SC business notebook, July 9

July 9, 2014 

South Carolina Ports Authority new logo

Local & State

Midlands

Courtyard by Marriott across from Coliseum sold, to be renovated

A Charlotte-based hotel development and management company said Tuesday it has acquired the 189-room Courtyard by Marriott hotel in downtown Columbia adjacent to the core of the USC campus.

SREE Hotels did not announce how much it paid for the nine-story hotel located atat 630 Assembly St. – across from the Carolina Coliseum – but the company, which also owns the SpringHill Suites by Marriott Columbia Downtown/The Vista, said it would spend $4 million to renovate the hotel, including upgrades to the interior and exterior.

“This presence of a premium brand in an urban location, close to the dynamic university, sports, and government operations, makes this an ideal investment opportunity for us,” said Parag Patel, SREE Hotels chief finance and development officer, in a statement. “Having an existing presence in the market ... will help us maximize the synergies between the two hotels, and enhance our partnership with the University of South Carolina and other area businesses.”

Liberty Fellows class of 2016 includes eight from Midlands

The Liberty Fellows class of 2016, announced Tuesday, included eight businesspeople from the Midlands.

The lifelong program, which focuses on enhancing participants capacity to solved problems faced by state leaders, recruits diverse leaders and immerses them in four seminars over two years. It also pairs them with a mentor, and each fellow commits to a personal leadership project focused on South Carolina. In all, 22 new fellows were selected from more than 400 nominations from throughout South Carolina, bringing the total number of fellows to 230.

Midlands residents selected for the fellowship this year include: Laura Basile, a neonatologist at Palmetto Health Richland; Moir Donelson, president of Devro Inc.; J.C. Glick, director of Victory College, U.S. Army, Fort Jackson; Iris Griffin, director of Audit Services at SCANA Corp. ; Nikki Hall, commissioner and chairwoman of the S.C. Public Service Commission; Rick Reames, director of the S.C. Department in Columbia; and Ann Marie Stieritz, president and CEO, S.C. Council on Competitiveness.

The leadership initiative was founded by Anna Kate and Hayne Hipp, Wofford College and The Aspen Institute.

Coast

State Ports Authority unveils new logo

The S.C. State Ports Authority has unveiled a new logo. The new emblem, purposely designed to look like South Carolina’s geographic dimensions or a cargo vessel, was unveiled earlier this month, officials said.

“The design was selected for the modern way it incorporates the shape of our state, a ship and landside infrastructure,” said Erin Dhand SPA spokeswoman. “The new logo also distinguishes us from other ports, since the globe is a commonly used shape in the maritime and other industry logos.”

The new logo replaces the long-standing globe that has been used as SPA’s symbol since the 1990s, Dhand added. The new emblem was designed by Gil Shuler Graphic Design in Mount Pleasant. The SPA spent $27,500 on the design and implementation of the new mark, Dhand said.

Nation & World

Ford recalls Edge and Flex SUVs for variety of problems

This year’s record wave of automotive recalls continued Tuesday with Ford Motor Co. calling back about 101,000 vehicles in North America–including its Edge and Flex sport-utility vehicles, for a variety of problems.

This latest action demonstrates how automakers are recalling vehicles for major defects and minor issues. The recalls included more than 90,000 SUVs and sedans that can have a linkage problem that shuts off power to the wheels, as well as 368 Transit Connect commercial vans because the brake fluid reservoir cap has a European rather than U.S. label.

Automakers have become sensitive to recalls after Toyota paid a $1.2 billion federal fine this year for misleading regulators about defects, and General Motors became the target of numerous federal investigations for waiting about a decade to recall cars with a faulty ignition system linked to more than 50 crashes and at least 13 deaths.

Ford’s recalls bring the number of vehicles called back by automakers in the U.S. to about 40 million this year, surpassing the previous high of 30.8 million, in 2004.

Roddie Burris, Kristy Eppley Rupon, The (Charleston) Post & Courier and Los Angeles Times contributed.

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