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VOL. 127 | NO. 43 | Friday, March 02, 2012

Daily Digest

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Building Plastics Property Financed for $4.6M

Memphis Sharpe Investors LLC has filed a $4.6 million trust deed through RAIT CMBS Conduit II LLC for 1720 Cherokee Blvd., 1730 Cherokee Blvd. and 3263 Sharpe Ave. in Cherokee Commercial Center.

The property houses Building Plastics Inc., which operates its corporate headquarters and distribution center at the location.

The larger parcel, 3263 Sharpe, contains a 174,810-square-foot, Class B warehouse built in 1986. It sits on 10.8 acres on the southeast corner of Sharpe and Cherokee, and the Shelby County Assessor of Property’s 2011 appraisal was $3.7 million.

The smaller parcel, 1720-1730 Cherokee, contains a 9,750-square-foot, Class C warehouse built in 1985, according to the assessor.

It sits on 1.6 acres due south of the larger Sharpe parcel, and its 2011 appraisal was $205,000.

BPI specializes in ceramic tile, counter services and supplies, flooring and carpet, among other things, according to its website.

Besides its Memphis headquarters, it has a Nashville office, as well as ones in Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas.

Sharpe received the property via quitclaim from the city-county Industrial Development Board in 2005. Prior to that, the property had been part of a payment-in-lieu-of-taxes agreement with the IDB.

Source: The Daily News Online & Chandler Reports

– Daily News staff

FedEx Takes 6th Spot on Admired Cos. List

FedEx Corp. is No. 6 on Fortune magazine’s list of the most admired companies in the world.

The annual ranking by the business magazine puts the Memphis-based company two positions higher than it was on the 2011 list.

The rankings are based on nine attributes that deal with a company’s reputation and performance.

FedEx has been in the top 20 of the list since 2001.

– Bill Dries

Fred's Reports Increased February Sales

Memphis-based Fred’s Inc. has reported total sales of $159 million for the four-week fiscal month of February, the first month of fiscal 2012.

Fred’s total sales for the month, which ended Feb. 25, increased 4 percent from $153 million in February 2011.

Comparable store sales for the month declined 0.7 percent compared to an increase of 0.9 percent in the same period last year.

Fred’s operates 700 discount general merchandise stores, including 21 franchised stores, in the southeastern United States.

– Taylor Shoptaw

Janna Hacker Speech Svcs. Opens in Germantown

Janna Hacker and Associates Speech Language Pathology Services has opened an office at 8596 Farmington Blvd., suite 1, in Germantown.

JHA, which has been in business four years, has five speech language pathologists, an occupational therapist and an oral myofuctional therapist. The therapists work with children and adults, and provide services at the office and at private schools in the Memphis area.

Therapy services for children improve each child’s speech-language skills, social skills or feeding skills. Services include evaluations, therapy sessions and social group therapy sessions.

Adult services include voice, articulation and language therapy.

– Sarah Baker

Minority Biz Council Hosts 'Strategic Fits' Seminar

Memphis Minority Business Council (MMBC) will host a quarterly training seminar called “Strategic Fits: Building Successful Joint Ventures & Strategic Alliances,” Thursday, March 8, from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. at its offices, 158 Madison Ave., suite 300.

The seminar will focus on minority businesses seeking to grow their enterprises in a competitive market and corporations seeking key suppliers who can provide cost savings. By partnering, minority businesses can achieve cost savings, expand their footprints, generate economies of scale, increase production capacity, pool resources, commercialize new products or facilitate entry into new markets.

– Aisling Maki

Harding Univ. Wins Research Challenge

The CFA Societies of Arkansas, Memphis and Mississippi recently announced that Harding University won the local competition in the CFA Institute’s Research Challenge. CFA stands for chartered financial analyst.

Harding now advances in April to the Americas regional challenge, where it will compete with universities from Canada, the U.S. and South America.

The CFA Institute Research Challenge offers students the opportunity to learn from leading industry experts and their peers from the world’s top business schools. This year, more than 100 CFA Institute member societies will host local competitions with more than 2,500 students from more than 500 universities worldwide.

Sponsors of the local Mid-South Research Challenge were the CFA Societies of Arkansas, Memphis and Mississippi, as well as FactSet.

– Andy Meek

EdR to Build Phoenix-Area Collegiate Housing

Memphis-based apartment-focused real estate investment trust EdR has executed agreements with Concord Eastridge to develop, own and manage a $52 million mixed-use collegiate housing community adjacent to the Phoenix Biomedical Campus and three blocks from Arizona State University’s downtown campus.

EdR will be the majority owner and will manage the community upon its summer 2013 completion. Scottsdale, Ariz.-based Concord Eastridge is developing and constructing the housing, which will be owned jointly by the two companies.

Construction is expected to begin next week.

The development will include 609 beds within 326 units One of the residential buildings will offer 7,500 square feet of retail space at the street level.

– Sarah Baker

Construction Spending Slips in January

A sharp drop in commercial building projects caused a slight decline in construction spending in January. But the dip comes after previous figures were revised much higher.

Construction spending edged down 0.1 percent in January, the Commerce Department reported Thursday. That is the first drop since July. It follows a 1.4 percent increase in December and a big rise of 1.9 percent in November. November’s figure was revised up from 0.4 percent.

Construction of factories, hotels and power plants all fell sharply in January, pushing down nonresidential construction by the most in a year. Government construction spending also fell. Federal construction spending dropped while state and local spending ticked up.

Spending on residential construction rose 1.8 percent, driven by a big gain in single-family home building.

Overall construction spending dipped to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $827 billion, down slightly from December.

Last month, December’s construction spending total was reported as $816.4 billion, but that was pushed up by the big revision to November’s figures. Large revisions to construction spending aren’t unusual.

– The Associated Press

Unemployment Applications Dip to Four-Year Low

The number of people seeking unemployment benefits fell last week to the lowest point in four years, a further sign that the U.S. job market is improving.

A seasonally adjusted 351,000 people sought unemployment aid, down from 353,000 the previous week, the Labor Department said Thursday. That matches the four-year low reached three weeks ago. The improving numbers show that steadily fewer people are being laid off and suggest that some companies are stepping up hiring.

The four-week average of applications, which smooths out weekly fluctuations in the data, also fell last week, to 354,000. That’s also the lowest in four years.

– The Associated Press

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RECORD TOTALS DAY WEEK YEAR
PROPERTY SALES 114 332 10,554
MORTGAGES 119 412 13,739
FORECLOSURE NOTICES 12 80 2,724
BUILDING PERMITS 522 915 25,222
BANKRUPTCIES 80 264 10,156
BUSINESS LICENSES 16 78 3,814
UTILITY CONNECTIONS 92 430 14,987
MARRIAGE LICENSES 15 83 3,250

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