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VOL. 42 | NO. 18 | Friday, May 4, 2018

Sarah Cannon launches new collaboration

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Sarah Cannon Development Innovations has announced a new strategic collaboration with Pivotal, a European contract research organization.

The partnership will expand access to novel immunotherapies in early phase clinical trials in Europe.

“The combined expertise in drug development and clinical research excellence of Pivotal and Sarah Cannon will enable us to accelerate research and provide access to novel investigational agents,” says Lourdes Huarte, vice president of regulatory and clinical operations at Pivotal. “We look forward to collaborating with these experts to impact the lives of people facing cancer throughout Europe.”

Sarah Cannon Development also provides comprehensive clinical development services and operational delivery of German-based Boehringer Ingelheim’s early stage development programs.

Franklin launches historic photo contest

The City of Franklin is celebrating Preservation Month with the My Historic Franklin Photo contest featuring hundreds of dollars in prizes, plus a chance to win goodies from Grays on Main, Kilwins, Tin Cottage, New Day Photography, The Williamson County Convention and Visitor’s Bureau and the Heritage Foundation of Williamson County.

The contest runs May 1-15 on the City of Franklin Instagram page @cityoffranklintn. Winning photos will be displayed at Tin Cottage and be shown at The Franklin Art Crawl. Awards will be given for best architecture photo, best landscape photo and peoples’ choice.

Enter by posting your photo to Instagram and include @cityoffranklintn and the hashtag #myhistoricfranklinphoto. Entrants must also follow the City of Franklin on Instagram @cityoffranklintn.

Photos must be posted between May 1 and May 15, 2018. The city will contact the winner through Instagram. Each entry must include an aspect of Franklin that features architecture and/or landscape. Photograph can be old or new. Information

Shorr Packaging expands in La Vergne

Shorr Packaging Corp., a national and independent packaging supplier, has announced the expansion and new location of their distribution and warehouse facility in La Vergne.

Positioned in Tech Park, the new 125,000-square-foot facility will provide Shorr over three times the amount of space it had previously.

The new location marks the sixth expansion for Shorr within a two-year span, not including the additions of other new buildings and building extensions, to accommodate for overflow.

“Shorr needed a larger facility to support our continued growth and to help operate more efficiently,” says Craig Funkhouser, chief executive officer. “We will continue to focus efforts on providing high service levels for all our customers. The larger facility will help us gain advantages within the region, which can be passed on to help provide better service to our national, multi-location customers.”

The new facility, which is 1.6 miles away from the previous location, is only 12 miles from downtown Nashville and will continue to service the same areas in Tennessee and Kentucky.

Moving forward with a sustainable green initiative, the new location has energy efficient T-5 lighting with built-in motion sensors through the entire warehouse and utilizes new, more efficient air conditioning units.

VisuWell adds new funding for expansion

VisuWell, a Nashville-based telemedicine enablement company, has completed a new round of undisclosed funding. VisuWell was formerly known as WeCounsel.

The new funding will be used for sales growth and market expansion of the company’s telemedicine platform.

An undisclosed amount was raised, led by insiders Longmeadow Capital and Point Judith Capital, among other participants.

Driven by rising costs and increasing demand, health care providers are experiencing a shift in how they are required to deliver care. These changes in the healthcare environment created a need for VisuWell’s virtual care platform, which is designed to optimize access and decrease the cost of care delivery.

Brookdale restructures Ventas agreement

Nashville-based Brookdale Senior Living plans to restructure its portfolio of 128 community leases from Ventas, Inc.

The agreements combine substantially all of the Ventas-leased communities into a single master lease and security agreement.

Lucinda Baier, Brookdale’s president and CEO, says “We are delighted to announce this news so early into our turnaround strategy. This agreement creates certainty in our long-term relationship with Ventas and moves us a step forward toward improving our financial position.

“The agreement allows us to improve our near-term cash flows, streamline our portfolio, improve our strategic flexibility, simplify our lease structure, and take advantage of the silver wave of a growing seniors’ population.

“We would like to thank the Ventas team for working collaboratively with us to create a win-win transaction for both companies.”

Eco-Energy extends contract with Pinal

Franklin-based Eco-Energy, a biofuel supply chain company, announces a three-year contractual extension with Pinal Energy – a 55 million gallon per year plant in Arizona.

“At Eco, our core focus is on our Alliance plant partners and value creation for each one,’’ says John Bowman, vice president of alliance marketing at Eco-Energy. We are excited that Pinal Energy has chosen us as their ethanol marketer for the next three years.

“Our team continues to look for every way to maximize Pinal’s position as Arizona’s only ethanol plant.’’

Eco-Energy has been Pinal Energy’s ethanol marketer since 2014. “Pinal Energy is excited to continue our team-focused effort along with Eco Energy to position its facility to supply our market with locally made energy and effective octane,” says Matt Rynearson, general manager Pinal Energy LLC.

Eco-Energy CEO Josh Bailey adds that, “We have developed a leading position in the Arizona market, which has allowed us to create measurable value for Pinal Energy.”

Along with marketing for Pinal, Eco-Energy has a terminal project underway in Phoenix. According to Bailey, “Eco continues to invest in the ethanol industry, creating efficiency and preparing for future growth. The Phoenix project along with others in development include inbound unit train capability and pipeline connectivity to local terminals, the most efficient design possible for incorporating ethanol into the fuel chain.”

Mobile Mentor to build facility in Nashville

Mobile Mentor, Inc. will locate its first U.S. facility in Nashville.

The mobile solutions company plans to create 110 new jobs and invest approximately $2 million in Davidson County.

Mobile Mentor plans on locating its new operations in an existing location in Nashville’s West End neighborhood. With this new location, the company will be better equipped to provide service to its North American customers.

Mobile Mentor, part of Mobile Mentor Limited, develops, secures and manages mobile solutions for health care, banks, airlines, utilities and government organizations and offers application development, mobile security and mobility management.

Mobile Mentor will initially focus solely on health care in Nashville.

“Mobile Mentor has chosen Nashville as the base for our U.S. business due to the proximity to the leading health care service providers,” says Denis O’Shea, Mobile Mentor CEO.

“We are delighted to be part of the thriving community of health care innovators and we look forward to working closely with the industry leaders.”

“These jobs will present great opportunities in Nashville’s expanding tech workforce for our residents,” Nashville Mayor David Briley says. “I’m excited to see Mobile Mentor investing in our great city.”

DevDigital helps launch Time Miner

Nashville-based DevDigital LLC has announced its client, Time Miner, has launched a mobile app designed for professionals who bill for their time and use their smartphones to talk and text with clients.

Prior to the launch of the DevDigital-built Time Miner app, the only way to keep up with billable time on a smartphone was to make real-time notes, scroll through phone records at billing time, or try to recall the calls and texts with clients from memory.

“We are excited to see Time Miner provide quantifiable value to busy professionals by using digital smartphone technology to remove inefficiency from the billing process. It is an honor to be the developers behind this app, says Peter Marcum, co-founder of DevDigital and Kernel Equity.

Time Miner also produces a report that sorts the data by client to include when the calls occurred, how long they lasted, and how much the call is worth, based on the professional’s hourly rate.

Cat Financial reports first-quarter revenue

Nashville-based Cat Financial reported first-quarter 2018 revenues of $690 million, an increase of $28 million, or 4 percent, compared with the first quarter of 2017.

First-quarter 2018 profit was $91 million, a $24 million, or 21 percent, decrease from the first quarter of 2017.

The increase in revenues was primarily due to a $19 million favorable impact from higher average earning assets and a $16 million favorable impact from higher average financing rates, partially offset by an $11 million unfavorable impact from lower lending activity with Caterpillar.

Profit before income taxes was $124 million for the first quarter of 2018, compared with $167 million for the first quarter of 2017. The decrease was primarily due to a $51 million increase in provision for credit losses, partially offset by a $16 million increase in net yield on average earning assets.

During the first quarter of 2018, retail new business volume was $2.54 billion, an increase of $202 million, or 9 percent, from the first quarter of 2017. The increase was driven by higher volume in Asia/Pacific, Mining, Europe and North America, partially offset by decreases in Caterpillar Power Finance and Latin America.

“Cat Financial’s core asset portfolio continues to perform well despite some remaining weakness in our Caterpillar Power Finance and Latin American portfolios,” says Dave Walton, president of Cat Financial and vice president with responsibility for the Financial Products Division of Caterpillar Inc. “The global Cat Financial team is focused on actively managing portfolio health and continuing to serve Caterpillar customers and Cat dealers worldwide through financial services solutions.”

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