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Western

Duke Energy to shutter Asheville coal plant

May 20, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Duke Energy Progress said Tuesday it will close its 376-megawatt, coal-fired power plant at Lake Julian within five years. The utility will build a new 650-watt, natural gas-fired plant that also will utilize solar energy. Duke plans to invest $1.1 billion in the project, which includes a new transmission substation in South Carolina. Pending state regulatory approval, the new plant could go online by 2020.

Western NC, upstate SC leaders join forces

May 20, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Business leaders from western North Carolina and upstate South Carolina met Tuesday to discuss taking a regional approach to economic development. The inaugural meeting of the I-26 Regional Business Leadership drew more than 80 business members from cities including Asheville, Spartanburg, S.C., and Greenville, S.C.

Asheville's Biltmore Village attracts new merchants

May 19, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Asheville's historic Biltmore Village is thriving, with nine new independent merchants slated to open by June. Retail shops and restaurants there have reported a 5 to 20% increase in sales from 2013-14.

Asheville City Council cracks down on short-term rentals

May 14, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Members of the Asheville City Council want to toughen enforcement on short-term property rentals gaining popularity through websites such as Airbnb.com, saying the practice turns quiet, residential neighborhoods into noisy hotel districts and reduces affordable housing.

New Belgium's distribution center is complete

May 13, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

New Belgium Brewing has completed construction of a 141,000-square-foot distribution center in Enka. The Fort Collins, Colo.-based beer company's West Asheville brewery, which will serve the eastern United States, is under construction and scheduled to open by year-end.

Asheville restaurateurs: Lower taxes would help with wage issues

May 7, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Asheville restaurant owners say there's no quick fix to wage disputes in the industry, particularly in a city where a rising cost of living forces many workers to live outside the city limit.

Buncombe may tighten construction rules near parkway

May 5, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Concerned that development will impact tourism, Buncombe County commissioners plan to vote Tuesday on strengthening restrictions on construction along the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Asheville's BB&T building to become upscale hotel

April 29, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

McKibbon Hotel Group will convert Asheville's 17-story BB&T building into a high-end, boutique hotel with rates comparable to those of the Omni Grove Park Inn and the Grand Bohemian Hotel Asheville. Construction is scheduled to be complete in 2017. "It will absolutely be the nicest hotel in the city," according to John McKibbon, chairman of the Tampa, Fla.-based hotel group.

Another craft brewer eyes Asheville for expansion

April 27, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Oregon-based Deschutes Brewery, the nation's sixth largest craft-beer brewer, is looking to build a brewery and distribution center that will allow it to expand in the Southeast and along the East Coast. Deschutes representatives in December visited several Asheville sites, including a 137-acre parcel recently purchased by Buncombe County, and plan to return in May.

Mission Health ranked among nation's best hospital systems

April 24, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

For the fourth consecutive year, Truven Health Analytics named Asheville's Mission Health one of the top 15 health systems in the United States. Mission earned the recognition for its low rate of complications, low death rates and high marks on overall patient satisfaction, among other criteria.

Yancey County deploys gigabit Internet service

April 21, 2015

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Yancey County deployed an ultra-fast Internet network in March, offering residents speeds of up to one gigabit per second. The project, which will expand into Mitchell County, was funded by an $18.6 million federal grant and a $6.6 million loan from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

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.

Charlotte

Duke Energy begins coal-ash removal at Charlotte power plant

May 22, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Duke Energy began removing coal-ash from its Riverbend power plant west of Charlotte on Thursday. The utility is working to get permits to move most of the first 1 million tons of ash to clay mines in Chatham and Lee counties; meanwhile, the first truckloads will be sent to a lined landfill in Homer, Ga.

Family Dollar deal to close in July

May 22, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Dollar Tree will complete its pending acquisition of Matthews-based Family Dollar Stores in early July. The Chesapeake, Va.-based discount retailer said it plans to close about 330 Family Dollar stores in order to receive Federal Trade Commission approval for the $8.5 billion deal.

Charlotte No. 3 in population growth

May 21, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

New census estimates show Charlotte's population grew 2% between 2013 and 2014, reaching 809,958. It was the third-fastest growing big city between 2010 and last year, behind Austin, Texas and New Orleans, with a growth rate of 10.7%. Raleigh's population grew 8.9% during the same time period.
Related: Rolesvile has become NC's new boomtown

Bank of America fined $205 million

May 21, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

The Federal Reserve on Wednesday imposed massive fines against six banks, including Charlotte-based Bank of America. Bank of America must pay $205 million in fines related to foreign-trading practices from 2008 to 2013. A bank spokesman said the fines will be covered with existing reserves.

Mecklenburg commissioners ask McCrory to delay toll project

May 20, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Mecklenburg County commissioners joined Cornelius, Davidson, Huntersville and Mooresville in urging Gov. Pat McCrory and the N.C. Department of Transportation to delay finalizing a contract with a private company to build toll lanes on Interstate 77. Residents and local leaders say they have received little information about the project from the state.

AvidXchange acquires Texas software company

May 20, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Charlotte-based AvidXchange has acquired a Texas-based software company for an undisclosed amount. AvidXchange, which announced last year plans to add 600 jobs in Charlotte, provides accounts-payable software for midsized companies.

Sale of Charlotte Observer building imminent

May 19, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Charlotte-based developer Lincoln Harris is expected to sign a deal this week to buy The Charlotte Observer's 9.4-acre downtown property. The site, near Bank of America stadium and Duke Energy Center, is owned by the pension fund of McClatchy, the newspaper's parent company.

Shareholders question NewDominion's plan to raise capital

May 18, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Leaders of Charlotte-based NewDominion Bank plan to raise capital by issuing millions of preferrred shares to the bank's largest investors, and some say the proposal puts common shareholders at a disadvantage. One of three community banks based in Charlotte, NewDominion has not posted an annual profit since 2008.

South side of downtown Charlotte poised for growth

May 18, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

The Stonewall Street corridor in downtown Charlotte, which consists largely of vacant parcels and surface parking lots, is experiencing a construction boom, with hundreds of apartments, hotels and offices planned. 

Family Dollar considered going private in 2007

May 18, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Matthews-based Family Dollar Stores, which is being acquired by Dollar Tree, looked at going private in 2007, the same year rival Dollar General was bought by KKR. The private-equity firm has been credited with improving operations and ultimately turning Dollar General around.

Prosecutors: Duke Energy ignored warnings prior to ash spill

May 15, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Federal prosecutors said Duke Energy twice refused to spend $20,000 on internal video inspections of the 48-inch broken pipe that led to the massive coal-ash spill into the Dan River in February 2014. The Charlotte-based utility was sentenced Thursday and must pay $102 million in fines and for environment projects.

NC Research Campus forms educational partnership with Costa Rica

May 15, 2015

(The Independent Tribune)

Costa Rica and the N.C. Research Campus in Kannapolis will form a collaboration to advance research in food science. The agreement, which involves groups from N.C. State and N.C. A&T State University, will allow Costa Rican scientists to train and perform research at the NCRC.

Coca-Cola Bottling continues expansion

May 14, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Charlotte-based Coca-Cola Bottling Consolidated, the largest U.S. independent Coca-Cola bottler, will expand its franchise territory to new markets in 10 states and the District of Columbia.

BofA shifts real-estate employees to outside firms

May 14, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Bank of America will move several hundred workers from its corporate real-estate group to outside firms CBRE and JLL. The bank said earlier this week that Charlotte-based Lincoln Harris would no longer manage its properties in the Southeast. Los Angeles-based CBRE and Chicago-based JLL will now manage all of BofA's buildings across the U.S. and globally.

Developer outbids Atlanta company for uptown Charlotte land

May 13, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

National developer Camden USA offered the city of Charlotte $13.3 million for a 4-acre parcel on Stonewall Street. Atlanta-based apartment developer Pollack Shores had an agreement with the city to purchase the land for $12.2 million. A new upset bid period will end May 26.

Lawmakers seek alternatives to I-77 tolls

May 13, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Lawmakers from the I-77 corridor north of Charlotte are bringing concerns about proposed toll lanes to Gov. Pat McCrory in a last-ditch effort to find alternatives to the plan. The state is about to sign a $650 million contract with a private company to build and operate toll lanes in the 26-mile corridor ("Taking a Toll," April).

Food Lion parent in merger talks

May 12, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Delhaize Group, the Brussels-based parent company of Food Lion, and Netherlands-based Royal Ahold are in preliminary merger talks, according to Belgian newspapers. Ahold operates Stop & Shop grocery stores in the U.S.

Lowe's buying 13 former Target stores in Canada

May 12, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Home-improvement retailer Lowe's will acquire 13 former Target stores and a distribution center in Canada for about $124 million. Target announced in January it was exiting the country after a failed expansion. Mooresville-based Lowe's has 38 stores and about 6,000 employees in Canada.

Bojangles' shares up 25% after stock-market debut

May 11, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Shares of Charlotte-based Bojangles' closed Friday at $23.75, up 25% from its IPO price of $19 a share. CEO Clifton Rutledge said Friday the company plans to expand gradually and won't move too quickly into new markets.

Commercial Credit postpones IPO

May 11, 2015

(The Charlotte Observer)

Charlotte-based lender Commercial Credit Group has postponed its plans to go public, according to IPO adviser Renaissance Capital. Las Vegas-based International Market Centers, which owns the majority of showroom buildings at the High Point Market, also postponed its planned IPO, Renaissance said last week.

Triad

Mohawk to expand, add 105 jobs in Rockingham County

May 22, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Carpet and rug manufacturer Mohawk Industries plans to invest $8 million over five years in an expansion of its Eden operations. The company employs about 1,200 people across the state, including more than 170 in Eden.

Ashley Furniture adding up to 300 jobs in Davie County

May 21, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Citing increased product demand, Ashley Furniture Industries plans to expand its manufacturing and distribution center in Advance and will hire up to 300 employees. The furniture company currently employs about 900 at the center.

Procter & Gamble to increase production in Guilford County

May 21, 2015

(News & Record, Greensboro)

Procter & Gamble will close a factory in Puerto Rico, shifting production to its Browns Summit plant. The company said 230 jobs will be cut in Puerto Rico, but that doesn't mean it will add as many jobs at the Guilford County plant, where it currently employs about 1,000 people and makes products including deodorant and toothpaste.

Greenboro OKs engineering study for megasite

May 21, 2015

(News & Record, Greensboro)

Greensboro City Council approved a $2.3 million engineering contract to study adding water and sewer service at the Greensboro-Randolph Megasite.

Novant Health reports decline in operating income

May 20, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Winston-Salem-based health-care system Novant Health reported $19.7 million in operating income at the start of fiscal 2015, down 1.1% from a year ago.

Heritage Home seeking new CEO

May 19, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Heritage Home Group named Richard Lozyniak interim CEO, replacing Ira Glazer, who held the position for 18 months. Lozyniak also will become a director and will assist with the search for a permanent CEO at the High Point-based furniture company.

Judge asks for November trial in ZeekRewards case

May 19, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

U.S. attorney Jill Rose is requesting the trial of ZeekRewards founder Paul Burks begin in November. Burks was indicted in October on charges related to the Lexington-based Ponzi scheme that raised $850 million from at least 2.2 million customers. Burks' hearing has been delayed four times.

What top Triad executives earned in 2014

May 18, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

An analysis of the 10 highest-paid executives of companies with a major presence in the Triad shows each received at least $10 million in total compensation in 2014, though base salaries weren't the largest part of their pay packages.

Wake Forest Innovation Quarter fuels growth in downtown Winston-Salem

May 18, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Originally conceived as a research park in downtown Winston-Salem in the early 1990s, Wake Forest Innovation Quarter has evolved but is still a work in progress. The innovation district, which is anchored by Inmar, Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center and a Wells Fargo data center, has 85 acres of developed land with 60 acres to be developed.

Randolph megasite taking shape

May 14, 2015

(News & Record, Greensboro)

Triad leaders hope a site of up to 1,800 acres will compete with other megasites in Chatham and Edgecombe counties. On June 1, Randolph County commissioners will consider spending $5.87 million to purchase 170 acres of land. The county paid $4.2 million for 255 acres earlier this year.

Novant seeks proposals for Louisburg hospital

May 12, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Novant Health is exiting the Triangle market with plans to sell Franklin Medical Center in Louisburg. The Winston-Salem-based hospital system announced in October it was reducing the number of inpatient beds at the hospital from 83 to 15.

Herbalife incentives still up in the air

May 12, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Some members of the Winston-Salem City Council were unimpressed with an Herbalife report showing 30 of its 75 local managers are members of a racial minority because only five are black. The Los Angeles-based company is seeking incentives to bring another 300 jobs to Winston-Salem.

Wells Fargo cuts ownership stake in Krispy Kreme

May 12, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Wells Fargo has cut its stake in Winston-Salem-based Krispy Kreme Doughnuts and is now the company's No. 4 institutional investor, down from No. 2. The San Francisco-based bank said in a regulatory filing Monday it cut its shares from 5.19 million to 2.62 million, or 4.04%.

Randolph wants to buy more land for megasite

May 11, 2015

(News & Record, Greensboro)

Randolph County commissioners will hold a public hearing June 1 to discuss plans to purchase a second parcel of land for a megasite it hopes will attract an automaker. The county has acquired 255 acres of a proposed 1,800-acre site.

Bank of the Carolinas to be acquired for $64M

May 8, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Mocksville-based Bank of the Carolinas will be sold to Bank of the Ozarks for $64.7 million in stock. The Little Rock, Ark.-based bank will increase its N.C. deposits from $596.2 million to $963.7 million, giving it the No. 19 market share in the state.

Davie approves incentives for manufacturer to add 50 jobs

May 6, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Davie County commissioners approved nearly $800,000 in incentives for Avgol to expand its Mocksville manufacturing plant. The company plans to add 50 jobs to its existing 220 and will add 100,000 square feet. The Israel-based company makes nonwoven materials for baby diapers and other products.

Alamance approves incentives for grocer to bring 200 jobs

May 5, 2015

(The Times-News, Burlington)

Alamance County commissioners approved incentives for German grocery chain Lidl to build an 850,000-square-foot regional headquarters and distribution center that would create 200 jobs. The company plans to begin opening stores in the U.S. by 2018.

Winston-Salem postpones vote on Herbalife incentives

May 5, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

The Winston-Salem City Council delayed voting on an incentives package for an Herbalife expansion after some council members expressed concerns that the Los Angeles-based company doesn't have enough minority workers in top positions. About 56% of Herbalife's local workforce is minority.

Winston-Salem considers incentives for Herbalife expansion

May 4, 2015

(Winston-Salem Journal)

The Winston-Salem City Council will consider economic incentives for Herbalife to add 301 jobs and invest $2.34 million in its local plant. The Los Angeles-based nutritional-products company is considering relocating its information-services division to Forsyth County. The county last week approved incentives totaling $150,000, and the state could pitch in more than $3 million.

Unifi's recycled yarn turns graduations green

May 1, 2015

(News & Record, Greensboro)

About 300,000 college graduates – including ones at Duke, UNC Chapel Hill and N.C. State – will wear caps and gowns woven with Greensboro-based Unifi's Repreve thread, which is made from recycled materials including plastic bottles. The gowns can be recycled again after ceremonies are over.

Triangle

Lenovo reports fourth-quarter results

May 22, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Revenue for computer-maker Lenovo rose 21% in the fourth quarter to $11.3 billion, a figure that would have been higher if not for currency fluctuations. Fourth-quarter net income fell 37% to $100 million, but still beat analysts' expectations of $91.6 million.

Cary software company raises $16M, adding 50 jobs

May 21, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Cary-based software company Samanage raised $16 million in a second round of funding and plans to double its workforce, adding 50 employees over the next year. The company makes cloud-based IT-management software.

Durham-based Cree to spin off Power & RF business

May 19, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Durham-based LED lighting company Cree will spin off its power and radio-frequency subsidiary into a separate company. Frank Plastina, former CEO of telecom company Tekelec, will be CEO of Cree Power & RF Division, which will be publicly traded.
Read more about Cree, from BNC's May issue: Hot and cold: Three NC tech companies in fast-growing sectors face down market whims

Allscripts cuts 60 jobs in Raleigh

May 19, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Chicago-based Allscripts laid off 60 people at its Raleigh office as part of company-wide staff cuts. The company, which develops electronic medical records, was awarded up to $5.35 million in state incentives in 2013 if it agreed to add 350 jobs to its 1,266 by 2017.

Raleigh ranks No. 1 on list of Best Cities for Jobs

May 19, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Raleigh was the only North Carolina city on Glassdoor's inaugural 25 Best Cities for Jobs report. The website, which provides employer reviews and salary information, ranked cities using factors including how easy it is to get a job, cost of living and employee satisfaction. Kansas City, Mo., ranked No. 2.

Royalty Exchange looks at selling business

May 18, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Morrisville-based Royalty Exchange is considering winding down operations or selling the business as it struggles to raise new funding. Founded in 2011, the company offers an online marketplace for songwriters and producers to sell royalty streams to investors. The company also auctions royalty rights from energy projects including wind and solar.

Rex Hospital manager steps down after investigation

May 15, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

The director of the emergency department at Raleigh's Rex Hospital has stepped down following a federal investigation into the medical center's treatment of a violent, mentally ill patient.
Also: Rex borrows $150 million to build heart center

Pinehurst to host U.S. Amateur Championship in 2019

May 15, 2015

(The Pilot, Southern Pines)

Pinehurst Resort and Country Club will host the U.S. Amateur Championship for the third time in August 2019, the United States Golf Association announced Tuesday. It will be the 10th USGA championship hosted at the club.
Related: Sure shots: North Carolina's top 100 golf courses, April

Morrisville's MaxPoint Interactive posts strong results

May 14, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Reporting its first quarterly results since its March IPO, Morrisville-based MaxPoint Interactive said Wednesday revenue increased 87% to $28.7 million, though net loss grew to $8.1 million, compared with $4.2 million a year ago. The digital-marketing company makes software to help advertisers target customers who are likely to buy their products.

Durham's Precision Bio raises $25M

May 13, 2015

(Xconomy.com)

Durham-based Precision BioSciences closed on a $25.6 million round of funding led by venBio. Founded in 2006, the company plans to use the proceeds to develop new products using its gene-editing technology.

Durham bank rebrands to attract younger customers

May 13, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

In an effort to attract a more diverse customer base, Durham-based Mechanics and Farmers Bank is rebranding to M&F Bank on June 2.

Chimerix receives $100M federal contract

May 12, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Durham-based drug developer Chimerix was awarded a $100 million federal contract to produce brincidofovir, its experimental antiviral drug that can be used to defend against smallpox, for government stockpiles. The contract could be worth as much as $435 million if the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority exercises options to order up to 1.7 million treatment courses.

Lenovo laying off 165 Triangle workers

May 12, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Lenovo confirmed Monday it will lay off 235 people nationwide, including 165 in the Triangle, as a result of its acquisition of one of IBM's server units. Most affected employees are former IBM workers.

UNC, GlaxoSmithKline team up to find cure for AIDS

May 11, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

UNC Chapel Hill and GlaxoSmithKline will form a joint venture focused on developing a cure for AIDS. Located on the UNC campus, Qura Therapeutics initially will employ about 20 scientists. GSK, which has its North American headquarters at RTP, will invest $20 million over five years in the company.

Raleigh wants to make it easier to build skyscrapers

May 11, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Raleigh City Council will consider new height limits that would allow developers to build downtown towers as high as 40 stories without obtaining special permission. Currently, projects more than 80 feet high, or about six floors, must obtain approval from the city's planning commission.

Chapel Hill startup raises $18M

May 8, 2015

(WRAL TechWire)

Spyryx Biosciences raised $18 million in a financing that included Durham-based Hatteras Venture Partners, Connecticut-based Canaan Partners and California-based 5AM Ventures. Founded in Chapel Hill in 2013, Spyryx is developing a treatment for lung diseases including cystic fibrosis and COPD.

Merger boosts net income for Raleigh's First Citizens

May 8, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

First Citizens Bank nearly tripled its first-quarter net income to $63.8 million, due primarily to its recent merger with South Carolina-based First Citizens Bank and Trust and its acquisition of Atlanta-based Capitol Bank & Trust.

Rex Hospital could have lost federal funding over incident with violent patient

May 7, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Rex Hospital in Raleigh came close to losing federal funding over its treatment of a violent, mentally ill patient during a 2 1/2-week period in January and February. A federal probe showed the hospital failed to provide a safe environment for the patient, who was kept in restraints for extended periods of time and was twice subdued with a Taser gun.

AOL's Case say Triangle needs access to capital

May 6, 2015

(WRAL TechWire, Raleigh)

AOL co-founder Steve Case said the Triangle has plenty of talent, but entrepreneurs need access to more capital to achieve success. Case stopped in Raleigh and Durham Tuesday as part of his five-city Rise of the Rest tour, which celebrates entrepreneurs. He awarded $100,000 to Archive Social, a 3-year-old Durham-based startup, in a local pitch competition.

Raleigh Chamber names new CEO

May 6, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Tim Guiliani was named CEO of the Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce. Guiliani, 33, led since 2012 the Gainesville Area Chamber in Florida, where he helped attract nearly $400 million in capital investment. He replaces longtime CEO Harvey Schmitt, who announced his retirement in October.

Eastern

Company led by Vertex Rail CEO files for bankruptcy

May 22, 2015

(Greater Wilmington Business Journal)

A Massachusetts-based company led by Vertex Rail CEO Don Croteau filed for bankruptcy earlier this month. Vertex Fab & Design designs and makes components for NASA and companies such as GE Hitachi. Vertex Rail announced last year it will create 1,300 jobs in a rail-car manufacturing facility in Wilmington.

Medicaid director named chancellor of UNC Pembroke

May 22, 2015

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

Robin Cummings will become chancellor of UNC Pembroke in July. Cummings, the state Medicaid director and a cardiothoracic surgeon, will succeed Kyle Carter, who is retiring after five years in the post.

New Hanover Regional begins ER expansion

May 21, 2015

(StarNews, Wilmington)

New Hanover Regional Medical Center begins Thursday a renovation project that will double the number of beds to 108 in its 17th Street Emergency Department in Wilmington. The project, which will increase the department's space from 17,800 to 48,000 square feet, is expected to be complete by spring 2017.

Asbury Carbons to create 25 jobs in Robeson County

May 19, 2015

(The Fayetteville Observer)

Asbury Carbons will invest $8 million in a Lumberton manufacturing plant and will create 25 jobs over the next three years. The New Jersey-based company processes graphite and other carbons and materials for ceramics, LED and other manufacturers.

AG Cooper sues FCC over Wilson broadband ruling

May 18, 2015

(WRAL TechWire)

N.C. Attorney General Roy Cooper has filed a lawsuit against the Federal Communications Commission over the agency's decision to allow the city of Wilson to expand its municipal broadband network outside the city limits (Statewide, March).

Landowners refile lawsuit against Brunswick developer

May 14, 2015

(StarNews, Wilmington)

A group of about 115 landowners refiled a lawsuit claiming a local developer used overvalued appraisals to inflate the value of 62 lots in Brunswick County. The same lawsuit was dropped in April 2014.

Wilmington's nCino partners with Deloitte

May 13, 2015

(Greater Wilmington Business Journal)

Deloitte Digital, a division of Deloitte Consulting, will add nCino's Bank Operating System to its portfolio of services offered to banking and financial clients across the world. Built on the Salesforce platform, nCino's software helps lenders trim paperwork, increase efficiency and reduce operating costs.

2,600-home community proposed for Pender County

May 11, 2015

(Greater Wilmington Business Journal)

A development group called Lane's Ferry Landing wants to build a mixed-use community on 988 acres in Pender County with up to 2,600 residential units, a marina, retail shops and offices. County officials are expected to consider the master development plan later this month and in June.

Mountaire will fire workers seen in undercover video

May 8, 2015

(The Fayetteville Observer)

Mountaire Farms said it will fire workers who were seen abusing chickens at its Robeson County plant in a video released by animal-rights group Compassion Over Killing.

ECU graduates first dental class

May 8, 2015

(The Daily Reflector)

ECU will graduate the first class of students from its School of Dentistry this week. The school operates community-service learning centers across the state to provide training for its students and dental care for underserved areas.

Animal-rights group alleges abuse at Robeson plant

May 7, 2015

(The Fayetteville Observer)

A group called Compassion Over Killing released a video Monday alleging that workers at a Mountaire Farms plant in Robeson County illegally abused chickens. The group had someone obtain a job at the plant to act as an undercover investigator.

UNC medical school considers Wilmington branch campus

May 7, 2015

(StarNews, Wilmington)

The UNC School of Medicine is looking at opening a campus at New Hanover Regional Medical Center in Wilmington. The school has similar campuses in Asheville and Charlotte.

Wilmington tourism leader predicts strong season

May 6, 2015

(Greater Wilmington Business Journal)

A tourism-industry official said the Wilmington area has seen a steady increase in tourism spending in recent years and predicts that trend will continue. "We believe that we could very well see our best summer yet," Kim Hufham said. Hufham is CEO of the Wilmington and Beaches Convention & Visitors Bureau.

Wilmington's N2 Publishing added 80 jobs in first quarter

May 5, 2015

(Greater Wilmington Business Journal)

N2 Publishing added 80 employees in the first quarter, including 35 in Wilmington, and moved to a new 32,000-square-foot headquarters. The company produces customized neighborhood newsletters.

Wilmington Downtown wants more time to consider MSD

May 4, 2015

(Greater Wilmington Business Journal)

Wilmington Downtown wants to extend a May 1 deadline to submit a recommendation on the creation of a municipal service district. A task force that has studied the potential MSD, which would assess special taxes for services beyond what the city provides, says it needs more time to meet with downtown residents and develop plans.

Film industry spent $241M in NC in 2014

May 1, 2015

(StarNews, Wilmington)

Film and TV productions spent more than $241 million in North Carolina in 2014 and are eligible to receive $60 million in state incentives. More than half the expenses – $137 million – represent productions shot in Brunswick, New Hanover and Pender counties. Fox's Sleepy Hollow was the biggest spender, with expenses totaling more than $43 million.

Spring lawsuit moved to federal court

May 1, 2015

(Greater Wilmington Business Journal)

A lawsuit filed by former Cape Fear Community College President Ted Spring will now be heard in a federal District Court instead of New Hanover Superior Court. The suit alleges college trustees forced Spring to resign in January. He is seeking reinstatement and at least $25,000 in damages.

Study ranks Wilmington a top place to start a business

April 30, 2015

(StarNews, Wilmington)

Wilmington ranked No. 2 among best places in the country to start a business, according to personal-finance website NerdWallet.com. The study looked at 183 metro areas with 15,000 or more businesses and populations greater than 250,000. Wilmington earned high marks for its growing population, strong tourism industry and high volume of businesses. Boulder, Colo., was the top-ranked city.

Brunswick County home sales outpacing Wilmington area

April 29, 2015

(Greater Wilmington Business Journal)

Sales of single-family homes in Brunswick County increased 25.4% in the first quarter, compared with the same period a year ago. Sales were boosted by retirees and second-home buyers looking to move closer to the coast, according to a local realtor. The average sales price increased 17.2% to $248,681.

'A Chef's Life' wins Daytime Emmy

April 28, 2015

(Kinston Free Press)

A Chef's Life, the PBS television series directed by Pink Hill native and Durham resident Cynthia Hill and featuring Kinston chef Vivian Howard, won a Daytime Emmy award for Outstanding Directing in a Lifestyle/Culinary/Travel Program.