Updated: Wed, 02/20/2013 - 01:04

Business in Savannah News Summary

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App available for self-guided tours

S.G. Adventures, a Savannah company specializing in self-guided tour apps for smartphones, has released a new app called Historic Savannah.

The app, conceived by K. J. Stewart and Shannon Scott, was produced locally by S.G. Adventures and Tour Buddy apps. It includes text, photos, audio and video presentations on all 22 of the city’s squares, the historic sites around each square, River Street and Forsyth Park.

The user will have a tour map, complete with suggested routes, a GPS map for directions, a picture gallery and audio narrations for each site. Videos also are available for each site with a feature known as the “pop-up tour guide,” a video tour guide that pops up to tell you about the site where you’re standing.

The app has been released for Android and is to be available for the iPhone next week. The cost is $2.99, and a “lite” or free version is slated to be released shortly. The Historic Savannah App is available at Googleplay, Facebook and most major app distribution centers.

Daniel Defense hiring up to 60 positions

Daniel Defense will host a job fair Feb. 21 to recruit and fill up to 60 positions at its locations in Black Creek and Ridgeland, S.C.

Jobs include accounting manager, tool makers and machine operators, as well as other openings across most departments. Qualified individuals are invited to drop by and register in person from noon-6 p.m. Thursday at the Embassy Suites Hotel at 145 Mulberry Blvd.

If unable to apply in person, candidates can apply online at www.danieldefense.com.

For additional information, contact Peggy O’Neill at poneill@danieldefense.com.

Historic foundation gets second half of grant

Historic Savannah Foundation was recently awarded the second half of a two-year $75,000 grant from The 1722 Foundation, a national leader in the field of historic property redevelopment.

Historic Savannah Foundation originally received the revolving fund grant in 2012 and used the funding to buy an endangered property at 222 E. 32nd St. in Savannah’s Thomas Square Streetcar District. The three-bedroom residence, built in 1900, is one of more than 350 threatened local structures Historic Savannah Foundation has preserved through the revolving fund, which acquires historic properties through donation, options or purchase.

A property qualifies for the revolving fund if it is endangered, has historical significance and is marketable for sale.

“This generous grant from The 1722 Foundation enables Historic Savannah Foundation to continue to save Savannah’s historic structures, in keeping with our founding mission established in 1955,” said Daniel Carey, the foundation’s president and CEO.

GSU offers MBA to South Carolina residents

STATESBORO — Georgia Southern University invites Bluffton and Hilton Head Island area professionals to learn how they can earn a master of business administration (MBA) degree while attending classes in Savannah and pay in-state Georgia tuition rates.

A drop-in, MBA information session will be held March 7 from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. at the Comfort Suites at 23 Towne Drive in Bluffton. Lunch will be provided.

MBA advisers from the College of Business Administration will be available to answer questions about the program, the border county fee waiver for Beaufort and Jasper counties, entrance exams, the application process and online degree options.

To reserve a space, contact the MBA office at 912-478-5767 or mba@georgiasouthern.edu.

SCORE president to hold workshop

Marjorie Young, president of the Savannah SCORE Chapter, will conduct a SCORE workshop from 1-4 p.m. Feb. 27 at the Ward Hernandez Building, 400 Osborne St., in St. Marys.

The workshop, which is free, will be livestreamed at: http:www.stmarysvod.com/score.

For more information and to reserve a space, email renee@stmarysdda.com or call 912-882-8111. Seating is limited to 30.

Young will discuss the difference between advertising and public relations.

She will outline five strategies for small businesses to build a positive, recognizable reputation in the community, five public relations strategies for using on line media and tips for using social media.

Nominations sought for UGA’s 40 Under 40

ATHENS — The University of Georgia Alumni Association is accepting nominations for the 2013 40 Under 40 recognition program. The 40 Under 40 recognizes and celebrates UGA alumni under the age of 40 who are business, community, educational and/or philanthropic leaders.

The nomination process is open through April 12. Candidates must be UGA graduates, under the age of 40 by Sept. 1, 2013, and willing to submit a photo for UGA publications and media. Nominations must be submitted by someone other than the nominee, preferably by fellow alumni, employers or community leaders who are not members of the nominee’s immediate family.

Nominating forms are available at www.alumni.uga.edu/40u40. Emailed or mailed nominations will not be considered.

Honorees will be notified in July, and an awards luncheon will be held in Atlanta on Sept. 19.

For more information, contact Julie Cheney at jcheney@uga.edu or 706-542-2251.

Vacation rental company opens in Savannah

Lucky Savannah, a new full-service vacation rental company, celebrated its grand opening this month with a ribbon cutting and open house showcasing two Jones Street properties in downtown Savannah.

Lucky Savannah offers the opportunity to live like a local in Savannah’s National Landmark Historic District. The company specializes in high-quality vacation rentals for long-term or short-term visits to Georgia’s First City.

Lucky Savannah properties include a historic cottage along the cobblestones of East Jones Street, a pied-a-tierre above Mrs. Wilkes Boarding House, a loft on Charlton Street and a luxurious private home on State Street. Vacation rentals range from one to six bedrooms and sleep up to 14 guests.

The company provides complimentary VIP passes to Mrs. Wilkes’ Boarding House with reservations for select properties and provides a full range of concierge services.

For more information, go to www.luckysavannah.com or call 912-495-8788.

Clothes gathered to help unemployed women

To help women who are unable to get jobs because they don’t have proper clothing for job interviews, dressbarn will team with the nonprofit organization Dress for Success, to gather 60,000 articles of clothing as part of its S.O.S. — Send One Suit — Weekend donation drive March 7-10.

For the 11th straight year, all 830 dressbarn stores across the country will serve as drop-off sites for new or gently used professional attire, including suits, dress shirts, blazers, pants, dresses and shoes.

More than 55,000 professional items of clothing were collected during last year, and the stores would like to collect 60,000 pieces this year.

All of them will be given to Dress for Success, which will distribute the articles nationwide to women looking to gain a job or trying to re-enter the workforce.

In Savannah, dressbarn stores are at 11 Gateway Blvd. South and 7400 Abercorn St.

Transport company reaches milestone

MOBILE, Ala. — ASF Intermodal has exceeded 150 trucks on the road, the company announced, a milestone that comes just as it marks the anniversary of its second year of operations.

ASF Intermodal delivered its first load on Feb. 28, 2011. Now, the company has hauled more than 50,000 loads through its six terminals, located in Savannah, Atlanta, Charleston, Houston, Memphis and Mobile.

“2012 presented its challenges with the national election, economic uncertainties and the looming ILA strike, but our team rose to the occasion and continued our growth plan, which resulted in over 50 percent growth,” said ASF Intermodal president Michael Smith.

Entering its third year, the company said it has expanded its sales team, created a new director of sales position and introduced internal recognition programs to honor outstanding associates and drivers.

Hugo’s restaurant wins ‘champion’ title

HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. — The winner of the champion’s title at this year’s 2013 Chamber Restaurant Week was Hugo’s Seafood & Steakhouse.

Hudson’s Seafood House on the Docks took second place and Sea Grass Grille placed third.

The fifth annual Restaurant Week, presented by the Hilton Head Island-Bluffton Chamber of Commerce from Jan. 26-Feb. 2, drew 75 area restaurants with special value-priced menus.

Brandon Arrieta of Hugo’s Seafood & Steakhouse said his staff served more than 1,500 guests during the week.

More than 53,000 people visited the Chamber Restaurant Week web page to view participating restaurant menus and websites.

Nursing center adds space, resources

UniHealth Post-Acute Care-Savannah, a 120-bed nursing care center at 12825 White Bluff road, has begun construction of a 20,000-square-foot addition.

Features of the addition include an advanced therapy suite equipped with an indoor pool, the addition of 19 private rooms, a coffee shop, an Internet cafe, a library and a movie theater.

A news release said the new amenities will not only enhance the physical environment of the center but will also aid in healing patients with new, state-of-the-art therapy equipment and electronic medical documentation.

The facility specializes in serving the needs of patients who need rehabilitation after leaving the hospital and also cares for patients who require long-term assistance.

“We know that the improvements under way at this center will better the lives of all of our patients, and that is what drives our organization. These improvements have been planned for many years, and we are thankful to have all the approvals that we need and to now see the renovations taking shape,” said Neil L. Pruitt Jr., chairman and CEO.

Seminar scheduled on international trade

The World Trade Center Savannah will present a seminar on import compliance, documentation and procedures March 5 from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at World Trade Center Savannah, 131 Hutchinson Island Road.

The World Academy, which offers import/export trade compliance education and training, will lead the seminar.

It will include: import compliance management, managing import documents, incoterms, harmonize tariff schedule (hts) classification, recordkeeping, supervisions and control, liability for duties, customs power of attorney, duty drawback, port 9/11 issues, customs trade partnership against terrorism (c-tpat), container security initiative (csi), importer security filing (isf) and 24-hour manifest requirements

Attendees will earn 6.5 NCBFAA CCS Points. Cost is $75 and includes lunch. To register, go to http://wtcsavannahimportseminar-es2.eventbrite.com/. For additional information, contact Tory Grubbs at tgrubbs@wtcsavannah.org or 912-447-9704.

Pooler Chamber to host networking event

The Pooler Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Bureau Inc. will host a business after hours networking event Thursday, Feb. 21, from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the Holiday Inn & Suites, 103 San Drive, Pooler, near Interstate 95 exit 102.

Register and pre-pay by Feb. 18, and the cost is $12 for chamber members and $15 for non-members. After Feb. 18, add $5.

This event will include St. Patrick’s Day celebration surprises. For more information contact office@poolerchamber.com or 912-748-0110.

Beaufort firm named 2013 Blue Ribbon award winner

BEAUFORT, S.C. — The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has picked Kazoobie Kazoos as a 2013 Blue Ribbon Small Business Award winner.

The chamber said Kazoobie Kazoos were recognized for its dedication to the principles of free enterprise and its contributions to restoring jobs and prosperity.

“The Blue Ribbon Award winners show that, even facing uncertainty and economic challenges, small businesses can grow and succeed,” said Thomas J. Donohue, U.S. Chamber president and CEO.

The awards program, sponsored by Sam’s Club, honors companies that demonstrate excellent business practices in strategy, employee development, community involvement and customer service.

Parker’s recognized for school donations

Parker’s convenience stores have earned a Convenience Retailing University award of excellence at the organization’s conference in Glendale, Ariz.

The award was presented by CSP, a convenience store media company, in honor of the Fueling the Community program, which donates a portion of Parker’s gas sales on the first Wednesday of each month to area schools.

“The Parker’s Fueling the Community program is a great example of how convenience retailers can make a difference in their communities,” said Steve Holtz, news director for CSP Information Group.

The charitable initiative launched in the fall of 2011 has donated money to public and private schools in every community where Parker’s does business.

“Customers want to support companies that are giving back,” said Greg Parker, president and CEO of Parker’s. “So we think it’s really important that we’re giving back in a profound way to the communities that are supporting us.”

Local firm wins ‘rising star’ award

Restaurant Manager, a national company that offers software management systems for restaurants, has named Savannah’s One Stop I.T. as its 2012 Rising Star.

One Stop I.T., in business since 2006, is the Savannah region’s dealer for Restaurant Manager. The Rising Star award is given to the U.S. dealer with the highest overall sales numbers, and One Stop I.T. posted a double-digit sales increase over 2011.

“We knew we had another great year, but there are so many hard-working dealer teams just like us,” said sales manager Antoine Gedroyc. “It means a lot to be honored by your peers for a job well done.”

For more information, go to one-stop-it.com.

Business expo spotlights business community

HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. — Business EXPO, presented by the Hilton Head Island-Bluffton Chamber of Commerce, will be held Feb. 26 and 27 at the Westin Hilton Head Island Resort & Spa.

Business Expo offers two networking events each night with EXPO After Hours sponsored by Hargray and Palmetto Electric.

Anissa Freeman Starnes, regional development director with Constant Contact, will present a seminar on email marketing and social media on Feb. 27 at 3 p.m.

Business owners can learn more about how health care changes in Washington will impact their business at a seminar presented by insurance industry experts at 1 p.m. on Feb. 27.

EXPO is free during the day and $10 to attend EXPO After Hours. Seminar fees are $15 and include EXPO After Hours. For details go to hiltonheadchamber.org or call 843-341-8379.

Tour company supports Habit for Humanity

Habitat for Humanity Savannah has received a $1,000 donation from Old Savannah Tours to support its programs.

Old Savannah Tours’ Will Green presented the check to Virginia Brown, Habitat’s executive director, on Jan. 31. The company donated a portion of every ticket purchased through its 2012 “Home for Holidays” tour to Habitat Savannah.

“We want to recognize Habitat for Humanity for its ongoing work to provide affordable housing in Savannah,” Green said. “At Old Savannah Tours, we believe in supporting organizations that change the community in which we do business.”

Habitat for Humanity Savannah builds affordable housing for low-income families. Houses are simple in construction, energy efficient and sustainable by design and located in transitional areas to support neighborhood revitalization. “Corporate partners keep Habitat Savannah’s programs affordable,” Brown said.

Construction begins on Abercorn Terrace apartments

Developer Chance Partners began work Feb. 5 on a 32-unit apartment complex along Abercorn Street at 61st Street. The project, known as the Avenues on 61st, is scheduled for completion in July.

The Avenues on 6lst will feature three- and four-bedroom townhouse-style apartments. It is being built on the north end of the former Abercorn Terrace site, the rest of which is leased by the Savannah College of Art and Design.

The project was approved by the Chatham County-Savannah Metropolitan Planning Commission in June and was known as Savannah Lofts at the time.

The Avenues on 61st will be the first Savannah complex for Atlanta-based Chance Partners. The developer specializes in urban infill housing and has completed several high-profile apartment projects in Atlanta, including those at the Ritz-Carlton Buckhead and Atlantic Station.

“We believe now is the ideal time to introduce our urban-style housing concept to the Savannah market,” said Judd Bobilin, president and CEO of Chance Partners. “Savannah is an extremely strong economic market that has been overlooked for years. Its consistent economic growth, aging multi-family inventory and strong rental and occupancy rates will be coupled with our unique product, competitive rents and preferred location to create a truly one-of-a-kind apartment community.”

Kids Who Care nominations sought

As part of the Kids Who Care program, five $1,000 college scholarships will be awarded to local high school seniors in recognition of their outstanding volunteer service and community involvement.

The Junior League of Savannah is inviting nominations of high school seniors who have been active volunteers. Nominations may be made by principals, counselors, students, community groups or individuals.

For more information and to complete the application, go to the Junior League of Savannah website at www.jrleaguesav.org and click on the Community Impact tab. Application deadline is March 15. For more information, contact Melissa Holland Wedincamp at melissajholland@gmail.com.

Synovus receives customer service awards

Sea Island Bank, a division of Synovus Bank, has announced that Synovus has received 17 national awards from Greenwich Associates for excellence in middle market and small business banking.

Among 750 banks evaluated nationwide, only 39 received national excellence awards for middle market banking and only 42 for small business banking. Synovus received four regional awards as well.

“We are always focused on improving our customers’ experience every time they do business with us, and these awards demonstrate our bank’s dedication to delivering exceptional customer service,” said Sea Island Bank President and CEO Darron Burnette.

In compiling the rankings, Greenwich Associates, a financial services firm based in Stamford, Conn., interviewed more than 14,000 middle-market firms with sales of $10 million-$500 million and 17,500 small businesses with sales of $1 million-$10 million.

Sea Island Bank operates in Metter, Savannah and Statesboro. For more information, visit www.seaislandbank.com.

Georgia Southern a ‘preferred destination’

STATESBORO — Georgia Southern University set a new record for enrollment with 20,574 students from 49 states and 93 countries last fall along with a new record high average SAT score of 1115. For the third consecutive year, U.S. News & World Report has recognized Georgia Southern as one of the top national universities students want to attend.

Last week, the magazine looked at the yield rate which is determined by the number of first year students who enrolled after being accepted. For fall 2012, 5,456 students were accepted by Georgia Southern, and 3,542 enrolled. GSU’s yield rate was 64.9 percent, better than Yale University and MIT. Georgia Southern is the only university from the southeastern United States in the top 10.

“Georgia Southern is changing, it is growing and more and more students are making it their top choice for their college education,” said Brooks Keel, president of Georgia Southern. “I really do think people, particularly parents and alumni who may not have visited campus in a long time, are surprised when they see how much has changed.”

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