PEE DEE BUSINESS BUZZ
JBE INC. ANNOUNCES NEW JOBS IN DARLINGTON COUNTY
JBE Inc., a supplier to the automotive, aerospace, and lawn and garden industries, announced the addition of at least 20 new jobs at its Darlington County facility as a result of a new contract secured with Pure Power Technologies in Columbia. The company also announced that it has acquired an AS9100 certification.JBE was assisted in its endeavor for the new certification by the S.C. Department of Commerce, South Carolina Manufacturing Extension Partnership (SCMEP), as well as the Darlington County Economic Development Partnership.
TOPSPOT IMS LAUNCHES SAFE
TopSpot Internet Marketing recently launched the new website for Safe Harbor Access Systems (www.safe-harbor.com). The site features interactive catalog and quote capabilities designed to assist engineers sourcing product information. Safe Harbor targets the bulk loading and unloading of petrochemicals. TopSpot (www.topspotims.com) specializes in helping Industrial companies maximize their online presence through pay-per-click, search engine optimization, advanced analytics and site development. TopSpot is one of only 37 U.S. companies recognized as an authorized reseller of Google Adwords. TopSpot is represented locally by John Chilton.
FIRST RELIANCE BANK NAMED
ONE OF THE "BEST PLACES TO
WORK" IN SOUTH CAROLINA FOR
First Reliance Bank's commitment to making its customers' lives better has resulted in the bank being named to South Carolina's "Best Places to Work" list for 2011. First Reliance Bank's unique culture focuses on offering customers an incredible experience which can only be accomplished with a team of highly motivated, service-oriented associates. "First Reliance associates are a special group who appreciate being able to use their individual talents to serve their customers and community, says Rick Saunders. "We go to great lengths to recruit people who are committed to our purpose of making the lives of our customers better. Helping our customers has been especially important during this tough economy. Our customers rely on our associates to help them and appreciate their caring attitude. Along with the bank's unique, custom-designed programs, and unmatched convenience, our associates' are a key reason why we have achieved a 99% customer satisfaction rating. We are very proud of our team's commitment and appreciate being recognized as one of the best places to work in South Carolina."
BRANDON AGENCY LANDS NEW ACCOUNTS
The Brandon Agency will handle all public relations and search engine optimization (SEO) efforts for Haig Point, a 1,050-acre member-owned community located on Daufuskie Island, between Hilton Head Island, South Carolina and Savannah, Georgia, and surrounded by the waters of the Calibogue Sound, the Intracoastal Waterway and the Atlantic Ocean. The 250-home, private community features a diverse range of amenities and services including beautiful beaches, a clubhouse, fitness center, equestrian center, croquet, boating, fishing and bicycle rentals, among other things. Driwood Moulding Company has partnered with The Brandon Agency to develop and execute an integrated marketing program. The Brandon Agency is responsible for developing a new creative campaign and website for the company, as well as executing all media planning and buying.
POLYQUEST INC. ANNOUNCES EXPANSION IN DARLINGTON COUNTY
PolyQuest Inc., North America's largest distributor of virgin and recycled polyethylene terephthalate (PET) announced the expansion of its Darlington County recycling and distribution facility. The expansion will involved a total estimated investment of $8 million and create approximately 20 new jobs. The facility will provide 25 million pounds of additional capacity annually for recycled PET with full production starting in January 2012.
HARVEST HOPE'S PEE DEE
BRANCH PROVIDED ALMOST
6 MILLION POUNDS OF FOOD
TO THE PEE DEE
Poverty and unemployment continue to have lasting effects across South Carolina, and impacts the lives of many throughout Pee Dee communities. Unemployment averages 15.31% across the eight counties in Harvest Hope Food Bank's Pee Dee service area. In South Carolina, over 17% of the population lives in poverty and over 23% of South Carolina children live below the poverty line. Throughout Harvest Hope's Pee Dee service area, over 79,000 people, or 22.06% of the population, live below the poverty line. Almost 34% of families with children in the Pee Dee live below the poverty line. Harvest Hope's eight county Pee Dee service area includes Chesterfield, Darlington, Lee, Clarendon, Florence, Marlboro, Dillon and Marion Counties. To meet the needs of those suffering from hunger resulting from poverty and unemployment, Harvest Hope distributed 5,890,403 pounds of food in the Pee Dee last year, an increase of 24% over the previous year. That's the equivalent of almost 400,000 meals. Harvest Hope feeds approximately 48,000 South Carolinians a week across its entire 20 county service area. Harvest Hope works with approximately 150 agency partners to feed the hungry in the Pee Dee.
CCU NAMED "BEST COLLEGE
BUY" FOR THIRD YEAR
Coastal Carolina University has been named one of "America's 100 Best College Buys." More than 1,060 colleges and universities were surveyed for the designation, which is presented annually by Institutional Research & Evaluation Inc.
To be considered for the award, colleges and universities must be accredited, four-year institutions granting bachelor's degrees and meet the following criteria:
- offer full residential facilities including dining services
- report a high school grade point average (GPA) and/or SAT or ACT score for entering freshmen that is equal to or above the national average
- have an out-of-state cost of attendance that does not exceed the national average cost attendance by more than 10 percent
Recently, CCU also received a favorable ranking in the U.S. News and World Report's annual survey and was included in the "America's Best Colleges" survey conducted annually by Forbes and the Center for College Affordability and Productivity.
NEW FLORENCE RESTAURANT
JP Scurry of Colliers International brokered the lease of the 1.94 acre, former Pier 1 location at Magnolia Mall for use as a Buffalo Wild Wings Grill & Bar. The existing structure will be demolished this spring and construction of a new building will begin shortly thereafter. Buffalo Wild Wings will be opening the new site in late summer or early fall 2011.
DRS. BRUCE AND LEE FOUNDATION PROVIDES $50,000 TO HARVEST HOPE FOOD BANK
Funds from the donation were used to purchase two banks of freezers that have already proven instrumental in providing the storage and distribution of nutritious food to hungry families and individuals in the Pee Dee region. The donation was made by The Drs. Bruce and Lee Foundation in honor of Harvest Hope co-founder Michael J. Mungo, who passed away last year.
DARLINGTON COUNTY SCHOOL DISTRICT, S.C. GOVERNOR'S SCHOOL FOR SCIENCE AND MATHEMATICS, COKER COLLEGE AND SONOCO JOIN FORCES TO LAUNCH NEW PULSE PROGRAM
An unparalleled public-private partnership has been formed to implement a comprehensive scholastic excellence program in Hartsville public schools that will expand curriculum opportunities and further improve student achievement through collaborative academic and social development initiatives. The PULSe (Partners for Unparalleled Local Scholastic excellence) Program is a first-of-its-kind publicprivate partnership involving the Darlington County School District, the South Carolina Governor's School for Science and Mathematics (GSSM), Coker College and Sonoco. Sonoco will fund the initiative through a $5 million grant that will be paid over five years.
FLORENCE AREA MERCHANTS WELCOM NEW ALLSTATE INSURANCE AGENCY
The Glenn Ham Allstate Insurance Agency opened in April at 2527 S. Cashua Drive (located in The Shoppes at Celebration). The Glenn Ham Agency offers a complete line of products and services, including auto, property, commercial, life insurance and other financial products.
NESA ANNUAL REPORT RELEASED
The North eastern Strategic Alliance (NeSA), announced that eighteen companies expanded in the NeSA region, resulting in more than $132,000,000 in new capital investment and the creation of more than 1,356 new jobs. The report shows that NeSA officials also contacted officials from 3,640 businesses, held 210 meetings with companies, consultants and brokers, went on 18 business development missions, and pursued 111 active leads. overall, the NeSA region saw a 2.4% decrease in unemployment compared with a state decrease of 1.9% and a national increase of 0.1%.
FMU OFFERS MORE THAN $150,000 IN NEW SCHOLARSHIPS
Francis Marion University students will benefit from six new scholarships totaling more than $150,000 in the coming year. These scholarships were established to support students of all ages with a variety of interests, including biology, business administration, public and community service, library science and music.
THE LITCHFIELD COMPANY NAMED EXCLUSIVE SALES COMPANY FOR "THE LAKES"
Representatives from The Litchfield Company today announced they have reached an agreement to be the exclusive
sales agent for the next phase of The Lakes community located on Highway 17 Bypass in Surfside Beach, S.C. As exclusive sales agent, The Litchfield Company will be responsible for sales and marketing of all wooded and lakefront homesites within Phase Xv. Homesites from $39,900. Currently, The Lakes is a community of 502 lots which are constructed of 483 single family homes plus The Lakes Recreation Center. This is a custom home community that reflects a wide variety of style and design features while carefully maintaining the community feel as governed by an Architectural Control Committee.
GSSM STUDENTS TO CONDUCT COLLEGE-LEVEL RESEARCH IN ENGLAND DURING SUMMER 2011
The South Carolina Governor's School for Science and Mathematics (GSSM), in collaboration with Force Protection Industries, Inc., of Ladson, South Carolina, is broadening its Research exchange Scholars Program (ReSP) by expanding into england in the summer of 2011.Thanks to a $20,000 investment, three students from GSSM's residential program will be selected to spend seven weeks conducting real-world scientific research alongside skilled mentors at a British University. england will be the second international research location for GSSM.
In honor of the 10th anniversary of Santee Cooper Green Power, the utility and Berkeley County Water & Sanitation dedicated the new Berkeley Green Power Generating Station, bringing to Santee Cooper's back door a renewable Green Power project. Santee Cooper was the first utility to generate renewable energy in South Carolina, beginning in 2001 with a landfill generating station at the Horry County Landfill. Today's dedication brings to six the number of Santee Cooper renewable Green Power stations with a total capacity of 28 megawatts of electricity, and it signals continued commitment by the state-owned utility to environmental stewardship in Berkeley County and throughout South Carolina. The Berkeley project generates electricity through two 1.6-MW Caterpillar engine generators fed by a system of pipes and wells that collects methane gas created as debris in the landfill decays. The power generated at the station is distributed through Berkeley electric Cooperative's system.
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