Business

Local News
5:02 pm
Tue April 14, 2015

Wells Fargo Reports Earnings Decline

Credit Wikipedia

Banking giant Wells Fargo reported a rare decline in its first-quarter earnings from a year ago. According to Wells Fargo officials, this year’s first-quarter net earnings dropped slightly to $5.8 billion, from $5.9 billion a year ago. 

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Local News
10:49 am
Tue April 14, 2015

Facebook's Data Center Keeps Your News Feed Ready

Inside a data center at Facebook in Forest City, NC.
Credit Lucy Perkins / WFAE

Have you ever thought about where your status updates and profile pictures really go after you post them on Facebook? Turns out, your online presence might live closer to you than you think. Facebook’s Forest City data center stores a lot of our online profiles. 

Dylan Hawkins is 21 and from Rutherford County. While his friends are on Facebook, he’s at Facebook’s data center in Forest City. It’s one of five in the world. He works with the servers that store the bits and pieces of our online lives.

"Some are caching information so it will take milliseconds instead of seconds," Hawkins says.

These servers help store information for the 890 million people who use Facebook every day.

Now, just because there’s a data center in Forest City doesn’t mean that your photos, etc. are definitely stored there for easy access. Your data goes to the center that’s most readily available – whether that’s here or in Lulea, Sweden.  


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Local News
11:19 am
Tue April 7, 2015

Solar Industry, Advocates Divided Over Rooftop Solar Bill

Credit Elliot Brown / Flickr

North Carolina put more solar power online last year than any state other than California. But companies or homeowners wanting to put solar panels on their roofs face major restrictions. State lawmakers have introduced a bill to change that. It’s drawing opposition from Duke Energy, but also dividing solar advocates.


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Local News
6:11 pm
Mon April 6, 2015

Bojangles To Take Company Public

Bojangles CEO Clifton Rutledge speaks at the opening of the company's 600th restaurant. The company has filed paperwork for an initial public stock offering.
Credit Robert Lahser / Charlotte Observer

Charlotte-based fast-food chain Bojangles’ on Monday said it has filed paperwork with the Securities and Exchange Commission for an initial public stock offering.

The amount of shares to be offered and the price range have not yet been determined, the company said. The stock would be listed on the Nasdaq under the ticker symbol “BOJA.”

Bank of America, Wells Fargo and Jefferies are among the banks leading the IPO. The offering is expected to consist of common stock to be sold by certain Bojangles’ stockholders.

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Local News
4:28 pm
Fri April 3, 2015

Two TV Shows, One Movie Get NC Film And Entertainment Grant

Three film productions will split North Carolina’s film and entertainment grant money for the first half of 2015. This is the first year for the state’s new, smaller incentives program for movie and TV productions. Lawmakers have set aside $10 million for the first six months of this year.

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Charlotte Observer
9:58 am
Fri April 3, 2015

Belk Exploring Possibility Of Selling Company

Charlotte may be losing another one of its iconic, homegrown retailers.

Belk, a third-generation department store chain that dates to the 1880s, confirmed Thursday that it has hired an investment bank to help it explore a possible sale or other “strategic alternatives.”

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Local News
6:02 am
Wed April 1, 2015

Sports Startup Entrepreneurs Pitch Ideas At Charlotte's 'Sports Tank'

Jason Kristufek, the founder of Fanstreamm at The Comedy Zone in Charlotte.
Credit Stephanie Dohmlo / TPG Sports Group

On the ABC show Shark Tank, entrepreneurs pitch their business ideas to potential investors. The investors, or sharks as they’re called, either sink the propositions, or get on board and invest. A Charlotte sports company called TPG Sports Group held their own version of the event last week called Sports Tank. Fourteen entrepreneurs from around the country pitched their ideas. 

Jason Kristufek flew to Charlotte from Lincoln, Nebraska. He’s seeking a $500,000 investment in his company.

"You’re always nervous. You’re in front of a crowd presenting. You never know what kind of questions they’re going to ask," he says.   

He’s the founder of Fanstreamm. It’s an app for groups of people to buy tickets to minor league games. It also collects data from users which they can use to market strategically and get users to buy more tickets. 

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Business
8:30 am
Mon March 30, 2015

Duke Energy Execs Have Bonuses Cut After Coal Ash Spill

Duke Energy will dock its top executives 35% of bonus pay after coal ash spill
Credit Courtesy of Duke Energy

The 2014 bonuses for five of Duke Energy’s top executives were cut by 35 percent. This is response, the company says, to last year’s coal ash spill into the Dan River. 

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Local News
3:27 pm
Sun March 29, 2015

Appraiser Explains The Hit To Charlotte's Budget

The City of Charlotte learned this month it would receive $14 million less in property taxes than expected next year. A redo of Mecklenburg County’s flawed 2011 revaluation suddenly found property was worth much less than previously estimated. Overall, property tax value fell by $2 billion. Commercial property makes up the largest share of the dip.


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Politics
9:58 am
Thu March 26, 2015

McCrory Says Sales Tax Bill Will Cause 'Great Harm'

Governor Pat McCrory addressing UNC officials on Wednesday.
Credit Gov. Pat McCrory

Governor Pat McCrory has now made it clear, he is against a Senate plan to redistribute sales taxes. And he’s looking for allies in that fight.

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