VOL. 10 | NO. 51 | Saturday, December 16, 2017
Central BBQ to Open 4th Memphis Restaurant
Central BBQ LLC announced Thursday, Dec. 14, that it will open its fourth Memphis area restaurant along the Poplar Avenue corridor.
The new restaurant at 6201 Poplar Ave. will occupy space that formerly housed LYFE Kitchen and is expected to open in late spring 2018. The site is located between Poplar and Park avenues just east of Ridgeway Road in the heart of Memphis’ Class A office market.
“After a metro-area search, we decided this space on Poplar would allow us to broaden the reach of Central into East Memphis and Germantown, while providing an opportunity to institute systems to expand our presence outside the Memphis market,” Webb Wilson, president of Central BBQ LLC, said in a release.
Craig Blondis, co-founder of Central, said the new location will offer the same “award-winning barbecue served with a side of Southern hospitality that Memphians and out-of-towners deserve and have come to expect.”
Last May, Central BBQ entered into an agreement with Kemmons Wilson Cos. to expand its brand and begin opening its first stores outside the Memphis market.
Central has been in business for 15 years and is a perennial winner of barbecue contests.
– Daily News staff
Popular Dessert Shop Opening Second Location
La Michoacana Ice Cream & Paletas has announced it will be opening a second location in Cordova at 830 N. Germantown Parkway.
The popular dessert shop is currently building out 3,200 square feet in The Germantown Shops in Cordova, which is owned by Loeb Properties Inc.
Aaron Petree, Loeb’s vice president of brokerage, represented the landlord in the lease.
La Michoacana currently operates a location at 4091 Summer Ave. that serves a variety of handmade ice creams and South American dishes, including paletas, élote, Dorilocos, horchata and nachos.
The owners expect the second location to open in the early part of 2018.
Loeb Properties has two remaining 1,600-square-foot bays available for lease in The Germantown Shops.
– Patrick Lantrip
Comcast Awards Nonprofits Grants Totaling $130,000
Five local nonprofit organizations received grants totaling $130,000 Wednesday, Dec. 13, from the Comcast Foundation at an event hosted by the local office of the telecom giant.
Latino Memphis, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Memphis, Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Mid-South, the Urban League of Memphis and the United Way of the Mid-South will use the grants to support technology initiatives designed to expand digital literacy and address the digital divide for Memphis-area youths.
“At the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Memphis the kids are engaged in new technology initiatives through the My.Future program that makes learning fun for them,” said Mandy Powell, vice president of development for the Boys & Girls Clubs.
Susan George, executive director of Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Mid-South, said her organization is working every day “to bridge the gap between the social inequalities and shortfalls that are experienced by the families and children in our program.”
– Bill Dries
Temp Labor Firm Operator Guilty of Fraud, Tax Charges
The operator of a Memphis temporary staffing company is awaiting sentencing on federal fraud and tax charges after being convicted by a jury Dec. 8 in Memphis Federal Court.
Mark Stinson and his wife, Jatyon Stinson, operated a temporary staffing company that went under different names as each accumulated employment tax liabilities. The common word in all of the company names was Connexx.
Mark Stinson was convicted of failing to pay more than $2.8 million in withholdings and other employment taxes due to the Internal Revenue Service, failing to timely file employment tax returns and filing false employment tax returns.
The Stinsons also conspired to impede efforts by the IRS to collect on the employment tax liabilities owned by their companies.
They made false representations to the IRS about their control of the staffing company and their knowledge of their responsibility to truthfully account for and pay the employment taxes; placed the staffing company in the names of nominees who did not have control over the business operations; and established payment arrangements intended to impede an IRS levy placed on their customer payments.
Jayton Stinson pleaded guilty to conspiracy charges in connection with this case and is scheduled to be sentenced Jan. 31 by U.S. District Judge John T. Fowlkes Jr.
Mark Stinson is scheduled for a March 1 sentencing by Fowlkes and faces a statutory maximum sentence of five years in prison for each count of conspiracy, theft of government funds and failing to pay employment taxes; three years in prison for each count of filing a false tax return; and a mandatory two years in prison for aggravated identity theft.
Mark Stinson also faces a period of supervised release, restitution and monetary penalties.
– Bill Dries
OneJet Returning To Memphis Airport
OneJet, an airline that focuses on nonstop routes between small and medium-sized markets, is set to return to Memphis International Airport with routes to Pittsburgh and Kansas City, Missouri, beginning March 27.
The weekday flights will be offered twice daily, and tickets go on sale Jan. 17 at onejet.com.
OneJet, which previously operated at MEM from June 2015 to April 2016, will use 30-seat ERJ135 aircraft for the flights. The routes to Pittsburgh International Airport (PIT) and Kansas City International Airport (MCI) will feature OneJet Plus service, offering travelers enhanced amenities, including expanded legroom; complimentary high-speed Wi-Fi; streaming entertainment; and complimentary beer, wine and snacks. Travelers also will receive the same check-in conveniences that standard OneJet flights provide, including TSA Precheck access for eligible travelers and valet planeside baggage service.
“The return to Memphis and the introduction of these nonstop routes underscores the continued economic growth of the city as well as the consistent demand from some of our largest customers to offer improved connectivity to key regional destinations,” said OneJet CEO Matthew Maguire in a statement.
– Daily News staff
ServiceMaster Hires Chief Transformation Officer
Memphis-based ServiceMaster Global Holdings Inc. has named a new senior vice president and chief transformation officer.
Pratip Dastidar will lead company-wide initiatives to elevate the customer experience, simplify business processes and enhance productivity. He will report directly to ServiceMaster CEO Nik Varty.
“Bringing Pratip onboard reflects our continued commitment to make ServiceMaster a strong process-oriented, customer-focused organization,” Varty said in a statement. “While we will continue to invest in the required resources to grow our business profitably, we will use lean initiatives and digital capabilities to drive efficiency and process excellence to become an organization that relentlessly improves the customer experience and creates more value for customers and shareholders.”
Prior to joining ServiceMaster, Dastidar held executive roles in quality management and operational excellence for global businesses in the industrial, technology and digital sectors. Most recently, he led process innovation as part of operational scale-up at Salesforce, a cloud-based enterprise software firm.
Before that, he served as vice president of process transformation for HP, where he led optimization of end-to-end processes for the print and personal systems business. Dastidar also worked as a director at online retail giant Amazon, piloting last-mile delivery models that are part of the company’s Prime Now service.
– Daily News staff
Faropoint Sells Asset Near FedEx Headquarters
A 15,400-square-foot retail center around the corner from FedEx’s World Headquarters has been purchased by a California investor for $2.7 million.
Judith Obermeir of San Luis Obispo bought the center at 3315 Hacks Cross Road from Israeli investment firm Faropoint Ventures, which had purchased it in June 2016 for $2.2 million.
In a little more than a year, Faropoint was able to stabilize the property, which was 100 percent occupied at the time of closing, by leasing up the remaining vacant space.
NAI Saig Co. executive vice president Brian Califf and vice president Elliot Embry represented Faropoint in the leasing and disposition of the asset.
Faropoint has been busy in the Memphis market recently. In November, the company sold Trustmark Centre, 5350 Poplar Ave., for $19.3 million. Fresh off that sale, it paid a combined $19.3 million for the Lipscomb & Pitts Building, 2670 Union Ave. Extended, and Poplar Towers, 6263 Poplar Ave.
At the time, Califf said the acquisitions showed Faropoint’s commitment to the Memphis market, adding the company was “actively seeking new office and industrial deals to purchase by year end and into the first quarter of next year.”
– Patrick Lantrip
Tigers DB Carter Named All-American Freshman
For the second year in a row, the University of Memphis football team has a player on the USA Today Freshman All-American team, as defensive back T.J. Carter was named to the team. Kick returner Tony Pollard, who was named a Walter Camp and FWAA first-team All-America honoree earlier this week, was named a Freshman All-American by USA Today last season.
Carter, the American Athletic Conference Rookie of the Year, started all 12 Memphis games this season. He leads the team with five interceptions, which is a Memphis freshman record, ranks second in the conference and is tied for eighth in the country. A graduate of Stratford High School in Nashville, Carter also was named to the ESPN Freshman All-America team.
Carter, who’s also a second-team all-AAC honoree, has nine pass breakups, two fumble recoveries, including one on his first collegiate snap, and one forced fumble. He was named the Nagurski National Defensive Player of the Week after Memphis’ comeback win at Houston in October. Memphis trailed 17-0 at the half and came back to win 42-38, as Carter forced a fumble and grabbed an interception in the final three minutes of the game to seal the victory.
– Don Wade
Le Bonheur Honored As A Top Children’s Hospital
Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital has been named a Top Children’s Hospital by The Leapfrog Group, an independent hospital watchdog organization.
The award is a highly competitive honor for American hospitals, and Le Bonheur is one of only two hospitals in Tennessee to be named on the 2017 list, with the other being Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt in Nashville.
To qualify, hospitals must submit a Leapfrog Hospital Survey, and the selection of Top Hospitals 2017 is based on surveys from nearly 1,900 hospitals.
– Andy Meek
Memphis Asks Judge to Rule On Forrest Statue Removal
A Tennessee city is asking a court to overrule a commission’s decision that prevents the removal of a Confederate statue from a public park.
The city of Memphis filed a petition in Davidson County Chancery Court on Monday. Officials are asking for judicial review of the Tennessee Historical Commission’s Oct. 13 denial of a request to remove a statue of Confederate-era leader Nathan Bedford Forrest from Health Sciences Park.
Forrest was a slave trader, Confederate general and Ku Klux Klan leader who became influential in the city’s growth after the Civil War. Cities have tried to remove Confederate monuments following the racially motivated murders of nine people at a black church in South Carolina and a violent white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.
– The Associated Press
Offensive Coordinator At U of M Going to Texas A&M
Darrell Dickey has resigned from the University of Memphis to become the offensive coordinator at Texas A&M. Dickey has spent nine seasons at Memphis, and spent the last six on Justin Fuente’s and Mike Norvell’s staffs.
“I’m thankful for all the work that Darrell has put in throughout his years at the University of Memphis,” Norvell said. “He has represented our university in a first-class manner and we’re excited for him and Tori with the opportunity to return to his home state of Texas.”
Dickey served as the offensive coordinator at Memphis from 1986 to 1989. He returned to Memphis in 2012 in the same capacity under Fuente, serving as the OC until 2015. In 2016, Dickey served as the assistant head coach and coached the running backs. This past January, he returned to the offensive coordinator post, guiding a record-setting Tiger offense that ranks second in points per game (47.7) and fourth in total offense with 548.2 yards per game.
– Don Wade
Memphis Football Players Receive All-America Honors
Three University of Memphis football players have picked up various All-America recognition, including senior wide receiver Anthony Miller being named a first team All-America honoree by the Associated Press, and earning second team honors from the Football Writers Association of America.
Sophomore kick returner Tony Pollard was named a first team honoree by the FWAA and freshman TJ Carter was named to ESPN.com’s Freshman All-America team.
Miller is capping a career that saw him walk on from Christian Brothers High School at Memphis without a scholarship and walk out of the program as the Tigers’ all-time leading receiver with virtually every receiving record to his credit. A finalist for the Burlsworth Trophy, Miller already owns Memphis’ single game, single season and career marks in three categories: catches, receiving yards and receiving touchdowns.
With the upcoming AutoZone Liberty Bowl still to play (Dec. 30, 11:30 a.m., ABC), Miller ranks second in the NCAA in receiving yards (1,407), receiving yards per game (117.3) and receiving touchdowns (17). He also is fifth in the country with 7.7 yards per game, losing one regular season game to Hurricane Irma.
His 37 consecutive games with a catch is the second-longest streak in Memphis history and ranks eighth in the country among active streaks. He also was named a second team All-America honoree by Sports Illustrated last week and is a two-time all-AAC wide receiver.
Pollard earned first team honors from the FWAA, his second first-team All-America honor after being named a Walter Camp All-America honoree last week. Pollard leads the country in kickoff return yards (42.4) and kickoff return touchdowns (4). The two-time defending American Athletic Conference Special Teams Player of the Year, Pollard is also one of two players in the country this season with four kickoff return touchdowns. In his two-year Memphis career, he now has six kick return touchdowns.
Carter was honored by ESPN after tying the Memphis freshman record for interceptions, with five.
A starter in every game during his first year in Memphis, Carter finished second in the American Athletic Conference in interceptions (5), adding nine pass break-ups and 61 tackles.
– Don Wade
Marty Wick, the chief operating officer of Terminix, is leaving to pursue other career opportunities, the division of Memphis-based ServiceMaster announced Monday, Dec. 11.
In the interim, the termite and pest control’s field operations will report to Augusto Titarelli, vice president of Terminix’s north and international divisions since 2015.
Prior to Terminix, he served in various leadership roles at Tyco Fire and Security, including strategy, operations, mergers and acquisitions, and led multiple international operations.
– Bill Dries
Chancellor Ends County Opioid Suit Injunction
With a ruling dissolving a temporary injunction, Shelby County Chancellor Jim Kyle has ended the part of a dispute between the Shelby County Commission and Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell over opioid litigation that had been in Chancery Court.
Kyle originally ruled that he would not grant Luttrell’s call to void the Circuit Court lawsuit the commission filed on behalf of the county. The Circuit Court lawsuit names 24 defendants, including pharmaceutical companies and distributors of opioids.
Instead of voiding the lawsuit, Kyle gave the administration to the end of the year to intervene in the Chancery Court lawsuit.
Luttrell filed the motion to intervene, and with that, Kyle dissolved the Chancery Court injunction.
“The county made its decision on whether or not it would intervene, chose to intervene, drafted documents to intervene, and filed those documents with Circuit Court,” Kyle wrote in the Friday, Dec. 8, ruling. “It is not for the court to decide how a court of concurrent jurisdiction handles the motion to intervene. It is of no consequence to this court’s ruling that the motion to intervene was not heard on the merits and whether or not the motion is granted or denied in Division 1 of Circuit Court is irrelevant to this court.”
Attorneys for the commission had argued before Kyle last month that the county administration’s effort to void the Circuit lawsuit belonged in Circuit Court and not Chancery. Kyle’s ruling effectively puts the legal part of the controversy all in Circuit Court.
– Bill Dries
Houston Levee Center Sells for $2.3 Million
A 16,320-square-foot retail center in northeast Shelby County has sold for $2.3 million.
Mahmoud Faedah Jaber of Eads bought the Class B power strip at 2821 Houston Levee Road from Houston Levee Investments LLC, according to a Dec. 1 warranty deed.
Nanni Pidikiti and Deynath Pidikiti signed the deed on behalf of the sellers.
In conjunction with the purchase, the Jabers took out a $1.8 million mortgage on the property through First Citizens National Bank.
Built in 2002 and sitting on 1.6 acres near the intersection of Houston Levee and U.S. 64, the center’s notable tenants include T.J. Mulligan’s, Domino’s Pizza and VaporWize. The Shelby County Assessor’s 2017 appraisal is $1.5 million.
– Patrick Lantrip
U of M Launching Additive Manufacturing Initiative
The University of Memphis has announced an additive manufacturing initiative to enhance the application of advanced 3-D printing technology in modern manufacturing. The initiative will be supported by a $2 million investment in equipment and laboratory infrastructure, robust collaboration with local industry and a team of faculty researchers.
Part of the nation’s push to revitalize manufacturing industries, additive manufacturing is among a new generation of advanced technologies enabling diverse industries to harness unprecedented degrees of manufacturing precision, efficiency and flexibility.
Led by the Herff College of Engineering, the interdisciplinary initiative involves faculty in mechanical and biomedical engineering, physics and materials science, and chemistry. The U of M’s FedEx Institute of Technology will lend its support by establishing an additive manufacturing research cluster to seed novel work in the field.
“Stalwart partners Medtronic and FedEx are already supporting additive manufacturing research on our campus, as are others, including NASA and Naval Air Systems Command,” U of M president M. David Rudd said in a statement. “But the new effort … will take our work to the next level, positioning the university on the cutting-edge of this high-growth research arena and launching new, in-demand educational opportunities for current and prospective students.”
The new laboratory is expected to open in March 2018.
The U of M also plans to develop coursework, a graduate certificate program and training programs for industry professionals, helping to address a regional skills gap in this rapidly emerging area.
Additive manufacturing eliminates much of the traditional manufacturing set-up requirements, such as casting molds or dies, plastic injection or forging tools, as well as many traditional manufacturing steps. It allows for the fabrication of highly complex structures and a high degree of design freedom, making it well suited for cost-effective small batch or customized production of polymer, metal or hybrid devices.
Most recently, scientists have been working to extend this technology for use in biofabrication, or 3-D bioprinting, by combining biological and biologically friendly materials such as cells, gels or fibers to replace diseased or injured tissue.
– Daily News staff
Explore Bike Share Seeks Input for Station Locations
Explore Bike Share, a nonprofit that is implementing a 600-bicycle bike-share system in Memphis next spring, has launched an interactive, crowdsourced bike-share station siting map.
The site gives Memphians the opportunity to digitally pin and share spots where they would like to see one or more of the 60 initial bike-share stations that will be installed in early spring.
Designed in partnership with All World Project Management, a Memphis-based customized project management, engineering and information technology firm, the map allows users to select specific points on a map, see where others have pinned to “like,” and share their participation across social media channels.
“This is an opportunity for everyone to contribute to the building of a transformational transportation and cultural asset,” said Roshun Austin, Explore Bike Share board member and executive director of The Works CDC in South Memphis.
Innovate Memphis, a strategic partner of Explore Bike Share since its 2015 inception, has hired a bike share community engagement specialist to support Explore Bike Share’s community engagement efforts. The position was made possible by a federal CMAQ (Congestion & Mitigation Air Quality) match grant.
Aryanna Smith, Innovate Memphis’ bike share community engagement specialist, will work on behalf of Explore Bike Share to build partnerships with worksites and neighborhoods to ensure an equitable and successful rollout of the bike -share system.
Data from the interactive map and in-person site selection effort will be analyzed by All World Project Management and BCycle’s implementation team for final station locations, which will be unveiled in February.
The map will accept submissions until Dec. 31 at explorebikeshare.com.
– Daily News staff
Airport Files $35M Permit For Maintenance Facility
Memphis International Airport has filed a $35 million building permit application to construct a 121,700-square-foot airfield maintenance facility at 4150 Louis Carruthers Drive.
No contractor was listed for the new permanent facility, which will house Memphis International’s airfield maintenance and airport police personnel; bids for the project are expected to go out next month.
In February, A&B Construction Co. filed a $381,843 building permit application with the city-county Office of Construction Code Enforcement to build a temporary maintenance facility at 4121 Runway Road. The Memphis-Shelby County Airport Authority board approved A&B’s contract for the temporary facility in January after the company’s bid bested offers from three other companies.
– Patrick Lantrip
Memphis Sells Out Its Liberty Bowl Allotment
The University of Memphis announced Friday, Dec. 8, it has sold out of all of its AutoZone Liberty Bowl tickets. The Tigers quickly sold out of the original allotment of 8,300 tickets and has now sold the remaining tickets it was able to secure from the bowl. In total, the University of Memphis sold more than 15,000 tickets to the game.
Tickets can still be purchased directly through the AutoZone Liberty Bowl by calling 901-795-7700 or visiting libertybowl.org.
Nationally ranked Memphis is playing in the AutoZone Liberty Bowl for the first time and will face Big 12 foe Iowa State. Kickoff is scheduled for 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 30, and will be televised to a national audience on ABC.
– Don Wade
MATA Rolls Out Set of Service Changes
The Memphis Area Transit Authority began a series of seven service changes Sunday, Dec. 10.
The changes include suspending the Shelby Farms Park service until the spring and changing the 40 Wolfchase route to weekdays, with some adjustment of arrival times for outbound trips.
The 7 Air Park, 77 West Memphis and 11 Frayser Raleigh routes also go to weekdays only. The Air Park route will go from a frequency of every 60 minutes to every 70 minutes.
The Frayser-Raleigh’s inbound trip departs from Frayser Plaza at 5:20 a.m. instead of 5:06 a.m., and the outbound trip from the Hudson Transit Center moves from 5:45 a.m. to 5:57 a.m.
The West Memphis route changes include an adjustment of arrival times.
The 12 Florida route has earlier Saturday inbound and outbound trips with no more Saturday 5:45 a.m. outbound trip.
The 56 Lamar route has modified weekday trip times.
Go to matatransit.com/mapsandschedules or call the MATA call center hotline at 901-274-MATA for more.
– Bill Dries
FDA Clears In2Bones’ See-Through Bone Plates
Memphis-based medical device maker In2Bones USA LLC has received U.S. Food & Drug Administration clearance for an addition to its CoLink Forefoot Bone Plating System that will allow surgeons to view patients’ bones healing through a see-through hub.
The CoLink system is used to stabilize bones during the post-surgical healing process. The new plates combine titanium and a high-performance polymer called polyether ether ketone, or PEEK. It is the sixth In2Bones PEEK-related implant system to receive FDA clearance; others are expected to be cleared in 2018. In2Bones USA designs, manufactures and distributes medical devices to treat disorders and injuries of the upper and lower extremities, including the hand, wrist, elbow, foot and ankle.
– Daily News staff