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Business Pulse: 4-27-14
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I have good news, boys and girls. There’s business activity coming from every direction.
Let’s start at Mt. View Industrial Park which has been transformed over the past three years with the addition of Miniature Precision Components and Sansin. Where there used to be an empty field, there are now two large industrial buildings.
MPC has been operational for over two years. Sansin is getting up and running after finalizing a lease for Spec Building 3 earlier this year.
Sansin is a Japanese company owned by Naoyuke Ito. It’s been doing business for over 40 years and is expected to create around 150 local jobs when it reaches full capacity.
I stopped by Sansin’s new facility Friday and was surprised at the high level of activity. There were about 15 subcontractors scurrying around the property getting the building ready.
While I was there, a cement mixer drove into the building and poured concrete for an overhead crane that will soon be installed. A large press is expected to be delivered the first week in May as the first piece of heavy duty equipment.
As I’ve mentioned before, Sansin has close ties to Yorozu, but it will not be a proverbial one-trick pony. The company has a number of other customers in the fold and will be capable of doing work outside the automotive industry.
Sansin officials hope to be very busy setting up equipment in May with their sights set on starting production at their new plant in June. The process of creating jobs is not quick.

DN Plastics
not going up

There was talk about all the progress taking place at the DN Plastics site in Morrison during the Industrial Development Board meeting earlier this month. It was even said DN Plastics owner Raj Agrawal wanted to be operational at that location beginning June 13.
With all the talk, I decided to drive out to the site on Manchester Highway to see the excitement for myself. What I found is DN Plastics looks like it will have a much longer wait to start local production than June 13.
Consider this comparison. Look at the picture on this page of the Sansin building. Sansin wants to start production there in June. Now turn to page 4-C and look at the picture of the DN Plastics site. DN Plastics wants to start production there in June. What do you think is the likelihood of that happening? I just thought I would throw that question out for discussion.

Get a job
making pretzels

It was last week I told you about Auntie Anne’s Pretzels and its new location inside Walmart. I said it appeared the restaurant was very close to opening, and in fact it is.
However, there is one sticking point. While the storefront and equipment are ready to go, Auntie Anne’s hasn’t found enough employees.
“We’re having problems finding a manager,” said Auntie Anne’s representative Kyle Balding. “I’m looking for someone who has some management experience.”
Kyle said it would take 10 to 15 employees to run the store. He said the manager would receive full training.
If you’re interested, give Kyle a call at (954) 304-3933. As for the store itself, Kyle said it would give away free samples on its first day of operation to give everyone a taste of Auntie Anne’s.
These might not be high-paying manufacturing jobs, but the addition of Auntie Anne’s is creating new jobs for McMinnville. Three cheers for Auntie Anne’s.

The saga
of Billy’s

Several folks have asked me about what happened in the famous burger war between Billy’s Restaurant and Sparta Street Kitchen. As many of you may recall, the story was big news three weeks ago, but it’s quietly slipped into the background.
For those who may be unfamiliar with the story, here’s a 20-second recap. Billy Foutch sold his popular restaurant in Newtown, named Billy’s Restaurant, to Darryl Bouldin and Danny Vickers. The sale was finalized Sept. 30, 2013.
Under terms of the agreement, Billy was not to compete against his former restaurant for a period of two (2) years. Then his daughter bought the former Wilma Jean’s Kitchen and turned it into Sparta Street Kitchen. Billy did not have any ownership of the restaurant but was seen working there.
I hope all this serves to make the long story short. Attorneys got involved and Billy was taken to court for failing to abide by the conditions of the no-compete agreement. The case was originally scheduled to be heard in McMinnville, but it was transferred to Manchester.
For those of you wondering what happened in Manchester, it was decided to close the case and hear it in chambers. This was done to keep people like me from knowing the outcome.
What I can tell you is a settlement has been reached in the case, but it is a confidential settlement. This means the two parties involved in the litigation have reached some sort of agreement, but they are not supposed to reveal what that agreement is.
Since nobody is talking, it’s up to me to speculate on what will happen. My speculation is Sparta Street Kitchen will remain closed until Sept. 30, 2015. That’s when the two-year, no-compete agreement will end. At that point there will be no strings attached and Billy, or his daughter, will be free to do whatever they want with the property on Sparta Street.
Make plans to attend the grand opening Oct. 1, 2015. That’s just a hunch.

Great idea for
Mother’s Day

I’m always searching for a neat gift to give my mom for Mother’s Day. It’s with that in mind the Southern Standard has printed a cookbook featuring recipes from our readers that’s available at our office beginning Monday.
The cookbook is printed on heavy, glossy paper and is available for a mere $7. Think of how much love and happiness you can bring your mom for such a low price.
“We are pleased so many of our readers took advantage of the opportunity to share their recipes with the community,” said Standard publisher Patricia Zechman, who admits she is a sweet lover. “I can’t wait to try the earthquake cake.”
Cakes and pies are prominently featured along with recipes for just about everything else including meatloaf, chicken pot pie, chicken spaghetti, manicotti, scalloped salmon, sweet potato casserole, tater tot casserole, and heavenly frozen fruit salad. There’s even a recipe called Patricia Zechman’s Fried Apples you won’t want to miss.
There’s a lot of joy baked into this cookbook so buy a copy. Stop by our office at 105 College Street to get yours while supplies last. Office hours are Monday thru Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. If you’d like a mailed copy, the phone number is 473-2191.

Dixie Drive-In
to open Monday

It was several weeks ago I told you Layne Mullins had purchased the Dixie Drive-In on Nashville Highway and was in the process of reopening the restaurant. I’m pleased to report Layne has worked hard getting the restaurant ready and it will reopen this Monday at 10:30 a.m.
“We’re going to have an opening special of a hamburger basket with drink for $5,” said Layne. “I’ve redone the menu a little bit to add BBQ, but we’re still going to have funnel cakes and cotton candy.”
Dixie Drive-In is located past Centertown on your way to Woodbury near the Warren-Cannon County line. Outside of Kat’s Diner, I can’t think of another restaurant in the area.
Another couple menu additions will be catfish dinners which will be served on Fridays, chili cheese dogs, and nachos, which will be offered for $2 as an opening special. You can order inside or call ahead and pick up your food from the drive-thru window. The phone number is 939-0122.
Business hours are Monday, Wednesday and Thursday from 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Friday and Saturday from 10:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Dixie Drive-In is closed Tuesday and Sunday.
In my previous article about Dixie Drive-In, I mentioned Layne would be getting some help from her husband, Chad, when he has some free time between cleaning carpets. For some reason, people read that and thought Chad is no longer cleaning carpets.
To clarify, Chad Mullins and Major Clean are still in business and going strong. If you are in need of someone to clean your carpet, Chad can be reached at 212-0630.

still dropping

County unemployment rates released Thursday by the state show the rate decreased in 86 counties, increased in four, and remained the same in five.
For the county we all know and love, that being Warren County, unemployment dropped from 8.1 percent to 7.7 percent. That’s a pretty good unemployment rate. The state and national unemployment rates are both 6.7 percent.
Tennessee’s best county in terms of unemployment is Williamson County with a rate of 4.6 percent. Scott County is the worst at 14.8 percent.

Regional news

I always like to provide a snapshot of regional job news so Friday’s announcement in Chattanooga caught my attention. Coca-Cola Bottling announced it will be bringing a $62 million distribution center which will create 43 new jobs to Chattanooga.
The distribution center will occupy the old Olan Mills site off Shepard Road near Highway 153.
Friday’s announcement followed months of speculation about whether Coca-Cola would choose Chattanooga or go out of state. Coke officials had remained tight-lipped about where the new distribution center would go.

That’s all folks

That’s all the business news I could dig up for today. I find it well worth the $1.25 price of admission. To report business news, give me a call at 473-2191.