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VOL. TMN-7 | NO. 47 | Saturday, November 15, 2014
Weekly Issue

New Look

Memphis Tigers begin life after the guards

A new season brings optimism – or marketing, if you want to be cynical about it – but also some reflective truth-telling.

The American Athletic Conference

Coming in the Door: East Carolina, Tulane and Tulsa. Going out the Door: Louisville and Rutgers.

EMPHASIS Financial Services

Lending a Hand

Lenders look for inner-city entrepreneurs to help fund and grow

Mid-South Drug Testing president Kelly Dobbins is the kind of entrepreneur banks and lenders are increasingly making it a point to seek out.

Bank of Bartlett Adds Staff Following Growth

Bank of Bartlett has seen a resurgence in loan demand over the last several months, something that’s prompted the Bartlett-based community bank to expand its headcount.

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Memphis, TN
Wind: Southeast at 3.5 mph
Humidity: 59%


Memphis Grizzlies and BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee will host a family-friendly event Tuesday, Nov. 18, from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. near the giant Grizzlies jersey in Tom Lee Park Downtown. Attendees can register for a Fitness Trail Passport, and those who complete all six stations will be in the running for prizes, including tickets to Grizzlies opening night and autographed items. Visit getriverfit.com.

more events »

Trustmark’s Neal Finds Plenty to Like in CRE

Trustmark National Bank senior vice president Rick Neal, who manages the bank’s commercial real estate efforts for the Memphis region, came to the bank in 2012 for a couple of reasons.

Wunderlich Adds to Equity Capital Markets

The last few weeks have been a time of expansion and growth for Memphis-based investment firm Wunderlich Securities Inc.

Red Door Wealth Management Launches App

Banks tend to be the ones most frequently jumping into the smartphone app game among financial services companies. But that doesn’t mean other such firms don’t see plenty to like about putting all those layers of functionality into their clients’ hands.

Editorial: Changing the Blurred Lines of College Athletics

At the outset of another Tiger basketball season, a reminder of a past season that’s officially not on the record books of the NCAA surfaced to talk about that season at the University of Memphis.


This week in Memphis history: November 14-20

2013: Justin Timberlake at FedExForum in a day that saw Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr. proclaim it as Justin Timberlake day and don a bowtie along with numerous other Memphians. It was Timberlake’s first Memphis show since 2007 and 1,000 free bow ties were distributed.

Staying Power

Visible Music College prepares for 15th anniversary

Visible Music College has come a long way from the building in Lakeland that once housed a catfish restaurant where the school launched almost 15 years ago.

$70 Million Building Permit Filed for Graceland Hotel

Elvis Presley Enterprises is ready to shake, rattle and roll on its planned hotel near Graceland.

Target Eyeing Memphis Area for Distribution Center

Target is eyeing the Memphis area for an industrial project that could create up to 600 jobs, according to multiple sources.

Hillwood to Launch Two Spec Buildings in DeSoto County

A Texas-based development firm will start turning dirt soon on a massive new business park in DeSoto County.

Collierville Chamber CEO Stepping Down

Fran Persechini has decided to step down as president and CEO of the Collierville Chamber of Commerce after spending 20 years with the organization.

Barbic Counters Achievement School District Opposition

Tennessee Achievement School District superintendent Chris Barbic on Wednesday responded for the first time to vocal opposition to the state-run district.

National Expansion

Amy Howard at Home paints make way to Ace Hardware

As Amy Howard built her high-end, luxury furniture manufacturing business in Memphis over 23 years, the entrepreneur developed her own lines of paints and finishes for the pieces.

Ignite Memphis Returns With More Rapid-Fire Ideas

Ignite Memphis returns next week with what organizers say looks to be the biggest Ignite event ever, on track for another sellout.

UTHSC Professor Receives Prostate Cancer Grant

Ormeloxifene. If you know the name at all, you know it as a birth-control drug. But that drug is now being studied to see if it can be repurposed to inhibit growth of advanced-state prostate cancer cells and used as a therapeutic agent to manage and treat advanced prostate cancer.

Wiseacre Expands, Adds Public Tours

Memphis-based Wiseacre Brewing Co., which opened in August 2013, is expanding into North Mississippi and West Tennessee by introducing its three year-round beers as well as a limited supply of specialty brews into neighboring markets.

Historic Brewery Sold and Ready for Development

The long-vacant Tennessee Brewery Downtown has been sold for $825,000 and could soon see new life.

Utensil University

UTHSC program gives students an edge in dinner interviews

It’s competitive out there. A new graduate, even one with great grades and real-world experience, still might have to make an additional good impression on a potential employer.

Shelby County Mortgage Volume Up 2 Percent

When Patriot Bank executive vice president Keith Barger surveys the local mortgage lending landscape, he sees demand improving and homebuyers increasingly flocking – successfully – to bargains in the housing market.

Work Begins on Big River Crossing

Work began Monday, Nov. 10, on the Harahan Bridge boardwalk in a Downtown conference room as the contractor on the $17.5 million project, OCCI Inc. of Fulton, Mo., met with city leaders and explained the construction plan to come for what is now called the “Big River Crossing.”

Ridesharing Could Get City OK

Legislation making its way through the Memphis City Council would allow transportation network companies such as Lyft and Uber to operate under the law.

Scripps Sees Newspaper Revenues Decline

The newspaper unit of The E.W. Scripps Co., parent company of The Commercial Appeal, barely made enough money to cover expenses in the third quarter.

New Lawmakers Trace Likely Abortion Legislation

The two newest state legislators from Shelby County say they hope to find ways to work across party lines and even with the Shelby County Commission and the Memphis City Council.

Thinking Independent

City & State to support local artisans from Broad Avenue home

The origin story, if it could be called that, for many of the shops and restaurants in the burgeoning Broad Avenue Arts District tends to start the same way.

FedEx Founder: Expect More Automation

FedEx founder, chairman and CEO Fred Smith is pretty confident that robotics, automation and perhaps drones will play an increasingly large role in the FedEx of the future.

Overton Square Highlights Commercial Real Estate Positives

The old owners of Overton Square had a plan to remove existing local tenants and retailers and replace them with national retailers.

Riverside Drive Bike Lane Critics Remain

In the five months since the southbound auto traffic lanes on Riverside Drive between Beale Street and Georgia Avenue were turned into bicycle and pedestrian lanes, bicycle usage of the lanes has risen from an average of 400 a month to more than 600 a month.

Palazzolo Prepares to Lead Germantown

Germantown Mayor-elect Mike Palazzolo was surprised that the mayor’s race became as hard-fought as it was.

Harahan Boardwalk Construction Begins

It was about four years ago that a group of Memphians flew to Omaha, Neb., to talk with Union Pacific railroad executives about building a bicycle and pedestrian boardwalk on the northern side of the Harahan Railroad Bridge across the Mississippi River.

Hook, Line & Sinker

Bass Pro Shops: The one that didn’t get away

In May, when the first guests at Big Cypress Lodge inside The Pyramid open the French doors in their rooms, they’ll be able to walk onto a patio overlooking the sprawling interior of the Bass Pro Shops store and attraction, including a re-creation of Delta cypress swamp and 600,000 gallons of water features.

Kyle Offers First Take on County Commission Dispute

Less than two months after he left the Tennessee Legislature to become a Chancery Court judge, Jim Kyle found himself in familiar territory.

I Choose Memphis: Scott Wilson

“I Choose Memphis” spotlights Memphians who are passionate about calling this community home. New Memphis Institute provides the profiles.

Shelby County Home Sales Rise 10 Percent in October

Home sales activity in Memphis and Shelby County certainly wasn’t spooky in October, with sales up 10 percent compared to the same month a year ago.


Bowl-Eligible Tigers Look for More This Season

It was just another score on the bottom-of-the-TV-screen scrawl: Memphis 16, Temple 13.

Watching Kobe’s Empty-the-Clip Tour

For those first few minutes, Kobe Bryant was toying with us. He passed the ball and he passed up shots – open and otherwise.

How’s Mettenberger Doing? Same as Other Rookies

For those who are still watching the Tennessee Titans and hoping that something can go right before the 2014 season is up, it could be a long wait.

Vols Unlikely to Repeat November 2013 Collapse

KNOXVILLE – University of Tennessee football coach Butch Jones doesn’t have to remind his team about the disappointing fade last November.


McGuire Joins Insight Risk Management

Myles McGuire has joined Insight Risk Management LLC as a corporate consultant. In his new role, he will consult with commercial clients and place them with the appropriate coverages to protect their business from risk and liability issues.


Highland Row Developer Applies for $6.7 Million Permit

387 S. Highland St., Memphis, TN 38111, Permit Amount: $6.7 million -
Indianapolis-based developer Milhaus Ventures has applied for another building permit for the long-awaited Highland Row project near the University of Memphis.


Entrepreneur Spirit Drives Owners of The Attic

She was young and had a nice corporate career going straight out of school. So a lot of people would have traded places with Alexandra Nicole, who spent six years as a sales rep at International Paper.


The ‘Meh’ Generation

ALL THIS IS GETTING OLD. Mitch McConnell is 117. Across the aisle, Harry Reid is 132, same age as Nancy Pelosi over in the House, and John Boehner is 98.

Secrets to a Successful Military Transition

This week is a special one. With Veterans Day this past Tuesday, it has been important to honor our military personnel. In addition to thanking them for their service, former military members face an issue many people overlook: underemployment.

Ask Your Parent the Difficult Questions

Ray’s take: The whole idea of talking to your elderly parent about their finances and estate planning may make you feel slightly ill.

It’s Art

“But is it __?” This clue is used in dozens of crossword puzzles. The answer is ART. At Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, tucked away in the Northwest Arkansas hills, the question’s answer is “You’d better believe it!” My heart sings to know that Crystal Bridges, open now since Nov. 11, 2011, is a major world player in its field.

'Success is a Lousy Teacher'

In sales, as in life, many a person throws in the towel after failure, not realizing that failure is actually an inevitable outcome of the innovative. Thomas Edison is reported to have had more than 1,000 failures before finally inventing a practical electric light bulb. Aptly, he said, “Many of life's failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.”

Southaven Rises on Memphis’ Tide

While our country's economy seems to be making a turn in the right direction, cost of living remains one of the top reasons that individuals and families choose to live where they do.

How to Solicit Gifts for a Nonprofit

It's time to ask, but just exactly what do you say? As the year comes to a close nonprofits look to board members, volunteers and donors to ask their friends, family members and colleagues to consider making a meaningful gift. You may have the internal fortitude to overcome your fear of asking (read, fear of rejection), but what exactly do you say and do?

Law Says ‘Promptly’ Address Public Records Requests

A news reporter in Nashville called me recently when a public information officer with the Metropolitan Development and Housing Agency refused to release a document that had been voted upon a few days earlier by a subcommittee of the public agency’s board of directors.

Motivating the Corporate Elephant to Innovate

VF Corp. created a series of Bright Spots to augment their product mix and sell the innovations inside the company to ensure the innovation eggs hatched in the market. The real goal was to change the culture to accept innovation.


Keeping Promises

Can Tennessee’s community college system honor free tuition program?

With more than 50,000 high school seniors applying for free community college tuition and fees through Gov. Bill Haslam’s Tennessee Promise, it’s reasonable to wonder if Tennessee’s community colleges have the infrastructure – including classroom space and instructors – to handle such an influx of new students.

Lottery Champion Cohen Not Pleased With Haslam's ‘Game-Changer’

To say Congressman Steve Cohen is unenthusiastic about the Tennessee Promise is an understatement.

Fewer Freshmen No Worry for Greeks at Four-Year Schools

MTSU and UT-Knoxville officials see limited impact, if any, from Tennessee Promise on the schools’ fraternities and sororities.

State Needs 2,000 More Tennessee Promise Mentors

Tennessee is about 2,000 short of the 9,400 mentors needed to cover the number of students who applied for the Tennessee Promise, Gov. Haslam said recently.

Enjoy Low Interest Rates While They Last

In what has become expected in this post-Recession boom, home sales continue to set records each month with no end in sight, based on October sales figures from the Greater Nashville Association of Realtors.

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PROPERTY SALES 98 238 15,862
MORTGAGES 122 284 18,332
BUILDING PERMITS 137 452 32,966
BANKRUPTCIES 62 178 10,191

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The Memphis News: Business, politics, and the public interest.