VOL. 132 | NO. 81 | Monday, April 24, 2017
Sediver Opens $15M Manufacturing Facility in West Memphis
Sediver USA has cut the ribbon on its $15 million facility in West Memphis, where the company will manufacture toughened glass insulators for high-voltage transmission lines.
Peter Baumgartner, chairman of Sediver USA and CEO of its Luxembourg-based parent company, the Seves Group, was joined by Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson, Clean Line Energy Partners president Michael Skelly and Seves Group chairman Joakim Olsson at the Friday, April 21, event.
“We see clear signs that America’s transmission and distribution utilities are ready to invest in high-quality components to ensure reliable power to their customers,” Baumgartner said. “Sediver is committed to providing best-in-class products to our customers, and having a state-of- the-art manufacturing facility located in the U.S. gives us the ability to do that.”
Initial plans call for Sediver to hire up to 75 employees for the West Memphis plant, but it has the potential to expand beyond that.
The West Memphis facility is Paris, France-based Sediver’s first production investment in the U.S. in nearly two decades, and it is expected to have a $3.5 million annual impact on the local economy in payroll.
“I am pleased Sediver has made the decision to invest in Arkansas,” Hutchinson said. “Our talented workforce combined with our low cost of doing business and logistical advantages make Arkansas the perfect place to build a high-tech manufacturing facility.”
Sediver is a global manufacturer of overhead line insulation technology for transmission and distribution lines with more than 900 employees in factories, laboratories and sales offices in North and South America, Europe and China.
The demand for its insulators could grow as the proposed Clean Line direct-current high-voltage transmission lines shift from development to construction. The $2.5 billion Plains & Eastern Clean Line will ship renewable wind power to Arkansas and Tennessee from western Oklahoma.
– Patrick Lantrip
Renasant Wins Federal Approvals for Metropolitan Bank Merger
Renasant Bank’s parent company has received all the necessary federal bank regulatory approvals needed to complete its merger with the parent company of Metropolitan Bank, Renasant has announced.
That includes approval from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.
Both companies announced their plan to merge in January. The deal is still subject to approval by Metropolitan’s stockholders and the satisfaction of other customary closing conditions, with the whole thing expected to be completed in the third quarter.
Redbirds Turning Back the Clock to the 1990s
Put on your Starter jacket and a slap bracelet, grab your Discman, and head over to AutoZone Park on Saturday, April 29, for ’90s Night, highlighted by an appearance by Mr. Belding of “Saved by the Bell” fame.
The Redbirds will be celebrating everything that made the ’90s so memorable, and the day also includes postgame fireworks that will be set to ’90s music. Game time is 6:35 p.m., and tickets start at $9.
Dennis Haskins, who played principal Richard Belding on “Saved by the Bell,” will be signing autographs on the concourse from the second through fourth innings. Mr. Belding will also announce the starting lineups, his “morning announcements,” and he will throw a ceremonial first pitch.
Fans can purchase a ticket for “Detention with Mr. Belding at The Max,” which includes a game ticket in a suite, a diner-style menu inspired by “The Max” near Bayside High featuring burgers, fries, onion rings, tots, soda (including Orange Fanta), and an ice cream sundae bar, and a private meet-and-greet and photo op with Mr. Belding.
In homage to the ’90s Nickelodeon show “All That,” the Redbirds will have a… good burger… deal at the concession stand behind Section 101, featuring a burger, fries and a 12-ounce canned orange soda for $9.
The upcoming homestand also includes All-You-Can-Eat Thursday featuring wings on April 27, Silky O’Sullivan’s Irish Heritage Night on April 28, and Bark In The Ballpark, with Prairie Farms Ice Cream Sunday and kids run the bases, on April 30.
Visit memphisredbirds.com for information on upcoming promotions as well as single-game tickets and ticket mini-memberships.
– Don Wade
Start Co. Teams Hit Key Business Milestones
Six of Start Co.’s alumni teams have hit major business milestones recently.
The teams participated in the summer accelerator programs in 2013, 2014 and 2015 as well as participating in post-acceleration activities to continue to build their businesses.
• Graph Story, which provides graph databases, applications and solutions as a service, has raised more than $1 million to date and reached break-even. It’s currently working toward its next major round of investment capital.
• Cabsolutely, which connects taxi fleets with passengers via a mobile app and digital dispatching, has raised $600,000 to date.
• Preteckt, a diagnostic tool for the trucking industry, has raised $750,000 to date and is deployed in 127 trucks and eight pilot fleets. It’s using the funding to solidify major collaborations in 2017 and recently received funding from the 500 Startups Seed Fund.
• Front Door, an interface to the full-service real estate industry for home sellers, has raised $415,000 and has reached break-even. Front Door says it’s saved homeowners nearly $2 million in commissions to date and is expanding nationally.
• Boosterville, a card-linked marketing and fundraising platform that connects merchants to cause-driven buyers, has raised $830,000 as of January to scale up its business and revenue.
• Code Crew, an organization that develops courses, workshops, outreach programs and open source curriculum to make computer science education affordable and accessible, has raised $350,000 in grant money and earned more than $100,000 in revenue since its founding in 2015.
Programming for the 2017 Summer of Acceleration will begin at Start Co. on May 1.
– Andy Meek
Galloway Home Extends Lease With Trezevant
The Mary Galloway Home has signed a five-year lease extension with Trezevant, located at 177 N. Highland St.
For more than 120 years, the Mary Galloway Home has provided a residence, comfort and support for retirement-aged women with financial needs. It occupies the second floor of Trezevant Terrace, the assisted living facility on Trezevant's campus. As part of the continued partnership, Trezevant will remain responsible for the home's health care management.
"We are very pleased to extend our relationship with Trezevant," said Beverly Williams, Mary Galloway Home board president. "Trezevant has been home for our ladies for the past 10 years and we hope to remain here for a long time."
– Daily News staff