Page 1

MAY 3, 2013

What’s the Big idea(s)? InnoVenture enters its 10th year of forging connections between innovators

sC prepares first asia-ameriCa ChamBer page 7

taryn sCher takes pr sparkle seriously page 16

developing a plan for magnolia park page 22

UBJ Table of contents A lathe used to manufacture optic cable in clemson’s coMSET optical fiber laboratory.

PRESIDENT/PublIShER Mark B. Johnston SENIoR VIcE PRESIDENT Alan P. Martin ubJ ASSocIATE PublIShER Ryan L. Johnston EXEcuTIVE EDIToR Susan Clary Simmons MANAGING EDIToR Jerry Salley STAff wRITERS Cindy Landrum, April A. Morris, Charles Sowell SENIoR buSINESS wRITER Dick Hughes


coNTRIbuTING wRITERS Jenny Munro, Jennifer Oladipo, Jeanne Putnam, Leigh Savage EDIToRIAl INTERNS Shelby Livingston, Casey Dargan

Photo Provided

ART & PRoDucTIoN ART DIREcToR Richie Swann PhoToGRAPhER Greg Beckner

F e at u r e s

colu m ns

de pa rt m e n t s

cover Story 14 Innoventure Shifts in 10th Year by Jennifer Oladipo

Digital Maven 8 Building a Better Business Card by Laura Haight

who’s who 16 Putting Clients’ Best Faces Forward by Jennifer Oladipo

Nonprofit Matters 9 A Fundraising Success Story: Paddling for a Friend and a Cause by Debbie Nelson

3 Manifesto 4 Worth Repeating 4 TBA 20 The Takeaway 21 The Fine Print 22 Square Feet 26 Planner 27 Quarterlies 28 On the Move 30 New to the Street 31 Snapshot

Entrepreneur 18 Lessons Learned by April A. Morris

create. Innovate. celebrate. 10 The Upstate’s Growing Entrepreneurial Ecosystem by John Warner

coNTRIbuTING PhoTo EDIToR Gerry Pate PRoDucTIoN Holly Hardin MARkETING & ADVERTISING MARkETING REPRESENTATIVES Lori Burney, Mary Beth Culbertson, Kristi Jennings, Donna Johnston, Pam Putman MARkETING Katherine Elrod MARkETING & EVENTS Kate Banner bRAND STRATEGIST Austin Hafer bIllING Shannon Rochester clIENT SERVIcES MANAGERS Anita Harley, Jane Rogers ADVERTISING DESIGN Kristy Adair, Michael Allen, Whitney Fincannon, Caroline Reinhardt IDEAS, fEEDbAck, oPINIoNS how To REAch uS 148 River Street., Suite 120 Greenville, SC 29601 864-679-1200

Copyright @2013 BY COMMUNITY JOURNALS LLC. All rights reserved. Upstate Business Journal (Vol. 2, No. 16) is published weekly by Community Journals LLC. 148 River Street, Suite 120, Greenville, South Carolina, 29601. Upstate Business Journal is a free publication. Annual subscriptions (52 issues) can be purchased for $65. Postmaster: Send address changes to Upstate Business, 148 River St., Ste 120, Greenville, SC 29601. Printed in the USA.

2 upstate business journal May 3, 2013

UBJ Manifesto

Business at the ball field for any of you who missed the Drive Business Downtown event last week, you struck out. It was a Chamber of Commerce Day – a day “so nice it would encourage businesses to relocate to the area.” That means you have to be OUTSIDE, not in an office building or conference room. Business is personal, meaning, as you all know, that it is all about relationships. Here are some of the common excuses I heard from people I didn’t see at Fluor Field last week: “I have to work.” “I can’t just leave the office to come drink beer at the ballpark.” “My boss won’t let me.” WHY NOT? Tell your boss business is all about these conversations

By Ryan Johnston UBJ associate publisher

and introductions: opportunities to get to know your associates, peers, clients and potential customers in a more casual setting. Pitches at the boardroom table, sending out emails, leaving voicemails – that’s not how you build solid relationships. We live in a wonderful city that fosters these environments for young and old to get out of the ordinary, loosen up the tie, roll up the sleeves and build relationships. And let me tell you, it is hard to beat being outside at our downtown ballpark, drinking locally brewed Thomas Creek beer, building local connections while enjoying a Chamber of Commerce type of day. Let’s keep this momentum going. But to do so, some mindsets need to change. You are not playing hooky: You are simply moving your meeting to a different conference room. I personally would like to thank The Drive and Elliott Davis for their energy and support in changing Greenville’s mindset. This year they had twice as many sponsors out at the field. These are the organizations that truly “get it.” Thank you and see you next year!

530 Haywood Road • GReenville, SC • 864.297.5610


Don’t Miss the SHE Indulges Opening Night Party, Featuring Elise Testone from American Idol!

UBJ Worth Repeating | TBA “Every idea needs a passionate, tenacious champion, and that’s no different online than it is in the real world.”

Sponsored by

August 23-25, 2013 TD Convention Center

Introducing SHE….an evolution of the best of Upstate Women’s Show and Spice of Life Food and Fitness Fest.

John Warner, founder of Innoventure

Who is SHE For? Your best girlfriend, your daughter, your next-door neighbor, your boss, your Mom, YOU!

“Put your eggs in one basket – and watch that basket.”

What is SHE? A celebration of everything woman...three days of fashion, style, beauty, cooking, entertaining, crafts, healthy living and shopping.

Carl Stecker, owner of Benefits in a Card, on maintaining focus.

Now accepting exhibitor applications. Contact or call 864. 250.9713.


SHEgville .com

JBM UBJ.indd 1

4/30/13 12:39 PM

“Our goal is to keep people on the property as long as possible. People will spend hours in Cabela’s, and dinner and a movie can create a three- to four-hour trip.” Marc Yavinsky, executive vice president of Menin Development Inc., developers of the Magnolia Park project on Woodruff Road.

Jack Snedigar Over 30 yrs. experience





“Work eight hours, sleep eight hours; just make sure they’re not the same eight hours.” Businessman and philanthropist T. Boone Pickens.


Manufacturing/Distribution 100,000 +/- SF; 23 +/- Acres

Development Investment Property Management

(864) 335.3030 | 135 S. Main St. Suite 800, Greenville Contact: Jack Snedigar (864)979.1978



Word is a well-known national retailer is looking to locate at the former site of Kevin Whitaker Chevrolet on N. Pleasantburg Drive. A rezoning is required; the public hearing is later in May …

Look for a new cigar store coming to downtown Greer... Miniature World of Trains is reportedly moving to downtown Greenville to the miniature golf building next to Rick Erwin’s Deli...

UBJ This Week CertusBank Picks Up Parkway Bank parkway bank of lenoir, n.c., is the latest acquisition of Greenvillebased CertusBank. Parkway was closed on Friday, April 26, by the N.C. Office of the Commissioner of Banks, and put into receivership with the FDIC. At the same time, CertusBank “assumed the deposits and certain other liabilities and purchased certain related assets of the bank,” according to a statement from CertusBank. Parkway Bank customers will automatically become depositors of CertusBank, and all locations of Parkway Bank will be open during normal business hours, said CertusBank. All customers will have full access to their deposits. “We are pleased to welcome the

customers of Parkway Bank to CertusBank,” said CertusBank president K. Angela Webb in the statement. Webb assured Parkway Bank customers that existing checks, debit cards, ATM cards and online banking and bill pay services would continue without interruption, and that checks drawn on the bank would be processed as usual. CertusBank now operates 32 branches in South Carolina, Florida, Georgia and North Carolina.

West to Head Retail Banking at Park Sterling michael west was recently named regional retail banking manager for the South Carolina/ North Georgia markets with Park Sterling Bank. West has worked in several retail leadership roles during his career and most recently served as a regional manager for PNC Bank in the Northeastern N.C. and Outer Banks markets. “Michael has a strong sales management background in small business banking and wealth management in addition to previous sales experience as an investment advisor and small business banking specialist in the RBC Bank USA branch network,”

said Dixon Harrill, Upstate SC regional president of Park Sterling Bank. “Both of these business lines represent tremendous opportunity for growth in both South Carolina and North Georgia. Michael’s experience and capability in these businesses as well as a deep understanding of community markets make him an excellent addition to the Park Sterling team.” West will be located at the main Greenville office. As a U.S. Navy veteran and East Carolina University graduate, he brings over 15 years of financial leadership experience to the Park Sterling team.


The Palmetto Bank Commercial team continues to grow, offering your business more robust cash management services than ever before. Take advantage of our best-in-class treasury management solutions and trusted financial expertise so you can improve your operational


efficiencies and build your business.

Equipment Financing • Treasury Services Asset-based Lines of Credit • Remote Deposit 1.800.PAL.BANK

Member FDIC

UBJ This Week GRC Receives CertusBank Grant

Photos by Greg Beckner

The Piedmont Shirt Factory being demolished.

the newly formed greenville Revitalization Corporation (GRC) recently announced it received a seed money grant from CertusBank. Formed earlier this year, the GRC is a nonprofit designed to pursue additional redevelopment grants for the Greenville County Redevelopment Authority (GCRA). The effort is focusing on disadvantaged areas of Greenville County, especially those impacted by the closure of textile mills and support businesses. The GRC was introduced at the demolition announcement of the Piedmont Shirt Factory, located along the Poinsett Corridor, and a potential redevelopment site. Martin Livingston, GCRA executive director and initial CEO for GRC, said, “We are in the process of seeking seed money from several organizations, but CertusBank is the first to step up and we will be forever grateful. We hope to thank them and our other supporters by bringing economic life to the Poinsett Corridor and the Textile Crescent.” Livingston added that the $2,500 grant will help fund a website and database to showcase the Piedmont Shirt Factory project and outline the organization’s goals and objectives. “The fact that CertusBank has recognized our potential and provided additional funding places us another step closer to becoming a factor in the development of the Poinsett Corridor and beyond,” said GRC board chair Joe Erwin in a statement.

Breakwater Wins OpenTable Honor for the second year in row, Breakwater Restaurant & Bar at 802 S. Main St. has been voted onto OpenTable’s Diners’ Choice list. “Breakwater is honored to win the 2013 Diners’ Choice Award. We celebrated our one-year anniversary in March and couldn’t have done so without the support

of our loyal customers,” said Gary Lang, owner and executive chef of Breakwater, in a statement. “Our goal is to create a unique Southern cuisine with the freshest local ingredients, and complement that with attentive and cordial service. We are thrilled that our diners think we have achieved this.”

6 Upstate bUsiness joUrnal May 3, 2013

A provider for free online dining reservations, OpenTable serves more than 27,000 customers and their Diners’ Choice list comes from customer feedback. After the diner’s reservation, OpenTable asks them to complete a Dining Feedback Forum rating their dining experience.

Elliott Davis Acquires Raleigh Firm elliott davis, the regional Greenville-based accounting and consulting firm, has acquired an established Raleigh, N.C., firm, Lunsford & Strickland, for its first office in that growing high-tech market. Shareholders of the firms approved the combination to be effective July 1. Lunsford & Strickland’s 14 employees, including 12 CPAs, will be integrated as Elliot Davis employees working under the Elliot Davis name. “By joining forces with Lunsford & Strickland, Elliott Davis will add top-caliber talent who will help us seed and grow an even more significant local presence in the near term,” said Rick Davis, managing partner. While it has served Triangle clients for years, this will be its first office in Raleigh. Elliott Davis also has a North Carolina office in Charlotte. John Lunsford, partner at Lunsford & Strickland, said the combination with Elliott Davis will permit “expanding our service offerings and delivering them via a Carolinabased firm.” Elliott Davis, which has been in business for 88 years, is the largest accounting, tax and consulting firm in South Carolina. It has 450 employees. In addition to offices in Greenville, Charlotte and now Raleigh, it has offices in Columbia, Charleston and Greenwood, Augusta, Ga., and one in Richmond, Va., which opened last fall.

UBJ International Deborah Gwinn

East Meets West at Business Table State’s first Asia-America chamber ready to launch By L. C. Leach III | contributor

with the Greenville Chamber of Commerce. “It’s a welcome addition to the Upstate’s existing base of organizations supporting international business development.” Gwinn said she had first considered the idea in the 1980s, but only recently was the venture viable. By 2010, she had been the owner of an import-export firm called Dynasty Corp., the owner of an antiquities business in New York City, and the general manager of DE Global Management Consulting in Shanghai. Even with an S.C. Department of Commerce office in Beijing, the push for an Asian chamber in South Carolina came from people Gwinn knew in Asia, who “kept asking me to organize something so that we could go there and make investments. “In China, relationships in business is what carries the most weight,” she said. “And the companies I deal with would prefer to come here through me.” Asian-SC business is growing. In 2012, the South Carolina Department of Commerce in Columbia reported:

Photo by Gerry Pate

• Approximately 200 Asian manufacturing companies are now located in 30 S.C. counties. • China ranked third among S.C.’s export markets, purchasing goods valued at almost $3.25 billion – 8 percent more than in 2011 and 311 percent more over the last five years. • State exports to Asia accounted for $5.6 billion – a 7.5 percent increase from 2011 – totaling about 22 percent of South Carolina’s total exports to the world. The total is poised to go up as Gwinn intends to attract small to mid-size Asian companies whose annual revenues total $10 million$100 million. “I think in time the impact of this new Asian chamber to Greenville and the Upstate for international trade will be significant,” said Clarke Thompson, international trade director for the S.C. Department of

Commerce. “It could be a gateway for investment prospects, but I think this chamber will be more of a catalyst for increased trade between South Carolina and Asia.” The official launch for SCAACC is set for August or September 2013. But Gwinn has already scheduled a business delegation of 20-30 from Myanmar in Southeast Asia to visit the Upstate in May to explore export potential from South Carolina to Myanmar. Just from that one visit, the potential for growth could be vast. “I want this chamber to represent as many Asian countries as possible,” Gwinn said. “But what I have in mind for now are places I know better – China, Myanmar, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Singapore and India.” To learn more about the SC Asia-America Chamber of Commerce, visit

Crunching numbers is a monotonous, thankless, boring job. More reason to let us do it. 864.908.3062 •

12ATL 4563

on april 15, greenville resident Deborah Gwinn stood outside an office building in Greer and held a sign up next to the front door. The logo read “SCAACC” – and it marked not only a personal achievement for Gwinn, but also a huge milestone for Greenville and all of South Carolina as the state’s first Asia-America Chamber of Commerce. “I spent the last year thinking this through,” said Gwinn, a native of China, born near Shanghai. “And an SC Asia-America Chamber of Commerce is the right thing to do now for this area.” The purpose is threefold: to bring in more investors from Asia to the state; to promote Asian businesses in South Carolina; and to assist companies in the state in exploring opportunities to export to Asia. The key role is to help members make connections for investment and business opportunities. “I think this new chamber will provide an excellent opportunity to build bridges with companies and leaders from another part of the globe,” said Hank Hyatt, vice president of economic development

UBJ Digital Maven


Building a Better Business Card technology has changed every aspect of how we do business except one: the ritual sharing of a 2-by-3 rectangle of paper we know as the business card. The first really new business card technologies will probably be driven by near-field communications (NFC). If you are an iPhone owner, you thought you’d have this by now. But instead Google mashed the Apple and you’ll now find quite a few Android phones and devices (as well as some new Blackberry models) with NFC capability. (Check here for new devices as they come out: Online marketing company Moo is one of the first to be ready to take advantage of NFC for business cards. Their NFC-enabled cards, expected to be available in the second quarter, are embedded with a read-write chip. You can customize – and change – the information you store on your card like contact info, of course, but also videos, maps, presentations, or maybe a product portfolio. But the beauty of an NFC card is you don’t have to actually hand it out. You simply tap it on the receiver’s NFC-enabled smartphone and the chip performs the instructions encoded on the card – like transferring a file, importing contact information, opening a video. And using an NFC app, you can continually update the information you want to distribute as your business – or your messaging – changes. The chip inside the phone does the execution, so there’s no need for a specific app. Mobile NFC has the potential to

significantly change how we do things, enabling secure transactions without cash or credit cards, as well as information communication and transfer based on proximity. As the resolution and quality of smartphone cameras has improved, hundreds of applications have cropped up to snap a business card, transcribe the info, then import the fields into your contacts. These apps offer a variety of options: • A few, not many, can handle double-sided cards. • Some can image and store a QR tag. Others can double as a QR tag reader. • Some will keep the scanned card in a virtual wallet on your phone. • A few can automatically connect you to the contact’s social media and send appropriate connection requests. • At least one will automatically send out a follow-up email – or optionally let you make changes to the standard templated text – right from the phone

after it is scanned. • Some offer cloudbased backup and syncing to multiple devices. • Most apps are free (meaning they are ad-supported), but even those that are paid usually have a free version so you can try them out. All these options are nice frosting, but optical character recognition (OCR) is where the rubber meets the road. If you have to spend several minutes with each card you scan correcting errors, you might as well have typed the information in yourself. But there are a few apps – like Card Munch, which is owned by LinkedIn – that do just that. You take the picture and submit the card, and human transcribers type the information into a database where it is reviewed up to three times – by people. You get a per-

NFC builds upon RFID (radio frequency identification) technology by allowing the device to both send and receive information. Besides business cards, you may be seeing NFC in: CONTACTLESS PAYMENT SYSTEMS BOOTSTRAPPING WIRELESS CONNECTIONS SOCIAL NETWORKING IDENTITY AND ACCESS TOKENS SMARTPHONE AUTOMATION

fectly transcribed card back along with a full LinkedIn profile (if the person has an account) and options to store the contact in your address book, send email or click to call. Sorry, Googlers, but Card Munch is only for iOS devices and you have to have a LinkedIn account to use it. The other potential downside is how long it takes to get the card back. It can be an hour or a day. But for me that’s still an improvement over the week’s worth of untouched cards that used to live on the top of my desk.

Laura Haight is the president of Portfolio (, a communications company based in Greenville that leverages the power of technology and digital media to communicate effectively with clients, customers and your staff. She is a former IT executive, journalist and newspaper editor.


UBJ Nonprofit Matters


A Fundraising Success Story: Paddling for a Friend and a Cause this past january we lost a dear friend to glioblastoma, a truly devastating disease. He had no signs or symptoms until BOOM … and then the grave diagnosis was made. Almost exactly a year after his first visit to the ER, on April 20 a large group of Art’s friends and family gathered at the banks of Lake Hartwell to celebrate his life and raise money for cancer research. The weather was glorious. We shared stories and laughed while Springsteen blared in the background. Art certainly would have been in his element. Why did we choose this location at the Portman Marina? We were participating in the seventh annual Dragon Boat Upstate Festival. And I am proud to announce that the 40 individual and corporate teams represented that day raised more than $300,000 to benefit cancer research and rehabilitation at Greenville Health System’s Cancer Center. This year’s event brought their seven-year fundraising total to more than $1 million. Our team, “Art’s Navy,” was one of the top teams, raising more than $30,000. We also won both of our dragon boat races, and just fell short of racing in the finals. Our tent was selected as the most creative, perhaps because of the 10-foot gondola that displayed Art’s name. And, as our T-shirts read, we were

“Kicking Gliobastoma in the Glutes.” As I reflect on the success of that day, I present a question that I have been asked often. Most recently a board member of an established local nonprofit posed it. Our development director has recommended that we create a new special event to raise additional revenue. Could you offer some tips if we decide to establish a team fundraiser for our nonprofit? SALLY Sally, your organization is embarking on an important strategic decision. It is not easy to identify a new and unique fundraising event that will offer the potential for longterm financial success. Many nonprofits are seeking opportunities that fall into the category of “mustattend occasions.” These are the types of events that are marked on calendars a year in advance and that we invite our friends to. Take some time making this decision. Before selecting an event, I recommend holding a brainstorming session with your board and staff members. You will be amazed by the group’s creativity. Then research ideas and contact organizations around the country that hold similar events to find out about their experiences. There are many fundraisers that are based on a team structure; on

“During your team fundraiser, creatively tell your story so teammates understand and are motivated to spread the word about your cause.” any given weekend the Upstate has numerous walks, runs and cycling events. Consider some of the successful models: March for Babies (March of Dimes), Team in Training (Leukemia and Lymphoma Society), Wheels for Meals (Meals on Wheels Greenville) and the Dragon Boat Upstate Festival. So if you decide to go this route, be sure to evaluate your competition, choose your date wisely and follow these recommendations: IDENTIFY AND RECRUIT STRONG TEAM CAPTAINS These individuals are the backbone of your event. They will tap into their personal networks and will champion your cause. They will build engaged teams of individuals who are potential donors and friends of your organization. Their efforts will support your organizational goals of encouraging annual participation and growing donations. OFFER AN OUTSTANDING EVENT EXPERIENCE Develop a unique and memorable event. Make sure it is well run. Plan down to the smallest detail to ensure that participants walk away with a smile. During the event, creatively tell your story so teammates understand and are motivated to spread the word about your cause. Provide incentives to encourage friendly competition and recognize outstanding contributions.

PROVIDE THE TOOLS NEEDED TO ENGAGE TEAMMATES Your team captains provide an important communications link to their teammates. It is, therefore, imperative that they have access to current information about the fundraiser. They also need user-friendly tools for team registrations, donations and recognitions. Fortunately there are many software providers that offer these solutions. In addition, be sure to incorporate email, online and social media strategies to support the event.

Congratulations to the Greenville Health System (Office of Philanthropy & Partnership), the South Carolina Ovarian Cancer Foundation and Winn the Fight for successfully orchestrating the Dragon Boat Upstate Festival. It was a great event that inspired me to continue supporting the fight against cancer, especially as I watched the many survivors parade among their supporters. As I reflect on the day, only one thing could have made it better: if we could have had Art there to enjoy the celebration. Until next time, Debbie

Debbie Nelson is the president and founder of DNA Creative Communications, a public relations firm that partners with nonprofit and government organizations in the education, human services and sustainability sectors. Each year DNA offers its Live Here Give Here pro bono program and Shine the Light on Your Nonprofit workshop series.


UBJ Create. Innovate. Celebrate.

The Upstate’s Growing Entrepreneurial Ecosystem a decade ago, i started innoVenture with a mission that has evolved into helping people develop big ideas to make the world a better place. When the first InnoVenture conference was held, the Liberty Bridge was about to open and the Clemson University International Center for Automotive Research (CU-ICAR) was still an emerging idea. The growth of the creative culture in the Upstate since then is amazing, but working together we

can accomplish even more. In the past 10 years, Clemson and Greenville have discovered each other. Two hundred graduate engineering students from around the world attend CU-ICAR. Through the Clemson University Biomedical Engineering Innovation Campus (CUBEInC), the university has forged a close partnership with the Greenville Health System on its Patewood campus. The graduate programs of the Clemson College

of Business and Behavioral Science are established downtown. The Clemson MBA in Entrepreneurship and Innovation (MBAe) is a big success, and the Spiro Institute for Entrepreneurial Leadership continues to roar. Solid high-impact entrepreneurial companies are starting and growing here. ScanSource, founded in 2003, has grown into a $3 billion revenue company headquartered here. There are more significant venture capital

Kevin Weir uses the InnoVenture website to spread the word about Milliken’s infrastructure solutions.

10 Upstate bUsiness joUrnal May 3, 2013

backed companies here than since the bubble of 2000. Selah Genomics, in partnership with Greenville Health Center’s Institute for Translational Oncology Research (ITOR), has emerged as a leader in personalized medicine. Zipit Wireless is making a name for itself with their novel cloud-based mobile devices. Greenville’s serial entrepreneurial family, the Housers, is at it again with Green Cloud. Steve Townes grew Ranger Aerospace into a force in his industry, and now a former colleague, Bill McClendon, has started Perot Aerospace headquartered in Greenville. The Upstate’s entrepreneurial ecosystem is growing. The Next Innovation Center is an entrepreneurial force. The Iron Yard is a burst of new entrepreneurial energy in Greenville and now Spartanburg. The Spartanburg Entrepreneurial Network (SERN) is knitting together entrepreneurial programs at Wofford, USC Upstate, Spartanburg Community College and the Spartanburg Chamber. The Presbyterian College School of Pharmacy has gotten into the act with their Center for Entrepreneurial Development. This entrepreneurial ecosystem is matched with the presence of major corporations managed by people who are among the best in the world at what they do, with core processes that are operationally excellent delivering value to customers around the world. BMW is building the Ultimate Driving Machine, Michelin manufactures the tires your family depends on, and GE Energy produces more gas and wind turbines here than anywhere else in the world. With all this success, the Upstate still trails many peer communities


across the country in metrics such as per-capita income. InnoVenture has focused on two great challenges that can accelerate our progress even faster. We’ve worked hard over the years to connect the entrepreneurial ecosystem across the Southeast to make it stronger. Our recently launched Web platform,, is designed for anyone with a big idea to connect with needed expertise and resources. Universities have organized their big ideas of faculty, students and alumni into networks, such as USC and ClemsonUniversity.InnoVenture. com, to cross-pollenate and promote the ideas they support. Zach Eikenberry, the force of nature behind the highly innovative

NEXT High School, has benefited greatly from being in multiple networks, from the NEXT network to the Innovation in South Carolina Education and the South Carolina Future Minds networks. All these

often informal, personal and not fully formed. Milliken, for example, has a new product, Concrete Cloth, focused on the infrastructure rehabilitation market, where they have little expe-

“The growth of the creative culture in the Upstate in the past 10 years is amazing, but working together we can accomplish even more.” networks working together have helped NEXT High School attract 102 followers who are interested in how they can help the school succeed. What makes InnoVenture most distinctive is connecting the entrepreneurial energy and creativity in

the region to the depth and breadth of major corporations that can scale around the world. The central core of major corporations is data-driven and proprietary, but the future is created on the edge where emerging insights about what is next are

rience but see enormous potential. allows Milliken to grow a network of ideas related to infrastructure rehabilitation, which helps the entrepreneurs succeed. Milliken can watch the ideas develop and provide significant resources to the winners without knowing up front who the winners will be. Milliken can also discover other like-minded people interested in these infrastructure rehabilitation ideas who may be great sales leads for concrete cloth product. Ten years later, I’m excited about the future of the Upstate, connecting major organizations with the surrounding entrepreneurial ecosystem to make the world a better place on a scale never before possible. It has been and continues to be a heck of a ride.

John Warner is CEO of InnoVenture, whose global Web platform helps people with big ideas attract needed customers, capital, talent and technology. partners include major corporations, universities and entrepreneurial companies regionally and around the world.

a division of GOS

Is your environment contaminated with bacteria? Our process creates a protective shield that eliminates germs in your environment for up to 90 days.

For more information, contact us at 864.233.5346.

UBJ Industry

Contact Charles Sowell at

Duke Finds Profits in Renewable Energy By Charles Sowell | staff

duke energy, the nation’s largest power company, has found renewable energy and sustainability very profitable, said Duke spokesman Randy Wheeless. “There are, essentially, two parts to our energy business,” he said. “There is the state-regulated side which provides electricity to customers, and there is the side where we sell power to other utilities and businesses, often generated by wind power or solar. That is much more costly.” Duke recently issued its 2012 Sustainability Report, an overview of the company’s social, environmental and financial performance.

It is the first report since the merger of Duke Energy and Progress Energy in July 2012. “Greater transformation lies ahead for our company and our industry,” said Jim Rogers, the company’s chairman and CEO, in his letter to stakeholders. “Current drivers of change include the shale gas revolution, emerging technologies and anemic growth in energy usage. Also, our nation must address global climate change in a more comprehensive way.” The report provides details on the company’s performance in five focus areas – innovative products and services, environmental foot-

print, quality workforce, strong communities and governance and transparency. It also features a number of employees for their personal sustainability efforts. “Transparency is a big part of this whole sustainability effort,” said Wheeless. “We want our customers and stockholders to be informed about the company.” Duke is working on a $9 billion generation modernization program;

“We have customers who are willing to pay a bit more for power in order to be more green.” Randy Wheeless, Duke Energy spokesman

the company will retire more than 3,400 megawatts of older coal-fired units by the end of 2013, said Wheeless. Over the course of the next few years, the number is expected to grow to 6,300 megawatts of retired coal generation capacity. Investments in new power plants and upgrades at other units have reduced sulfur dioxide emissions by 83 percent and nitrogen oxides emissions by 64 percent since 2005, the company said in a release. Duke has set a goal of owning or purchasing 6,000 megawatts of wind, solar and biomass energy by 2020. Those generating methods are pricey, Wheeless said. “But we have customers who are willing to pay a bit more for power in order to be more green.” He cited the example of Google’s green energy program. Google Inc. has invested more than $1 billion in

Take a look at what’s happening during tournament week. TOURNAMENT SCHEDULE May 16-May 18 . Rounds 1-3 Thornblade Club, Chanticleer & The Reserve at Lake Keowee Sunday, May 19 . Final Round Thornblade Club

BIRDIES FOR BEER presented by Michelob Ultra May 16-May 19 Thornblade Club 9th hole Spectators will enjoy special beverage prices for 10 minutes each time a Tour pro or amateur contestant makes a birdie on this par 3.

PARTY ON THE PLAZA presented by the Clemson Alumni Association May 17 . 7-10pm . Free public event . Graham Plaza (corner of Main St. & Broad St.) Enjoy a rockin’ good time as you watch live-streaming video of The Celebrity Concert presented by Drive Automotive, which will take place just steps away on the TD Stage at the Peace Center. You may even see a few celebrities arrive to the concert! For more information about this event visit the Special Events page on BMWCHARITYGOLF.COM.

PINK ON THE LINKS . May 18 . All courses MIKE CREERY FIRST TEE LOVE FOR THE GAME JUNIOR GOLF DAY May 18 after the 3rd Round Thornblade Club Practice Range Youth are invited to attend this free event and receive golf tips from Tour pros while hitting shots at the practice range. Youth will also receive free Chick-fil-A, Pepsi, OOBE t-shirts and more. For additional information about this event, including parking details, visit the Special Events page on BMWCHARITYGOLF.COM.

Wear pink to show support for breast cancer awareness!

Visit BMWCHARITYGOLF.COM to learn about tickets, celebrities, playing opportunities, sponsorships, volunteering, charities, course info and more. To purchase a ticket package for the tournament’s exclusive evening events, contact Mike Ivester at . .

UBJ This Week renewable energy projects and buys wind-generated electricity, is pushing utilities to offer large customers more options on clean power. Google said more than 60 percent of Global Fortune 500 companies have renewable energy or greenhouse gas reduction targets, but utilities aren’t doing enough to satisfy demand. “Even though companies want renewable power and are willing to pay for it, the product is not being offered,” Google said. Duke is developing a program in North Carolina that would sell clean energy directly to large customers that opt into the service without raising prices for other rate-payers. The proposal will be filed with state regulators shortly. Google plans to participate, the company said in an e-mailed statement announcing a $600 million expansion of its data center in Lenoir, N.C.


42% COAL




RENEWABLE Source: Duke Energy 2012 Sustainability Report

Louisiana Company Acquires East Broad Trust argent trust of ruston, la., has acquired East Broad Trust Co., which is based in Greenville and has an office in Columbia. Although based in Louisiana, Argent operates under trust and estate planning laws with a Tennessee charter, and that was a factor in East Broad’s decision to accept Argent’s purchase. Tennessee’s trust laws are thought to tilt more favorably to trusts than any other state in the Southeast, providing more protection for assets and having lower tax consequences in a variety of instances. “Our board and management team reviewed many options, and one of the many reasons we selected Argent was the benefits

our clients can receive by taking advantage of Tennessee trust law,” said Jordan Earle, senior executive of East Broad. Earle and Steve Fisher, also a principal with East Broad, as well as Marie Bird of the Columbia office, will remain with the company under the new ownership. Earle and Fisher have a combined 45 years of experience in financial services; Bird has 30 years. Kyle McDonald, CEO of Argent, said its practice is to use “highly qualified local professionals to lead its subsidiaries and market offices.” Argent has a client asset base of $6 billion. It has offices in Louisiana, Alabama, Arkansas, Tennessee and now South Carolina.

Golf. Celebrities. Parties. Pros. May 16 19 . You can’t miss it.




despite the lone warrior often at the center of innovation stories (think Steve Jobs), reality usually finds numerous people with skills and resources who made significant contributions. The idea behind InnoVenture is to get those people together, in person at the May 8-9 conference, and online through Until this year, the conference was the main venture for InnoVenture LLC, founded by John Warner. It remains a forum for people with ideas to find resources, and for people with resources to find ideas. The conference, the annual transportation-focused Innomobility conference, and various forums organized for corporate clients have been InnoVenture LLC’s enterprises for almost a decade. Yet recently the website became the primary networking tool. Now those who would present their ideas at a conference must first post them to the website for consideration. Warner said is on track to meet its goal of 1 million users by the end of 2014. The current 11,000 users come from 24 U.S. states and 28 countries. After numerous iterations over the past two years, Warner said he finally settled on a website that he likens to LinkedIn, the professional networking website. When that company went public in 2011, Warner looked at its reports. He found that most of its revenue came not from premium accounts or even paid advertising, but from the recruiters who paid for


access to the organized information that could be gleaned from tens of thousands of profiles. That matched InnoVenture’s model perfectly. Users list their ideas on the site, which organizes them from most to least popular. Popularity is measured by interaction, so as people share an idea or communicate with its poster, it moves closer to the top. “Every idea needs a passionate, tenacious champion, and that’s no different online than it is in the real world,” Warner said. This year the conference will feature four focus areas (see sidebar). Warner said the conference format will be comprised of short presentations in small groups that will allow for more interaction between presenters and audience. Among the dozens of presentations, here are three topics highlighted this year:


among this year’s feature presenters, milliken & company stands out as one who Warner said had to be coaxed into participation a decade ago. Kevin Weir, who works with innovation and business development at Milliken, said the company’s infrastructure business works to address the problems that have earned the country’s roads, bridges, sewers and other infrastructure a “D” rating from the American Society of Civil Engineers for the past several years. Weir said Milliken is creating novel,

ABOVE, LEFT: John Ballato and Ph.D. student Stephanie Morris tweak a high-power laser in a COMSET laboratory at Clemson.; ABOVE, RIGHT: Milliken’s Concrete Cloth is designed to eliminate the need for cement mixers when paving. Instead, concrete is transported and laid out in the form of a heavy cloth that can be rolled out on awkward terrain or even under water.

low-cost repair and rehabilitation innovations. “Politicians and industry thought leaders have been pushing for a decade for more innovation to meet the growing infrastructure challenge,” Weir said. “But true innovations in this space have been few and far between.” Three products recently have been developed to address these needs. Concrete Cloth is designed to eliminate the need for cement mixers when paving. Instead, concrete is transported and laid out in the form of a heavy cloth that can be rolled out on awkward terrain or even under water. GeoSpray is a structural, spin-cast, nano-Geopolymer cement that re-lines and rehabilitates sewer and stormwater systems, and RenewWrap structural reinforcement is a new carbon fiber and specially formulated epoxy composite.

LEFT: Photo by Craig Mehaffey; RIGHT: Photo Provided


john ballato, director of the clemson university center for Optical Materials Science and Engineering Technologies (COMSET), uses to track who is interested in his work on laser and fiber optic technologies. These light-based technologies have been instrumental in manufacturing, and so their development is important to manufacturing in this region, Ballato said. The general public is mostly unaware that cellphones, for instance, are machined using lasers, and lasers shoot signals to optical lines to complete the phone call. “The global market from things built using lasers and light is about $7 trillion,” Ballato said. “That’s half of the U.S. GDP.” He’ll use the conference to connect with others who can help Clemson map exactly how lasers and fiber optics are being used throughout manufacturing, which will make it easier to anticipate future needs. He also seeks an inventory that will show the value of all the products in the Southeast that are enabled by the use of lasers.

INNOVENTURE 2013 CONFERENCE May 8-9 Registration closes May 8 at View ideas at THEMES Sustainable Materials, Systems, and Energy • Milliken & Co • Clariter • Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of

South Carolina • Clemson University • Purdue University • NC State University • Greenville Water • New Carolina Intelligent Transportation and Mobile Services • Greenville County Council • PRT Consulting • Intelligent Transportation & Mobile Services • Center for Transportation Research • University of South Carolina

Ballato will also promote a different model of R&D. He said a Germaninfluenced model, with more emphasis on public-private partnerships, would speed the movement of technologies based on that information to market. He said other companies on the manufacturing panel at InnoVenture are also interested in expanding “light technologies.” “We don’t know where it’s going to or what form it will take in the future, but InnoVenture seemed as good a place as any to get the conversation started,” Ballato said. greenville county councilman fred payne will promote personal Rapid Transit (PRT) as one tool for better connecting our communities and improving quality of life. He hopes InnoVenture will be an opportunity to connect with engineers, contractors and others who would develop this on-demand “personal express taxi” system of electric vehicles. They would operate on their own paths, connecting areas such as CU-ICAR and downtown, or large housing developments with large commercial centers. “Somebody locally would have to build the [track], build the vehicles. Somebody’s got to maintain them and manage the system, all of that. I’m looking for partners who are in business and can make this kind of thing happen.” Investors are also on the top of Payne’s list. He said current estimates for construction of a PRT system is $7-15 million per mile depending on complexity, plus the cost of right-of-way acquisition. “I don’t expect an equity capital person to be there in the meeting, but there may be someone who has a connection to them,” he said. Finally, he sees InnoVenture as one way to influence public opinion on the topic, which would be a key to getting attendant public policy in place.

• Spartanburg Area Transportation Study (SPATS) • Taxi 2000 • Roadify Aerospace and Aviation Innovation • PEROT Aerospace LLC • Stevens Aviation, Inc. • SC Department of Commerce Aerospace Task Force • Louis Berger Services, Inc. • Federated Precision Inc. • MIT-RCF • South Carolina Technology and Aviation Center

Contact Jennifer Oladipo at


Manufacturing and Supply Chain Innovations • Clemson University • Emerald Endeavors • Flextronics • Draexlmaier Automotive • SC Manufacturing Association • Turner Padget Graham & Laney • CURF • AFL Telecommunications • Staubli • OpTek Systems • SiMT

NETWORKS • Charlotte Research Institute- UNC • Clemson University • CETi – USC’s Startup Resource Center • Rolling Rock Investments SPECIAL PRESENTATIONS • Next High School • Health Sciences SC SCRA BIG CHECK PRESENTATION • Bill Mahoney, CEO, SCRA


Putting Clients’ Best Faces Forward

Photos by Greg Beckner

Taryn Scher of TK Pr.

Taryn Scher celebraTeS 5 yearS aS TK Pr’S ‘SParKle boSS’ By Jennifer oladiPo | contributor

Having recently celebrated five years in business, Taryn Scher of TK PR took time to talk about how she started out and where the business is today. Her official title is “Sparkle Boss,” and she started the year with her first employee, junior publicist Laura Morton, “Sparkle Sidekick.” Scher takes sparkle seriously, from the bejeweled pink telephone, keyboard, stapler and insulated coffee cup on her desk, to a bright and energetic attitude that is hard to overlook.

ing the personal touch increases her credibility. “I will not send blast emails or press releases. I think it’s rude,” she said. Similarly, she sees social media as more effective for advertising than for publicity. She said most new clients assume that TK PR will manage their social media, but the company does not offer that service. “Social media is needed, but it’s not enough. You need multiple platforms,” Scher said. Still, she does check on clients’ Web traffic when publicity hits the media; it’s one way to see how the work is paying off.

WOrking With ClientS “Some clients think everything is newsworthy or a media opportunity,” she said, “but sometimes it’s just an ad.” Taryn said she has to educate some clients and get them to trust her

not afford any other summer activities for their children. She said her client wasn’t the focus, but that publicity was priceless.

pr’S private Side “PR is a funny industry. My perfect day is sitting at the computer firing off emails and phone calls for hours,” Scher said. She says she has had wonderful opportunities, such as sitting in the front row at New York Fashion Week events, but such glamorous moments are atypical of the work. More often, regular and meaningful communication with the media is what pays off. Case in point: Greenville is scheduled to be featured in Travel and Leisure Magazine as one of the top three emerging cities in the United States. She attributes that to two years of keeping the reporter on Greenville’s radar so that he called on her when it was time to find the hot new spots.

“SOme ClientS think everything iS neWSWOrthy Or a media OppOrtunity, but SOmetimeS it’S juSt an ad.”

Starting Out Scher had moved to Greenville from Boston with her husband, working remotely for a Boston PR company while he completed his residency at what was then Greenville Hospital System. Within a year, however, she was told that her position would move to contract, and she would have to start her own business. “I said ‘Sure, no problem,’ but I didn’t have any idea how to start a business.” Scher said. “I never thought I’d hire a full-time employee. I have never had a business plan, goal or target client list.” She’s now reevaluating her business and taking steps she had skipped in the rushed startup phase. She is working with a business coach.

telling the upState’S StOry TK PR has represented companies including Red House Inn in Landrum and High Street Hospitality in Greenville. She also works pro bono for organizations and events that have brought people to the city, such as the annual Euphoria food festival. Scher has also been behind some of the significant national publicity Greenville has received in recent years, through her work with VisitGreenvilleSC (formerly known as the Greenville CVB). That includes a 30-page profile in US Airways Magazine in 2010 and coverage in Oprah and Southern Living magazines.

Old-faShiOned valueS Even though it seems like an obvious PR tool, Scher eschews bulk email in favor of individually addressed communications with every media contact, believ-

taryn Scher has her cellphone decorated with the logo of her company, tk pr.

expertise when it comes to publicity. “I will not tarnish my reputation with a reporter because I’m being bullied by a client,” she said. She also works to ensure that clients don’t miss opportunities by being too narrow in their focus. Working with national media helps her understand how her client might not be the center of a story, but might play a significant part in a larger story on a different issue. One client, Kids Bowl Free, was mentioned on an NBC Nightly news story about the economic depression in Flint, Mich., and a family there that valued Kids Bowl Free because they could

Contact Jennifer Oladipo at

Self-prOmOtiOn? For all of her work putting her clients in the spotlight, Scher admits that she sometimes neglects her own brand. This year is the first that TK PR had a website that is search engine optimized, making it easier to find on the Web. And Scher says she should be more vocal about the large amount of pro bono work she does. Going to bat for clients is one thing, but talking about herself is harder. As hard as it is to believe, the PR maven says she is actually a shy person by nature.

May 3, 2013 Upstate bUsiness joUrnal 17

Lessons Learned Carl Stecker, owner of Benefits in a Card, discovered early on that failures are learning opportunities

Photos by Greg Beckner

by APRIL A. MORRIS | staff

18 Upstate bUsiness joUrnal May 3, 2013

budding entrepreneurs

Fast Fact: Stecker loves to hunt quail and pheasant with his 19-year-old son near Lake Okeechobee in Florida.

can start with babysitting services and lemonade stands, but Carl stecker, 47, started with a cement truck. Stecker, owner of Benefits in a Card and NetProfit Advisors, began his series of businesses with a friend at 16, painting houses – then moving on to construction and purchasing a cement truck to pour patios. He moved on from Troy, Mich., to publish Spring Breaker magazine, a guide for students, in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. He then worked as a trader at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, where he was a “market maker” for Johnson & Johnson, serving as an intermediary between buyers and sellers. Along the way, he’s held “every job possible in a restaurant” and worked in sales at 3M. And that’s what brought him to the Upstate. Stecker said he learned lessons through every venture, along with valuable skills in the corporate world. In 1992, he founded NetProfit Advisors as a firm that helped companies grow, taking warrants or options and receiving a portion when the company succeeded. The firm later evolved into a tax credit procurement business. NetProfit was sold in 2004 to TALX corporation, said Stecker, and TALX was later sold to Equifax. One achievement Stecker is most proud of is that during the sale, he stipulated that local employees stay for two years. The result was that Equifax opted to keep an office in the Upstate, he said. Benefits in a Card came along in 1999. The company offers health coverage for companies like staffing firms, restaurants and temp firms.

“Some of our bigger clients (from NetProfit) had 400 percent turnover and they came to us and said, ‘We need some affordable healthcare for our employees,’” Stecker said. It took about two years to implement the system, he said. Because Benefits in a Card served clients like ConAgra and Cargill, it started in a big way. “We immediately became national,” he said. The company now serves companies in 50 states and has 26 employees in the Upstate. And like many serial entrepreneurs, Stecker has the optimism that sees failures as learning opportunities. He said he learned the difficult

“i’ve seen companies cut too deep. people are your core and that’s what’s going to help you grow and you can’t replace that experience. What it fundamentally costs the business is real … you can’t just manage your business off of a balance sheet.” carl stecker preparation and research lesson with startup Garnishment Solutions, which would expand its current operation of administering courtordered garnishments to all types. “We spent a bundle developing the software and hiring staff and ended up just shutting it down,” he said. “We didn’t research the market. It was so decentralized in how these garnishments were administered. With that entrepreneurial optimism, we let it rip and weren’t watching the bank.” That diligence and research is going into a new incarnation of NetProfit Advisors launched in late 2012, Stecker said. The company is now a lending entity and seeks to help entrepreneurs grow their businesses. Part of the goal, he added, is to also be a resource for board development, training and advice. Over the years, Stecker said he has also learned how important experienced people are to any business.

Contact April A. Morris at

“I’ve seen companies cut too deep,” he said. “People are your core and that’s what’s going to help you grow and you can’t replace that experience. What it fundamentally costs the business is real … you can’t just manage your business off of a balance sheet.” Stecker said he had multiple mentors and the best piece of advice he took away from them was to maintain focus: “Put your eggs in one basket – and watch that basket. It’s tempting to get involved in a lot of different things and spread yourself too thin.” Stecker had this advice for entrepreneurs: “Try your best to have a balance in your life. Business isn’t everything. It should be spiritual, be family and then your business in that order. That’s part of focus to keep that balance in your life.” “It’s nothing for me to work 18-hour days and not think about it – if I let myself,” he said. “But I’ll leave here and do an hour and a half of yoga. That’s part of me maintaining that balance.”

May 3, 2013 Upstate bUsiness joUrnal 19

UBJ The Takeaway

By Angela Nixon, Clemson University Media Relations

‘‘A Fool With a Plan Can Beat a Genius With No Plan’’ T. Boone Pickens on hard work, making decisions and never forgetting where you came from

In an interview with Clemson alumna Meredith Land, news anchor for NBC 5 in Dallas and a friend of Pickens, he shared nine tips for being an effective leader. work hard. “Work eight hours, sleep eight hours; just make sure they’re not the same eight hours,” said Pickens. evenT: A Conversation with T. Boone Pickens, held at Clemson University who was There: Approximately 600 Clemson students, faculty, staff, alumni and Upstate residents speakers: Businessman and philanthropist T. Boone Pickens, interviewed by NBC 5 Dallas news anchor and Clemson alumna Meredith Land Topic: Thoughts on Leadership

Work ethic is very important in a leader, Pickens said; to make it to the top, you have to work hard to get there. Make a plan and sTick To iT. Pickens said he learned the value of planning in college at Oklahoma State University, when his parents told him that he needed to make a plan to graduate or they would no longer pay his tuition. “A fool with a plan can beat a genius with no plan every time,” he said. Pickens also emphasized the importance of sticking to a plan and not getting distracted by small issues. “If you’re hunting elephants, don’t let rabbits distract you,” said Pickens. Be careful froM whoM you Take advice. Pickens said you should ask three questions before taking advice from someone: 1) Is this person smart? 2) Does this person have a conflict of interest? 3) Does this person love me? keep Things siMple. Pickens said someone should be

20 Upstate bUsiness joUrnal May 3, 2013

Photo Provided

renoWneD bUsinessMan anD pHilantHropist t. boone pickens visited the Upstate recently to explore his roots, and during his visit, he made time to speak at Clemson University, sharing his thoughts on leadership with a packed house at the brooks Center for the performing arts. pickens comes from a long line of leaders and can trace his ancestry back to revolutionary War hero Gen. andrew pickens, for whom pickens County is named.

Meredith land sits down with T. Boone pickens

able to explain his plan in four minutes or less. Be able to write it succinctly as well. Make decisions. Pickens said many leaders suffer from “Ready, aim, aim, aim syndrome” – they continue to think and re-think things endlessly without making a decision. “The most disappointing thing for the people you are leading is the failure to make decisions,” he said. “Leaders have to make decisions.” He also urged people to avoid making decisions at night, if at all possible. “Things just look different at night,” he said. eMBrace change. Pickens embodies the concept of embracing change. He’s an 84-year-old man with a Twitter account. He reinvented his entire career in his 70s. “Change always has more good results than bad ones, if you plan for it and put enough thought into it,” he said.

never cheaT To win. Pickens shared a story of the time his mother caught him cheating at bridge when he was a child. He said she told him, “You play the hand you are dealt. In life, you don’t get to throw your hand back in and get new cards.” Winning by cheating is a hollow victory, said Pickens. In fact, it’s not a victory at all; it’s a loss. Be paTienT. Most bad decisions come from poor communication and impatience. Be generous. Pickens has given more than $1 billion to various philanthropies throughout his life. He said he learned the importance of giving from his grandmother, who always donated to the American Red Cross, even when she had very little to give. “She taught me to never forget where you came from,” said Pickens.

UBJ The Fine Print Auto Supplier Opens in Greenville ACS (Affiliated Construction Services), a Madison, Wis., company that specializes in integrating engine and vehicle test operations, is opening a regional office in downtown Greenville. Lee Cockrum, managing director of ACS Southeast who will head up the office, said “Greenville’s central location in the Southeastern automotive corridor and its strong base of automotive manufacturers and

suppliers will create great synergy and opportunity for our firm.” The company said it would employ 10 people in the office to accommodate engineering, planning, sales, marketing and administration. ACS is up-fitting 4,000 square feet of space at 55 East Camperdown Way. The company’s clients include Cummins, Caterpillar, Daimler, Harley Davidson, GE, John Deere, Navistar and Tognum. It specializes

in “design, construction, integration, and commissioning of complex industrial, R&D, and manufacturing facilities.” ACS has offices in China and England, as well as in Wisconsin. The Greenville Are Development Corp. and the S.C. Department of Commerce assisted in “in making this advancement a reality,” Cockrum said. Chris Riley, chairman of GADC, said ACS is a “wonderful example of a company that deploys world-class technology, performance-based

processes and a mix of local and national talent to grow and expand its business.” Gov. Nikki Haley and Commerce Secretary Bobby Hitt applauded ACS’s decision to put its regional office in Greenville.

Oconee Lands Data Center

Airless Tire Wins an Edison

‘Well-Executed’ Diversity Event

Manley Gets High Honor

Technology Solutions of Seneca plans to invest $1.5 million in a Tier III data center in Oconee County to take advantage of the high-speed Internet access the county has installed through an extensive fiber-optic network. The company said it initially expects to generate seven new jobs and as many as 21 within five years. “The combination of businessfriendly climate and recent addition of high-speed Internet access made Oconee a clear choice in which to locate our new data center,” said CEO Richard Ellison. The data center will offer managed hosting, colocation and disaster recovery with a security rating of Tier III, the third highest of four rating by the Telecommunications Industry Association.

Michelin North America won the 2013 Edison Silver Award for excellence in transportation innovation for its airless radial tire used on skid vehicles for construction, landscaping, refuse and recycling and agriculture. The Michelin TWEEL SSL “uses traditional radial tire technology but requires no air, thereby eliminating the risk of a flat tire,” the company said. “We continue to be surprised and encouraged at the extent to which the innovation is generating excitement across many vehicle segments,” said Tim Fulton, head of Michelin Tweel Technologies. The Edison awards are presented in 12 categories to recognize persistence and excellence in development of new products and services.

More than 100 of BMW’s top suppliers and more than 1,000 women and minorities owning businesses networked for matchmaking at BMW’s second annual supplier diversity conference April 11. “It was one of the most wellexecuted diversity events I have attended,” said Lesa Rivers, director of supplier diversity at Staples, in a statement released by BMW. Tassilo Wirth, BMW’s global diversity director who was keynote speaker, said BMW supports women- and minority-owned businesses because “people with different backgrounds and different problem-solving strategies offer innovative ideas and sustainable performance.”

The Small Business Administration has named Chris Manley, co-founder of Engenius, a web design and development firm, as South Carolina’s Young Entrepreneur of the Year. The SBA award honors an entrepreneur under the age of 30 whose company has experienced outstanding growth and demonstrates innovation and community involvement. Manley, 28, was 23 when he and his partner started the company. Manley and Chase Finch founded the company in 2008. In 2010, they hired their first employee. Currently, Engenius has six employees and more than 130 clients.

UBJ Square Feet

Magnolia Park Plans Take Shape By Jeanne Putnam | contributor

since the closing of greenville Mall and the announcement of Magnolia Park with businesses such as Cabela’s and Dave and Buster’s coming soon, many eyes have turned to the development to see what is coming next. Although Magnolia Park has taken nearly six years to get construction rolling, the announcement of restaurants like Toby Keith’s I Love This Bar, Big Daddy’s Burger, and Firebirds Wood Fired Grill herald the arrival of retail at the development. “We view a group of restaurants as an anchor, because it provides choices for customers while they are waiting for their meal,” said Marc Yavinsky, executive vice president of Menin Development Inc. Retail announcements are coming soon, he added. “Our goal is to keep people on the property as long as possible. People will spend hours in Cabela’s, and dinner and a movie can create a three- to four-hour trip.” Yavinsky said that they are seeking “typical action-type retail.”


1. Costco 2. Toys R Us/Babies R Us 3. Cabela’s 4. Regal Cinemas 5. Dave & Buster’s 6. Toby Keith’s I Love This Bar 7. Sears 8. Christmas Tree Shops 9. A.C. Moore 10. Party City 11. Shoe Carnival

They already have 550,000 SF of commercial real estate planned today, but are adding another 400,000 SF. The success of current tenants will help lure new ones, said Yavinsky. “A lot of people on the property are very, very successful,” he said. “The potential for business is seen by those in retail. The Regal Hollywood 20 is No. 1 in North and South Carolina.” The location of the site is also a draw for businesses, Yavinsky said. “It’s a regional property on the busiest interchange in the state with 250,000 cars passing by every day. Magnolia Park will be able to draw more than your traditional anchored shopping center. And people like Greenville.” Magnolia Park is also exploring the opportunity to build a hotel, but they have not named a partner, Yavinsky said. The company also has a plan for addressing parking issues on the location and are in the process of drawing the plans around the Hollywood 20.




24 23

12. Old Navy 13. Bed Bath & Beyond 14. Dress Barn 15. Carolina Ale House 16. Ruby Tuesday 17. McDonald’s 18. Select Comfort 19. Elements Therapeutic Massage 20. Sweet Frog Yogurt 21. Cheddar’s 22. Bad Daddy’s Burger Bar 23. Firebirds 24. Rooms to Go


Contact Jeanne Putnam at

Magnolia Park

7 3

8 4


6 12

5 22


20 19

14 18


10 11



UBJ Square Feet the upstate chapter of commercial Real Estate Women (CREW), an organization focused on networking and leadership for the female workforce in the area, is sponsoring multiple events this month. They will host the third annual Carolina Connection Conference on May 9-10 at the Westin Poinsett in Greenville as well as their third annual CREW Upstate Awards Reception on May 9 at the Palmetto Bank Headquarters in Greenville. The 53-member Upstate chapter officially started in 2009 “as the brainchild of local attorney Maurie Lawrence,” said Meg Scoopmire, past-president of CREW Upstate. “Lawrence garnered the support of the local real estate community and formed a steering committee. By 2010, CREW Upstate was an approved and functioning charter of the national CREW Network.” Since its inception, CREW has steadily grown in membership and added sponsors, said Scoopmire.

$2.5M PELHAM LINKS PROJECT UNDERWAY Pelham Links Family & Cosmetic Dentistry will open its new 13,000 SF dental facility located at 3369 Pelham Road next to Grace Church in Greenville in December. The project is estimated at $2.5 million and started when “Pelham Links approached Mavin Construction about their needs for a new facility,” said D.J. Doherty III, partner at Mavin Construction. “Mavin assembled a team comprised of NAI Earle Furman, DP3 Architects

Contact Jeanne Putnam at

On Board With CREW Upstate Commercial Real Estate Women focus on development, connections By Jeanne Putnam | contributor

From the beginning, the organization “set out to impact its members and the Upstate commercial real estate market.” CREW’s focus is on fulfilling four key initiatives: business development, leadership development, industry research and career research. In 2011, CREW Upstate moved beyond networking events and joined forces with Clemson University’s Richard H. Pennell Center for Real Estate Development to host a transportation summit focused on “How to Move the Upstate Forward.” The following year, the same two groups hosted the “Sustainability Summit: Greening the Upstate,” which was geared towards students and professionals inter-

and Seamen Whiteside & Associates to evaluate different sites that were within the boundaries of where they wanted their new office.” According to Doherty, five different sites were considered before the location next to Grace Church was selected. In addition to Mavin Construction, DP3 Architects, NAI Earle Furman, Seamen Whiteside & Associates, Arrowood & Arrowood, Stover Mechanical, Devita & Associates, and Patterson Dental are all involved in the project.

SCOTT TOWERS ON THE MARKET The Housing Authority of the City of Greenville (HACG) will accept sealed bids for the purchase of the former Scott Towers public housing building, a 14-story high-rise structure located at 511 Augusta St., Greenville until 2 p.m. on May 14. For bids to be eligible, they must be in writing,


ested in discussing best practices and issues related to sustainable real estate solutions. Being a member of CREW Upstate has been more beneficial in the areas of business development and leadership development, said Scoopmire. The group “functions as a receptive network of individuals across disciplines in the real estate industry who genuinely want to help other members,” she said. “It is a networking organization ... but also a collection of members who welcome the opportunity to serve as resources for each other so that everyone can thrive in their chosen career.” According to Scoopmire, the general consensus of the members sealed and clearly marked “BID ON 511 AUGUSTA STREET” on the outside of the envelope. Bids must be submitted to HACG at 122 Edinburgh Court, Greenville, SC 29607; Attention: Wanda Gardner. It is the bidder’s responsibility to make sure that bids are received by HACG on or before May 14 at 2 p.m. Any bids received after

is that “CREW Upstate is also a supportive and collegial organization that encourages its members to take on leadership roles and gives them the space and opportunity to develop leadership skills.” In addition, CREW offers not only business networking, but a support system for members new to the Upstate’s real estate market. “One of the best benefits of CREW Upstate are the opportunities it provides to its members and particularly to members who may be new to the real estate industry – either due to being new to the workforce or as a result of a shift in career focus – to instantly interact with people from all segments of the real estate industry and to serve in leadership roles alongside them,” said Scoopmire. Although CREW’s name implies that only women are in the organization, membership is also open to men. For more information, visit

the deadline will be considered “nonresponsive.” All bids will be publicly opened on the deadline in HACG’s offices. The property is being offered in “as is, where is” condition with no express or implied warranties, the housing authority said. If an equal bid occurs, the property owner will be selected randomly. Any interested parties can pre-schedule a visit to the property by contacting Wanda Gardner at 864-467-4209 or CHARLOTTE PROJECT FINANCED FOR $1M Capital Advisors has arranged $1 million in construction financing for Cedar Walk, a 7,400 SF medical office building project located at Cedar Walk Lane and

Blairbeth Street, in Charlotte, N.C. Matt Good of Capital Advisors’ Greenville office arranged the 24-month loan which is interestonly for 12 months and amortized over 15 years thereafter. The loan was arranged through Bank of the Ozarks on behalf of BBW Properties LLC. $1.5M REFI FOR CVS Capital Advisors has recently arranged $1,500,000 in refinancing for a 10,125 SF freestanding CVS at 4102 Old Buncombe Road in Greenville. Clark Jenkins of Capital Advisors in Raleigh, N.C., arranged the 20-year, fully amortizing loan, which carries a low fixed interest rate through Capital Advisors’ correspondent lender, Southern Farm Bureau Life Insurance Company.

May at the Greenville Chamber Member Marketplace is Here!

This new feature on the Chamber’s website allows all members of the community to browse and request special offers from trusted Chamber member businesses. Sign up today at to start saving on the products and services you need while supporting the businesses that drive our local economy!

Feature Event: 9th Annual Upstate Diversity Leadership Awards Dinner

This event to celebrate and promote diversity in Upstate SC will feature annual award presentations and guest speaker Baxter Wynn, Minister of Pastoral Care and Community Relations at First Baptist Greenville The celebration is Thursday, May 23 at TD Convention Center. Registration is online at

Upcoming Events

Register at Events are held at the Chamber unless otherwise noted.

Wednesday, 5/1 Manufacturers Roundtable Friday, 5/3 Ribbon Cutting at Rose Photography & Design Sunday, 5/5 PULSE Connects HOG Day Tuesday, 5/7 Non-Profit Alliance: Effective Presentations Tuesday, 5/7 Intro to PULSE Wednesday, 5/8 Small Business Workshop-Using Outlook Thursday, 5/9 Small Business Matters Friday, 5/10 Legislative Issues Committee Update Tuesday, 5/14 Business Before Hours at the Commerce Club Wednesday, 5/15 Sales U: Presentations with Becky McCrary Friday 5/17 Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Update Tuesday, 5/21 Healthcare Providers Network Tuesday, 5/21 U.S. Chamber’s Hiring Our Heroes Job Fair Tuesday, 5/21 Business After Hours at American HomePride, Inc. Wednesday, 5/22 Small Business Owners’ Forum Thursday, 5/23 Member Orientation Thursday, 5/23 Upstate Diversity Leadership Awards Dinner at TD Center Tuesday, 5/28 Environmental Issues Committee Update Monday, 6/3 Public Policy Lunch: State Superintendent of Education Mick Zais Tuesday, 6/4 Non-Profit Alliance

Special Thanks to these New Greenville Chamber Members for their Investment in our Upstate Business Community! Call Experts Cateechee Golf Club Cullum Services, Inc. Currahee Club Dream Big Greenville - Reedy Square Eastern Design Services, Inc. Geosyntec Consultants, Inc. Groucho’s Deli IGI Real Estate Consultants Intero Advisory Jack’s Custom Upholstery Jimmy John’s Downtown KEK Accounting Services Plus, LLC KW Associates Law Offices of Charles M. Groves, LLC Mashburn Construction Moss & Associates Mulch Mart NexSlim Nexus Media America, LLC North Hills Automotive Palmetto Proactive Healthcare-Greenville Palmetto Proactive Healthcare-Spartanburg Parkinsons Support Group of the Upstate Phil Hyman Photography PK Management PMD Medical Rehab Therapy Solutions Randall Surgical Corporation Ritchie & Associates Southern Eye Associates Steve’s Custom Carpentry, Inc Stratus Building Solutions Two Sisters Embroidery and Design, LLC Wireless Communications, Premium Verizon Wireless Retailer WMYA MY 40 TV/Cunningham Broadcasting

Save the Date for our National Small Business Week Celebration Tuesday, June 18th! Not a Greenville Chamber Member? Call 864-242-1050 to find out how we can help you learn, save and connect! 24 CLEVELAND ST. GREENVILLE, SC 29601






UBJ Planner MONDAY MAY 6 GCS ROUNDTABLE The Office Center at the Point, 33 Market Point Drive, Greenville; 8:30-9:30 a.m. Speaker: Myles Golden Topic: The Collective Genius Theory Call Golden Career Strategies at 864-5270425 to request an invitation.

TUESDAY MAY 7 ENGENIUSU SEMINARS Clemson at the Falls, 55 East Camperdown Way, Greenville; 9-11 a.m. Topic: Social Media Without the Hype Cost: $31.59 per person Register at: engeniussocialmedia.

SPARTANBURG HEALTHCARE NETWORK Spartanburg Area Chamber of Commerce, 105 North Pine St., Spartanburg; 10:30 a.m.-noon Speaker: Kim Atchley Topic: Targeted Support for Caregivers Price: Free, but please RSVP Contact: Meric Gambel at 864-594-5030 or mgambel@spartanburg

METRO TOASTMASTERS CLUB Greenville City Hall, third floor conference room, 206 S. Main St., Greenville; noon Open to all to attend

Contact: 864-3500044

NONPROFIT ALLIANCE Greenville Chamber of Commerce, 24 Cleveland St., Greenville; noon-1:30 p.m. Cost: Free for Greenville Chamber members who are executive directors of area nonprofits, $20 for non-members Lunch will be provided at no charge Please register to attend Contact: Claudia Wise at 864-239-3728

INTRODUCTION TO PULSE Greenville Chamber of Commerce, 24 Cleveland St., Greenville; 5:30-7 p.m. Open to PULSE members and nonmembers. Light refreshments will be served. Contact: 864-239-3743

BUSINESS AFTER HOURS Babb & Brown, 505 W. Butler Road, Mauldin; 5:30-7:30 p.m. Open to Mauldin Chamber members. RSVP at: 864-2971323 or info2@

WEDNESDAY MAY 8 PELHAM POWER BREAKFAST Insurance Market, 3453 Pelham Road, Suite 105, Greenville; 8-9 a.m. Cost: Free for Greer Chamber Members Register at:

SB WORKSHOP Greenville Chamber, 24 Cleveland St., Greenville; 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. Topic: Using Outlook 2007/2010: features, tips and tricks for proficiency Cost: Free to attend with registration. Contact: Claudia Wise at 864-239-3728 or cwise@greenville

FEMCITY GREENVILLE CONNECTION LUNCHEON City Range, 615 Haywood Road, Greenville; 11:45 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Speaker: Jil Littlejohn, City Councilwoman, will share her inspiring story of becoming a powerful female leader in our community. Cost: $30 for members and $45 for nonmembers. Register at: FemCities/Greenville/ Calendar.htm

DIVERSITY CONNECTIONS CityRange Steakhouse Grill, 774 Spartan Blvd., Spartanburg; noon-1:30 p.m. Speaker: Pam Harrison, Merrill Lynch Topic: Adapting to Sudden Life Changes Open to all members and guests Contact: Doug Gregory at 864-594-5000 or dgregory@spartanburg

RESOURCE RECESS Simpsonville Chamber


of Commerce, 211 North Main St., Simpsonville; noon-1 p.m. Speaker: Dr. Elliott Hirshor, New Life Chiropractic Topic: STRESS: Adapt or Perish Lunch will be provided for registered guests Cost: Free for Simpsonville Chamber members, $7 for non-members Contact: Allison McGarity at amcgarity@

INNOVENTURE 2013 CONFERENCE TD Convention Center, 1 Exposition Drive, Greenville Presentation will be available in: Health Innovation and Technology; Sustainable Materials, Systems & Energy; Production Technologies & Manufacturing; and Connectivity & Mobile Services. For more information, visit

YOUNG PROFESSIONALS TOASTMASTERS Greenville Commerce Club, One Liberty Square, 55 Beattie Place, Greenville; 6 p.m. Cost: $5 to cover meeting space and one drink at the bar


Technology; Sustainable Materials, Systems & Energy; Production Technologies & Manufacturing; and Connectivity & Mobile Services. For more information, visit

Greenville Chamber of Commerce, 24 Cleveland St., Greenville; 8-9:30 a.m.


Open to all interested in small business. Cost: Free. Light breakfast will be provided. Contact: Claudia Wise at 864-239-3728

Palmetto Bank Headquarters, 306 E. North St., Greenville; 5-7 p.m.

For more information: yptm.toastmasters


BUILDU LUNCH Events at Sapphire Creek, 401 North Main Street, Simpsonville; noon-1:15 p.m. Speaker: Becky McCrary Topic: Networking Cost: $15 for Simpsonville Chamber members, $25 for non-members. Lunch will be provided. Contact: Allison McGarity at amcgarity@simpsonville

INNOVENTURE 2013 CONFERENCE TD Convention Center, 1 Exposition Dive., Greenville; Presentation will be available in: Health Innovation and

Cost: Free for those who have registered for CREW Carolina Connection, $20 if not registered for CREW Carolina Connection Register at:

FRIDAY & SATURDAY MAY 9-10 CAROLINA CONNECTION CONFERENCE Westin Poinsett, 120 South Main St., Greenville Speakers: Deb Sofield, award-winning speaker, and Michael Riordan, president and CEO of the Greenville Health System Cost: $125 for CREW members and $150 for non-members Register at:



UBJ Quarterlies

Bank SeeS ProfitS ongoing Palmetto Bank reported first quarter net income of $2.2 million, its third consecutive profitable quarter after a rough patch during the credit collapse and the slow recovery in real estate values. CEO Samuel Erwin said earnings momentum from the last half of 2012 has carried forward and, despite a continuing “challenging economic environment,” the profitable trend for the bank is expected to continue. The net for the first quarter was 21 cents per share. In the comparable quarter in 2012, the bank had a loss of $587,000, or minus 5 cents a share. The bank broke into the black in the 2012 third quarter with net of $3.2 million. Erwin said an increase in loan originations in the first quarter “is an encouraging sign of an improving economic environment. While new loan originations are hard to predict, our pipeline for new loans is currently favorable.” Palmetto has assets of $1.1 billion.

n.C. in Mood to grow Growth-minded Park Sterling Bank reported net income of $3.2 million, or 7 cents per share, in the first quarter. Charlotte-based Park Sterling secured its first hold in the Upstate in 2011 when it acquired Greenwood-based CapitalBank, now fully integrated as Park Sterling. In the first quarter, it completed conversion of former customers of Citizens South Bank of Gastonia, which it acquired last year, adding to its branches along the I-85 corridor. Having completed integration of Citizens South, Park Sterling said it “is now well positioned to pursue discussions regarding potential additional strategic partnerships.” Bank SeeS itSelf ‘on traCk’ BnC Bancorp, parent of Bank of North Carolina, reported net income of $3.8 million, or 14 cents per share, compared

to $1.1 million, or 11 cents per share, in the same quarter last year. Swope Montgomery, president and CEO of the High Point, N.C. bank, said, “first-quarter earnings are evidence that our internal focus on efficiency, integration and execution are on track.” BNC has been aggressive in moving into South Carolina. It entered the Greenville market with acquisition of the singlebranch Regent Bank for $9.75 million. It also purchased the two-branch Carolina Federal Savings Bank of Charleston and First Trust Bank of Charlotte.

from deferred income taxes. Synovus said its non-performing loans were reduced to $84 million in the first quarter from $263 million in the fourth quarter of 2012. Synovus, which is based in Columbus, Ga., owns banks in Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, Tennessee and Florida, many of which operate under original names, such as NBSC in South Carolina.

lender HaS reCord Year

Earlier, it had acquired failed Beach First National Bank in Myrtle Beach, Blue Ridge Savings Bank of Asheville, N.C., and KeySource Commercial Bank of Durham, N.C. Montgomery said while BNC would continue “to actively pursue strategic acquisitions” in key markets, it is focused on cultivating the investments in the last few years and other internal financial strategies. This past week, BNC used proceeds from a $30-million loan to buy back the $31.3 million in TARP preferred stock it sold to the U.S. Treasury in the recession. Montgomery is retiring as president and CEO. Rick Callicutt, executive vice president and chief operating officer, has been named successor.

world acceptance Corp. of Greenville said it had record earnings in the fiscal year ended March 31. The alternate-source lender said earnings for the 12 months were up almost 20 percent to $7.9 million on revenue of $584 million, up 8 percent from the prior fiscal year. It had fourth-quarter earnings of $37.9 million on revenue of $162 million. Per share earnings of $3.01 were up 18.5 percent. “Strong growth in earnings per share benefited from the company’s share repurchase program over the past year,” the company said. Over the 12 months, World Acceptance repurchased 2.6 million shares at a cost of $183 million. World Acceptance is one of the largest providers of small installment loans to borrowers who are unable or unwilling to borrow from conventional banks. It has 1,203 offices in 13 states. Store BrandS Hurt delta’S Soffe

nBSC Parent rePortS Profit Synovus financial, which owns National Bank of South Carolina, had net income of $14.8 million, or 2 cents a share, in the first quarter. In the prior quarter, the Georgia holding company had net income of $703 million, 78 cents per share. The bank’s fourth-quarter 2012 results were inflated by $800 million recaptured

Greenville-based delta apparel reported fiscal third-quarter sales of $120 million and net income of $1.6 million, or 19 cents per share, down in both instances from the same quarter year ago. In the third quarter of 2012, Delta had net income of $1.9 million, or 22 cents per share, on sales of $125.5 million. Delta said cool weather “throughout the country combined with continued weakness in certain retail channels resulted in slower than expected overall sales during the third quarter.” The company said all of its branded clothing lines with the exception of Soffe experienced “sold sales growth” in the

quarter. The decrease in overall sales “was driven entirely by a 30 percent sales decline in the Soffe business.” Delta said “turmoil in the current retail environment and a strategic shift by some large retailers from branded products to more private-label products” has hurt Soffe sales in sports and casual activity wear. Robert Humphreys, chairman and CEO, said the sales growth in other than Soffe brands “attests to the strength and desirability of our products, but we obviously have a good deal of work to do at Soffe to bring the business back to expectations. Delta has made management changes at Soffe “all the way to the top” and reinvigorated marketing and sales to realign Soffe to match current market demands. It also has cut costs to “return Soffe to profitability at current sales levels.” Humphreys said Delta is “already seeing some limited results from these efforts.”

taking a Hit in euroPe ScanSource had sales of $683 million and net income of $14 million, or 50 cents per share, in its third fiscal quarter. Sales were down 3.5 percent from $708 million from in the same quarter a year ago. Net income in that quarter of 2012 was $14.8 million, or 54 cents per share. CEO Mike Baur said ScanSource’s North American units, led by its communications business, “drove sold quarterly results. However, our international operating performance was disappointing.” He said the company has cut annualized expenses by $3.1 million in Europe by reducing headcount and by moving certain back-office functions from Brussels to ScanSource headquarters in Greenville. The company took an after-tax charge of $800,000 for the cost of restructuring in Europe, including expenses associated with eliminating positions “to set the cost structure in line with current operations.”

May 3, 2013 Upstate bUsiness joUrnal 27

UBJ On the Move


Appointed as the Greenville County Schools Foundation’s first executive director. In addition to her new role as ED of the GCS Foundation, Mann continues her full-time role for Greenville County Schools as program director at A.J. Whittenberg Elementary School of Engineering. Prior to joining GCS in July 2012, she was director of external communications for Michelin North America. She received a bachelor’s degree magna cum laude from the Honors College at the University of Alabama.






Hired as director of media services for Infinity Marketing in Greenville. Hubble has more than 28 years of experience strategically planning and buying media for nationwide consumerdriven clients. She previously worked for Zimmerman Advertising in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., where she led accounts such as Firehouse Subs, Steak ‘n Shake and Ashley Furniture HomeStore.

Owner of Stravolo Wealth Management in Spartanburg; recently awarded the Personal Financial Specialist (PFS) credential by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), joining an elite group of professionals who have demonstrated advanced knowledge of tax, estate, retirement, investment and insurance planning. Stravolo is one of about 100 CPAs in South Carolina to hold the PFS credential and one of 20 in the Greenville/Spartanburg area. Stravolo must meet recertification requirements every three years to maintain the credential.

Wastewater treatment plant operator for Renewable Water Resources (ReWa); recently recognized at the South Carolina Environmental Conference (SCEC) with the Water Environment of South Carolina (WEASC) Wastewater Treatment Plant Operator of the Year Award. The award is given annually for excellent achievement in the direct operation of a water or wastewater treatment system in South Carolina. Evans joined ReWa in 2000 as a part-time operator at ReWa’s Grove Creek plant after being highly sought after by ReWa leadership.



Custom water. Refreshing results.

O’Neal Inc., a Greenville-based integrated design and construction firm, recently hired Jerry Hayes as senior construction manager. Hayes has more than 40 years of professional experience in both vertical and horizontal construction management. He has experience with THS Constructors and Choate Construction.





Southern Traditions Window Fashions recently announced that Karen Dye has joined the company as a design consultant, working directly with residential and commercial clients on product needs and specifications. A Sherwin-Williams Certified Color Consultant and a Certified Staging Professional, Dye formerly owned her own staging company. She also has banking and finance experience and served as the chief financial officer for an architectural group.

Stravolo Wealth Management in Spartanburg recently announced that one of its financial advisers, Larry Hart, has been awarded the Accredited Asset Management Specialist (AAMS) designation by the College for Financial Planning. Individuals who hold the AAMS designation have completed a course of study encompassing investments, insurance, tax, retirement and estate planning issues, and passed a comprehensive exam. All designees must adhere to the College for Financial Planning’s Standards for Professional Conduct and must meet continuing education requirements. Hart is one of 20 in the Greenville/ Spartanburg area to hold this designation. There are 150 throughout South Carolina. He has more than 20 years of experience in the financial services industry.


Greenville County Council recently reappointed Harold A. Carey Jr.




Professor of political science at Furman University; recently nominated by President Barack Obama to serve on the Board of Directors of the

Recently recognized by the Bob Jones University Alumni Association with its Distinguished Servant Award. Solomon has been teaching English, journalism and communications at BJU since 1978. Throughout her career at BJU, she served as a faculty advisor to the Vintage staff and as a copy editor for BJU Press and was instrumental in the development of BJU’s award-winning campus newspaper, The Collegian. She also has written articles for Today’s Christian Teen, BJU Review and Voice of the Alumni and served as a general assignment writer at The Greenville News.

and Jonathon P. Giles to the Greenville Airport Commission (GAC). Carey will serve an additional three-year term. The GAC is the owner and operator of the Greenville Downtown Airport (GMU). GMU is the busiest general aviation airport in South Carolina and is a self-sufficient entity.


Smith Moore Leatherwood recently announced that Michael Bowers, William Dennis, Steven Farrar, Michael Giese, Tod Hyche, Natalma McKnew, Robert Moseley Jr. and Kurt Rozelsky have been named by South Carolina Super Lawyers magazine as top attorneys in 2013. In addition, Michael Hickerson, Jason Maertens, and Fredieric Marcinak III have been honored as South Carolina Rising Stars of 2013. Less than five percent of lawyers in each state are selected to this exclusive list. This is the fourth consecutive year that Smith Moore

Leatherwood has been recognized in business litigation, estate planning and probate, and transportation/maritime. The category of franchise and dealership law has been recognized for a second consecutive year. Collins & Lacy, P.C. recently announced that Jack Griffeth and Mike Pitts have been named as 2013 South Carolina Super Lawyers and Suzy Boulware-Cole and Ross Plyler have been named as South Carolina Rising Stars list. Fourteen attorneys with the statewide business defense firm are included in the 2013 list, making 50 percent of Collins & Lacy’s attorneys who have been selected for this esteemed honor. Last year, five attorneys were on the list.


Mount Vernon Mills recently announced that Carolyn Black, a 20-year veteran of the textile industry, has joined the company as FR technical specialist. She has worked

Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Nelsen, who joined the Furman faculty in 1989, has served as chairman of the South Carolina Education Television Commission since 2011, which Governor Nikki Haley appointed him to. He served as chair of the political science department from 2003 to 2009. He has been president of the South Carolina Political Science Association, and is a member of the American Political Science Association. A native of Wisconsin, Nelsen is a graduate of Wheaton College and holds M.A. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. with various companies, including Bulwark, DuPont Canada and Shell Canada Limited, as a customer relationship and marketing specialist. Most recently, as a marketing specialist at MWG Apparel, her emphasis was on customer relationship service and development.


A Mayoral Proclamation signed by Knox White to honor Jill Cox as the 2013 Best Friend of the Reedy River was recently read and presented at the Greenville City Council meeting on April 22. In 2012, Cox bought the Cleveland Park stables and donated the property to the city to avoid its development into an apartment complex. On Earth Day 2013, she was recognized for her extraordinary philanthropy benefitting the River and the surrounding Greenville community. The Friends of the Reedy River presented her with a framed photograph of the falls at Falls Park at the meeting.

Coldwell Banker Caine recently welcomed Lisa Hauser as a residential sales agent in its Spartanburg office. Hauser started in real estate in 2007 and has received prestigious real estate awards three years in a row.


EDTS, a full-service technology consulting firm specializing in network security and managed IT services for Southeastern business, recently added Katie Ard and Andrew Mailey to its team. Ard has over 30 years of business-to-business sales, management and marketing experience in a variety of industries, including media, publishing and telecommunications. Most recently, she served as sales executive with Morris Communications’ Main Street Digital business unit. Prior experience included professional sales or management roles with Hearst Media Group, Beasley Broadcasting and Bell Atlantic. Mailey joins EDTS as a support engineer from UTC Aerospace Systems, formerly Goodrich Inc. Technology integrator TSAChoice Inc., with offices in Asheville, N.C., and Greenville, recently announced that Voice/IT field technician Ben Bruce completed training and exams through TSAChoice’s business partner, Cisco, to earn his Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) certification. Bruce received his CCNA certification for Network Specialists, Administrators, and Support Engineers with one to three years of network engineering experience, enhancing his ability to install, configure, operate, and troubleshoot medium-sized routed and switched networks. He has been with TSAChoice’s Greenville office for one year after working as a Mitel Direct certified technician for four years. He has extensive experience working with voice over Internet protocol (VoIP), web, and data networks.


UBJ New to the Street

Photo by Brett Flashnick



N Ir g St










e St

cBe e





of fe


d yR an


Mi dw ay Rd

tt Bri

on Sax





2. Community First Real Estate recently held the ribboncutting at their new location at 11 N. Irvine St. in Greenville. They are a real estate firm offering real estate brokerage services to commercial and residential clients throughout the Upstate for more than six years with their corporate office in Easley. For more information, visit or call 864-233-6788.


1. ACE Bakery recently opened its 60,000 square foot facility at 131 Corporate Road in Gaffney. They will supply artisan-baked bread to the retail and foodservice sectors throughout the country, specifically focusing on the East Coast. The bakery will eventually produce breads 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year, and once at full capacity could produce up to 32 million baguettes a year. For more information, visit

Photo Provided

AQUOS BOARD It’s not just a display, it’s your business. Communicate, Collaborate, Disseminate on an affordable, large touch screen LCD whiteboard display to make every presentation unforgettable.

864.675.2000 |

aquos-board-10 X 2.668-AD .indd 1

2/23/2012 2:18:27 PM

UBJ Snapshot

Got an event you’d like to share? Submit your photos to:

DRIVE EVENT: Photos by Greg Beckner; SPARTANBURG CHAMBER EVENT: Photos Provided

People gather at Fluor Field for lunch, network opportunities and the Drive game against the Lakewood Blue Claws at the annual Drive Business Downtown: A Celebration in the Heart of Greenville.

From left, Rick Davis with Elliott Davis, Ed Ziegler with Craig Gaulden Davis and Cathy Jones with the South Carolina Governor’s School for the Arts and Humanities talk during the network session of the Drive Business Downtown event.

Eric Pitts, left, and Rich Waycaster, both with Elliott Davis, talk over lunch at the Drive Business Downtown event.

Members of the Spartanburg Area Chamber of Commerce gathered at the Piedmont Club for the 2013 Spring CEO Social.

May 3, 2013 Upstate bUsiness joUrnal 31

At the PULSE Upstate Young Professionals Hangar Party, held last week at the Greenville Jet Center, attendees were asked “What makes Greenville awesome?” – and their answers filled an entire posterboard.

May 3, 2013 UBJ  

Upstate Business Journal published for the Upstate of South Carolina. Designed and created by Community Journals.

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you