

(The Herald-Sun, Durham)

Duke University will move its Innovation and Entrepreneurship Initiative to a downtown redevelopment led by Longfellow Real Estate Partners and Measurement Inc. The Durham Innovation District will cover 1.7 million square feet and will include office and lab space, plus 50,000 square feet of retail and 300 residential units.

Cary's Dude Solutions acquires Sanford software company

April 15, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Cary-based Dude Solutions has acquired Mobile311, a small Sanford-based software company, for an undisclosed amount. The company will incorporate Mobile311's technology into its FacilityDude software, which helps government groups and others manage building maintenance and IT operations.

Lee County residents protest coal-ash storage plans

April 14, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

About 140 people turned out Monday for a public hearing on Duke Energy's proposal to store up to 20 million tons of coal ash in two Lee County landfills. Lee County initially opposed the proposal but has since agreed not to challenge the plan in exchange for a $12 million payment from the utility.

Morrisville's Clinipace acquires German CRO

April 13, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Clinipace Worldwide has acquired Accovion, a Frankfurt, Germany-based contract-research organization with 260 employees. The Morrisville-based CRO said in January it had raised $50 million in a financing by a California-based private-equity firm.

Citizens group seeks to halt Chatham Park construction

April 14, 2015

(WRAL.com)

Pittsboro Matters filed a motion Friday asking a judge to grant an injunction to stop construction of a road project in Chatham Park, the massive proposed development that is expected to increase the town's population from 3,000 to more than 60,000 people.

Lenovo gains market share in PCs

April 10, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

While overall demand for PCs has weakened, Lenovo increased its worldwide market share to 18.9% in the first quarter, up from 17% a year ago. The Beijing-based company, which employs about 3,800 in North Carolina, also showed gains in the United States, where it ranks No. 4 with an 11.8% market share.

Raleigh hopes to finalize Dix property purchase by May

April 9, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Raleigh officials and Gov. Pat McCrory expect to finalize a deal for the city to buy the former Dorothea Dix psychiatric hospital property by May 5. A Senate proposal that would nullify the deal and sell the property to the highest bidder is awaiting a committee hearing. Raleigh agreed to pay $52 million for the property; three senators who filed the bill say the land is worth more.

Plastics company expanding in Moore County

April 8, 2015

(The Pilot, Pinehurst)

Reliance Packaging is expanding in Moore County and will add 48 jobs to its existing 12 over the next three years. A division of Lyndhurst, N.J.-based Sigma Plastics, the company will invest $3.5 million in its Aberdeen plant, where it makes plastic bags for the lawn and garden industry. Reliance will receive a state grant of up to $52,000 and a matching grant from Aberdeen and Moore County.

Lenovo names new president of North American operations

April 8, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Lenovo named Aymar de Lencquesaing, who was president of the computer maker's European, Middle East and Africa operations since last year, president of its North American division. He succeeds Jay Parker, who was promoted last month to senior vice president of the Beijing-based company's enterprise business.

Another Durham startup wins Google Demo Day

April 7, 2015

(The Herald Sun, Durham)

Mati Energy, a startup based at Durham's American Underground that makes herb-infused caffeinated teas, won the top prize at the invitation-only Google Demo Day in Mountain View, Calif. Marketing-software company Windsor Circle won last year's competition.

Proposed merger of food distributors vexes Triangle restaurateurs

April 6, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Some Triangle restaurant owners worry a proposed merger between the nation's largest food service providers, Sysco and US Foods, will lead to higher prices. The FTC took steps to block the merger in February, and state attorney general Roy Cooper is expected to join 10 other states in opposing the combination of the two companies. The federal agency says the Charlotte and Triangle markets are among metro areas that would be most impacted by the merger.

DHHS audit finds deficiencies

April 3, 2015

(Greensboro News & Record)

An audit of the state Department of Health and Human Services showed significant errors and deficiencies in its oversight of state programs, including errors in 24% of 272 claims sampled that resulted in $464,942 in overpayment.

Salix plans to cut 258 jobs

April 3, 2015

(The News & Observer)

Salix Pharmaceuticals is laying off 258 people at its Raleigh headquarters, the company announced Thursday, the same it was acquired by Laval, Quebec-based Valeant Pharmaceuticals for $11 billion.

GSK plans R&D center in Maryland

April 3, 2015

(News & Observer)

GlaxoSmithKline, which has North American headquarters in Research Triangle Park, announced it will open a vaccines research center in Rockville, Md. The company said last week that it laid off 180 workers in North Carolina, in addition to 900 positions eliminated in December.

Valeant completes acquisition of Salix

April 2, 2015

(WRAL TechWire)

Valeant Pharmaceuticals has completed its $11 billion acquisition of Raleigh-based Salix Pharmaceuticals. Salix will operate as a subsidiary of Laval, Quebec-based Valeant. It isn't known if the company plans to cut any jobs.

Quintiles forms joint venture with Quest Diagnostics

April 1, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Durham-based Quintiles will form a joint venture with Quest Diagnostics to combine lab services for clinical trials. Quintiles, the world's largest contract-research organization, is the No. 2 provider of clinical-trial lab services behind Burlington-based LabCorp. New Jersey-based Quest acquired High Point's Solstas Lab Partners a year ago for $570 million.

Eastern

Apple buys forest land in Brunswick County

April 17, 2015

(StarNews, Wilmington)

Through a partnership with nonprofit environmental group The Conservation Fund, Apple has acquired more than 3,600 acres of forest land in Brunswick County. The California-based company plans to harvest timber using sustainable practices and use it in packaging for products including iPhones, iPads and Apple TVs.
Related: Apple to invest in solar projects, forests

Company buys 46,000-square-foot industrial space in Leland

April 17, 2015

(Greater Wilmington Business Journal)

A company named Barn Creek LLC bought a 46,000-square-foot, bank-owned industrial building in Leland for $575,000. The warehouse has about 4,500 square feet of office space and sits on about 3 acres. The buyer's plans for the property are unknown.

Southeastern Health gets grant for medical training center

April 16, 2015

(The Fayetteville Observer)

Southeastern Health received a $500,000 grant from the Golden LEAF Foundation that will allow it to complete renovations to a medical-education center at its Lumberton hospital. Southeastern has raised a total of $1.6 million for the renovations, which are expected to be complete by July.

Investigation continues in Smith Advertising case

April 14, 2015

(The Fayetteville Observer)

Nearly a year after they were arrested and charged with wire fraud in a federal court in Florida, Gary Smith and his son Todd have yet to face trial. The duo, who owned the former Smith Advertising and Associates in Fayetteville, are accused of running a Ponzi scheme that bilked investors out of $55 million (Cover Story, December 2013).

New chancellor chosen for UNC Wilmington

April 13, 2015

(Greater Wilmington Business Journal)

The UNC Board of Governors named Jose "Zito" Sartarelli chancellor of UNC Wimington. A native of Brazil, Sartarelli spent 30 years working in the pharmaceutical industry and has been dean of West Virginia University's business school since 2010.

Carteret County's oldest restaurant is for sale

April 13, 2015

(Cateret County News-Times)

The owners of Capt. Bill's Restaurant have decided not to open for the summer season and have listed the business, which first opened in 1938, for sale. John and Diane Poag have owned the waterfront restaurant since 1982 and are retiring.

NewBridge names regional real-estate chief

April 10, 2015

(StarNews, Wilmington)

Greensboro-based NewBridge Bank tapped Senior Vice President Hunter Gallimore as head of commercial real estate in Wilmington and eastern North Carolina.

Wilmington's PPD forms joint venture with Japanese company

April 9, 2015

(Greater Wilmington Business Journal)

Pharmaceutical Product Development announced a joint venture with Japan-based Shin Nippon Biomedical Laboratories to provide clinical-development services in Japan. The new company, which will have three offices in Japan, will be majority-owned by Wilmington-based PPD.

UNC governors could name UNCW chancellor this week

April 9, 2015

(Greater Wilmington Business Journal)

The UNC Board of Governors is expected to announce its candidate for UNC Wilmington's new chancellor on Friday. Former Chancellor Gary Miller resigned last summer to lead the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay.

Wilmington's Lumina Station sells for $14.5M

April 8, 2015

(Greater Wilmington Business Journal)

A Myrtle Beach, S.C.-based REIT has acquired Lumina Station, a 68,794-square-foot office and retail center in Wilmington, for more than $14.5 million. Burroughs & Chapin's portfolio includes entertainment complexes Broadway at the Beach in Myrtle Beach and Barefoot Landing in North Myrtle Beach.

DHHS audit finds deficiencies

April 3, 2015

(Greensboro News & Record)

An audit of the state Department of Health and Human Services showed significant errors and deficiencies in its oversight of state programs, including errors in 24% of 272 claims sampled that resulted in $464,942 in overpayment.

Utility changes would cost Fayetteville $1.6M

April 3, 2015

(Fayetteville Observer)

Fayetteville City Manager Ted Voorhees said Thursday that proposed changes to the town's Public Works Commission would mean a $1.6 million shortfall next year. In response, Voorhees instituted a hiring freeze and requested plans for cuts of up to 10%.

Vidant announces new CEO

April 2, 2015

(The Daily Reflector, Greenville)

Vidant Health on Wednesday named Michael Waldrum CEO. Waldrum was most recently president and CEO of the University of Arizona Health Network. He replaces David Herman, who resigned in October and now leads Essentia Health in Duluth, Minn. Greenville-based Vidant employs 12,000 people and operates eight hospitals in eastern N.C.

House approves sale of eastern NC power plants

April 2, 2015

(The Daily Reflector, Greenville)

Gov. Pat McCrory was expected to sign a bill that will allow 32 eastern cites to sell their ownership stakes in five power plants to Duke Energy Progress (Statewide, September 2014). The state House and Senate approved the legislation, which is expected to lower electric rates for customers in those municipalities.

International Paper to invest $135M in NC plant, layoffs to follow

April 1, 2015

(StarNews, Wilmington)

International Paper plans to invest $135 million in its Columbus County plant, but the upgrades will result in the loss of an unspecified number of jobs. The conversion, expected to be completed by mid-2016, will allow the mill to move to 100% production of fluff pulp that is used in products including baby diapers. The company employs 740 people at the plant.

Bathtub manufacturer laying off 87 in Wilson

March 31, 2015

(The Wilson Times)

Bathcraft will close its Wilson manufacturing plant and lay off 87 workers. The Remerton, Ga.-based company, which makes showers and tubs for residential homes, said it is closing the plant due to continued uncertainty in the housing market.

GE Hitachi opens training station

March 31, 2015

(Greater Wilmington Business Journal)

GE Hitachi held a ribbon-cutting Monday for a reactor-maintenance training facility at its plant in Castle Hayne. The full-size replica will be used to train hundreds of workers in refueling and maintenance work for the company's reactors worldwide.

Ted Spring sues CFCC trustees

March 30, 2015

(Greater Wilmington Business Journal)

Former Cape Fear Community College President Ted Spring has filed a lawsuit against the school's board of trustees, alleging the group forced him to resign in January. Spring is asking to be reinstated and to be paid damages of at least $25,000.

Interest in NC film industry will fade without funding

March 30, 2015

(StarNews, Wilmington)

Film-industry officials say there is still interest in bringing film projects to North Carolina, but without an increase in incentives the state will fall lower down on the list of options. An estimated 20% of the state's 4,000-member crew base has left the state to find work in other locations.

UNCW's Vetter to fill in for Roberts on a temporary basis

March 30, 2015

(Greater Wilmington Business Journal)

UNC Wilmington officials said Ron Vetter, associate provost for research and dean of the graduate school, will assume former CIE executive director Jim Roberts' responsibilities on an interim basis. The school announced Thursday that Roberts had left the position, but didn't give a reason for his departure.