Business

Business news and information from Charlotte and the Carolinas. 

©Sean Busher and NASCAR Hall of Fame

Charlotte officials have struck a deal to forgive roughly $20 million in debt the city owes for the NASCAR Hall of Fame. Billed as an economic boon, the facility has never broken even since it opened in 2010, and has failed to pay off its original loans.


Courtesy of Socialtopias

When you think of social networking names like Twitter and Facebook come to mind. On December 31st, a small Charlotte company will take on those multi-billion dollar behemoths.

The company is called Socialtopias. And its office at the Charlotte Venture Center on South Church Street holds all the white boards and the small conference table you’d expect from a startup, but with a Charlotte twist. A large window is coated with a plastic-pixilated rendering of the Charlotte's skyline.

Ben Bradford / WFAE

2015 could be a bellwether year for the commercial drone industry. The Federal Aviation Administration has projected 10,000 of the devices will be in U.S. skies by 2017. They could survey land for oil companies, film aerial shots in Hollywood, and one day perhaps deliver your food. But, the industry’s impact will depend largely on an upcoming federal decision.


Ben Bradford / WFAE

Leaders of some of the region’s largest companies have high hopes for the coming year. At the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce’s annual Economic Outlook luncheon, CEOs of Bank of America and Duke Energy, among others, discussed the state of the economy, gas prices, health care, and regulation.


Ben Bradford / WFAE

A major off-shoring company is expanding in North Carolina and receiving state incentives to do so. Last month, the North Carolina Governor’s Office announced Cognizant Technology Solutions, a Fortune 500 company, would create 500 high-paying jobs in North Carolina, including opening a new office in Charlotte.

Elliot Brown / Flickr

Electric utilities and solar energy developers across the U.S. have clashed over how much the utilities should have to pay for the energy supplied to them by homeowners with solar panels. In South Carolina, the sides reached an agreement Friday and both are claiming a win.


North Carolina has recovered the jobs it lost during the deep economic downturn,  according to the state Commerce Department's latest unemployment report. Here's some context:

The recession got started a little late in North Carolina – job growth continued until February 2008. That's the month when employment peaked. Then North Carolina crashed through 24 straight months – two years – of job losses.

The City of Charlotte has asked the Federal Aviation Administration to decide who will run Charlotte Douglas International Airport. The letter comes weeks after a judge ruled in the city’s favor that a state-created commission does not have authority to take control of the airport, unless the FAA approves it.

Charlotte’s city council has run the airport for 78 years.

City attorney Bob Hagemann says the city wants a final answer.

“There has been a cloud over the airport going on two years. We think it’s time to work hard to remove that cloud,” says Hagemann.

Duncan McFadyen

A new company says it will turn the former Philip Morris plant in Concord into a high tech manufacturing facility. Executives from Alevo made the announcement Tuesday. They will use the space to build large-scale battery arrays that, they say, will “redefine energy.”

Julie Rose

For months, Chiquita’s board has been spurning an offer to merge with financial company Safra and juice maker Cutrale. Monday, Chiquita announced it will take the buyout by the two Brazilian companies.

So what does this mean for Charlotte? 

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