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VOL. 127 | NO. 36 | Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Daily Digest

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Downtown Condos Sell for $1.5M in Foreclosure

Community Bank, North Mississippi, has bought back nine condominiums and about 2,700 square feet of commercial space at 92 S. Main St. and 96 S. Main St. in One One O’ Six Lofts Condominiums at a foreclosure sale, paying $1.5 million for the properties.

Built in 2007, the building has 21,621 square feet comprising 18 townhomes and 2,660 square feet of commercial space, according to a master deed filed the year it was built. Of that, the space foreclosed upon includes nine townhomes totaling 11,453 square feet and all the commercial square footage.

The condos and commercial space went into foreclosure proceedings after previous owner BJN LLC defaulted on a September 2010 loan for $1.4 million through the north Mississippi bank.

The Feb. 10 sale was presided over by substitute trustee Hugh H. Armistead on behalf of Community Bank, North Mississippi.

Source: The Daily News Online & Chandler Reports

– Daily News staff

Accredo Health Sees 2011 Record Growth

Memphis-based Accredo Health Group, a provider of specialty pharmaceuticals, continued its record growth in fourth quarter 2011, with revenue growth of 28.3 percent to $3.8 billion. Accredo’s full-year 2011 revenues increased 18.5 percent to a record $13.4 billion.

Increases in manufacturer brand pricing, broader use of specialty products and the impact of recently introduced drugs contributed to that growth, according to the company. Product categories that experienced the highest levels of revenue growth include those related to multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, oncology and hepatitis.

Accredo employs 5,000 individuals at more than 80 locations, with the largest pool – about 1,800 – based in Memphis.

Accredo’s parent company is New Jersey-based Medco Health Solutions Inc., which on Tuesday reported Q4 net revenues of nearly $19 billion, representing a 12.2 percent increase over Q4 2010. Medco’s full-year 2011 net revenues increased 6.2 percent over 2010 to a record $70.1 billion.

– Aisling Maki

Grubb & Ellis Files for Ch. 11 Bankruptcy

Grubb & Ellis Co. says it has filed for bankruptcy protection in a bid to stave off creditors amid mounting debt.

The Santa Ana, Calif.-based company operates offices nationwide, including ones in Memphis, Nashville and Chattanooga.

Grubb & Ellis also said Tuesday, Feb. 21, it has arranged to sell most of its assets to the parent of rival commercial real estate services company Newmark Knight Frank.

The proposed sale to BGC Partners Inc. will require court approval as part of Grubb & Ellis’ Chapter 11 bankruptcy process.

The company filed for bankruptcy protection Monday in the Southern District of New York.

BGC also has agreed to provide some of the financing needed to keep Grubb & Ellis operating while in bankruptcy.

In the filing, Grubb & Ellis listed $150 million in assets and $167 million in debt as of the end of last year.

– The Associated Press

MemphisWeather.Net App Upgraded

Version 2.0 of the MemphisWeather.net (MWN) smartphone app has been released with an upgraded interactive StormView Radar interface.

The interface more than doubles the geographic area covered and lets users zoom down to near-street level to see details.

Another feature in the new version of the app is the ability for users to upgrade to StormWatch+, a push notification-based system.

Unlike traditional systems that alert entire counties even when the affected area is only a small part of that county, StormWatch+ only warns those in and around the storm’s path. Using the National Weather Service’s storm-based warning system, StormWatch+ compares a user’s pre-determined location to the warned area using computer mapping.

The MemphisWeather.net app can be found in the Android Market and the iTunes App Store. MWN’s app developer is Ben Deming.

– Andy Meek

Commission Approves Pidgeon Park Option

Shelby County Commissioners approved an option agreement Monday, Feb. 20, between the Memphis and Shelby County Port Commission and Illinois Central Railroad for the railroad to buy 800 acres in the Frank C. Pidgeon Industrial Park. The 10-year option sets a price of $12,000 an acre to develop a Memphis Logistics Park. More than 80 percent of the infrastructure cost would be paid by Canadian National Railway Co., the parent company of Illinois Central.

The commission also approved a resolution that formally removes county government from the Public Building Authority governing The Pyramid. And it approved on the first of three readings an ordinance that removes the county from the appointed commission that governs the Memphis Cook Convention Center. The city of Memphis bought out the county’s interests in The Pyramid in 2009 and in the convention center in 2011.

– Bill Dries

Madison Line Records to Celebrate Launch

Madison Line Records, a Memphis-based, nonprofit record label, will celebrate its launch party showcasing the label’s six artists March 1, at 7:27 p.m. at Visible Music College, 200 Madison Ave.

The event is free and open to the public and will highlight performances by Until June, Cayerio & Speakerboxx, J&R, Jo, She Said and Visible Worship Band.

The Madison Line Café also will celebrate its opening at the label’s studios and offices at 287 Madison Ave.

Live music will be provided in the café by local musician Charveymac, from 7:27 p.m. to 10 p.m., and tours of the studios, café and offices will be available.

Madison Line Records signed its first six artists in the last 60 days and represents artists who span genres that include pop, rock, hip-hop and metal. The label offers in-studio recording, production, merchandising, booking, management and artist development services.

– Taylor Shoptaw

Gov't Seeks Smaller Role for Fannie, Freddie

The government regulator for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac has submitted a plan to Congress that would shrink the mortgage giants’ role in the housing market.

The Federal Housing Finance Agency’s proposal for a leaner Fannie and Freddie was released Tuesday, Feb. 21, and would mean fewer mortgages are backed by the government. That could make buying a home more expensive because it would lead to higher interest rates. Under the plan, Fannie and Freddie could increase its prices to guarantee loans and establish agreements with private investors to take on added credit risk.

The Obama administration last year laid out three options to wind down the government’s support for the mortgage market slowly. Rather than making a single recommendation, the administration left the decision to Congress.

Fannie and Freddie buy mortgage loans from primary lenders, pool them, and sell them with a guarantee that investors will be paid even if borrowers default. The agencies have helped people buy homes at affordable interest rates.

But the two nearly collapsed in 2008, after the subprime mortgage market collapsed and defaults and foreclosures piled up. The government seized them in September 2008.

The bailouts of Fannie and Freddie have so far cost taxpayers roughly $150 billion, and that figure continues to grow.

– The Associated Press

State Department Names First Chief Economist

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is appointing the State Department’s first chief economist as the Obama administration tries to fully integrate the agency into its attempts to promote domestic job growth.

Clinton was expected to name Heidi Crebo-Rediker, a top aide to Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman John Kerry, to the post on Tuesday, Feb. 21, according to officials.

Clinton wants American diplomats to do more to advance U.S. economic interests overseas and is seeking input from the private sector on how they can help.

– The Associated Press

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PROPERTY SALES 119 482 10,051
MORTGAGES 119 497 11,811
BUILDING PERMITS 268 1,056 21,366
BANKRUPTCIES 50 263 6,700

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