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VOL. 42 | NO. 4 | Friday, January 26, 2018

CapStack buys Nashville properties

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CapStack Partners has acquired three Nashville properties with 475 units. The acquisition includes The Vistas, a 205-unit property, Fawnwood Apartments, a 158-unit property, and Archwood Meadows, a 112-unit property.

CapStack is an alternatives-focused investment bank and investment advisor.

This is the first transaction that CapStack has executed within the scope of the investment mandate to acquire value-add and multifamily assets across the Southeast, directly, and with partners.

CapStack partnered with MACC Venture Partners, a Southeast-focused multifamily operator, to complete this transaction.

“This acquisition directly aligns with our investment parameters,” says David Blatt, CEO of CapStack.

“Each property is exceptionally well-located, has a stable operating history and offers a significant value-add opportunity. We intend to reposition the portfolio into high-quality workforce housing to capitalize on the strong demand for this type of product in Nashville.”

VU plans Center for Sports, Society

Vanderbilt University Chancellor Nicholas S. Zeppos has announced plans for a new academic center to explore the intersection of sports, race, gender and culture in society.

The Center for Sports and Society will support research, teaching and scholarship in conjunction with the university’s focus on trans-institutional initiatives, including an initial emphasis on activism.

Zeppos made the announcement at an event held at the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C., part of Vanderbilt’s commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the integration of the Southeastern Conference and Vanderbilt’s varsity athletics by Vanderbilt alumni Perry Wallace and Godfrey Dillard.

“Few activities capture popular attention like sports, where our society’s greatest successes and deepest failures play out. Perry’s and Godfrey’s stories underscore this, and truly showcase the role that universities – for better and for worse – play in the fight for equality.

“At Vanderbilt, we’ve come a long way in nurturing our increasingly diverse and vibrant community,” Zeppos said at the event.

“But like our nation, we still have a long way to go. Universities have a critical role and mandate to study, to chronicle, and to shine a light on the great issues of our day,” he said.

Leadership Franklin seeks 2018-19 applicants

Applications are now being accepted for the 23rd class of Leadership Franklin. Applications may be downloaded at www.leadershipfranklin.org and must be completed by May 11.

Participants are chosen each year based on commitment to the community, previous participation in community, civic, or professional organizations, and demonstrated leadership in current or previous positions.

Leadership Franklin is a non-profit community leadership organization dedicated to educating, informing and empowering leaders to improve the quality of life in Franklin and Williamson County. Participants meet once per month for nine months, for a series of classes aimed at presenting and analyzing a particularly important segment of the community. Classes focus on the areas of history, government, business, law enforcement, media, education and quality of life. The class begins with an opening day and retreat in August.

Questions regarding the application process may be directed to Paula Harris, executive director (615 491-6536, paula.harris@bargedesign.com) or Debbie Henry, associate director (615 628-0264, dhenry@tmagroup.org).

Puerto Rico, US states get Country Rising aid

Several charitable organizations in multiple states and Puerto Rico are benefiting from grants provided by the Country Rising Fund at The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee.

The Country Rising Fund was established to support charitable initiatives helping victims of the September hurricanes: Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, Jose and Maria in Puerto Rico and in Louisiana, Florida and Texas. The Fund also has assisted victims of the mass shooting in Las Vegas.

Some of music’s biggest stars united for Country Rising, a sold-out benefit concert at Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena November 12, 2017 that raised more than $4 million.

Hosted by DJ Bobby Bones, Country Rising presented by Hilton and Dollar General featured performances by Jason Aldean, Dierks Bentley, Sam Hunt, Lady Antebellum, Little Big Town, Martina McBride, Reba McEntire, Chris Stapleton, George Strait, Keith Urban and Jon Pardi. Also, Garth Brooks appeared live from Spokane, Washington, where he donated proceeds from two of his previously scheduled shows to the Fund.

TNECD adds international team for France, Spain

The Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development has announced the addition of two international representatives for Spain and France who will focus on attracting new foreign direct investment to Tennessee.

TNECD has named Lorenzo Vignal and Sergio Fribolle to serve as the new directors of business development for France and Spain. As Tennessee’s primary representatives in France and Spain, Vignal and Fribolle will be the main contacts for Spanish and French companies exploring new operations in the U.S.

Based in Paris and Lyon, France, Fribolle has dual Spanish-French citizenship. As the international business development manager at Salveo Group, Fribolle has deep trade and investment experience in the French and Spanish markets. He is a graduate of the Institute of Business Administration in Bordeaux and hold a master’s of international commerce from ECEMA Business School in Lyon.

Vignal previously served as Mexico’s ambassador to Sweden, Poland, Latvia, Lithuania and Ukraine, as well as diplomatic advisor to Mexican President Vicente Fox. Vignal graduated from the College of Mexico with a focus in international relations. He later acquired a master’s degree in public policies and administration under the joint aegis of Mexico’s top five higher education institutions.

ACT Senior Retake Day touted as success

Nearly 52,000 Tennessee students participated in the second ACT Senior Retake Day.

Education Commissioner Candice McQueen announced the total which is 74.7 percent of the state’s high school class of 2018.

The number is double the number of seniors who chose to participate in the first ACT Senior Retake Day.

Of those seniors who retook the ACT in October, about 40 percent – or almost 19,000 – increased their overall score, and 2,333 seniors raised their composite to a 21 or higher, making them eligible for HOPE Scholarship funds that provide up to $16,000 to help students pay for college in Tennessee, as well as potentially additional grant support.

The 2017 ACT retake also resulted in more students hitting the ACT college-readiness benchmarks in each of the four tested subject areas: math, English, science, and reading.

College-readiness allows students to enroll directly into credit-bearing postsecondary coursework, avoiding remedial classes.

More allegations filed in MNAA suit

Lawyers representing Robert Wigington, former president and CEO of the Metropolitan Nashville Airport Authority in a wrongful termination, retaliation and breach of contract suit, have updated allegations against his former employer.

Wigington initially filed suit against MNAA in December, alleging the Airport Authority discriminated and retaliated against him in violation of the federal Family Medical Leave Act and the Tennessee Disability Act by refusing to allow him to resume his job duties and responsibilities when he returned to work after recovering from liver transplant surgery.

The amended complaint adds new information about actions MNAA took on December 13, nine days after the initial complaint was filed, including the Airport Authority’s decision to classify Wigington’s termination as a “for cause” termination – effectively eliminating the severance package included in his employment contract.

The complaint also names Bobby Joslin and A. Dexter Samuels, the chair and vice chair of MNAA’s board of commissioners, respectively as defendants. Joslin and Samuels are members of the Airport Authority’s management committee.

The Authority granted Wigington leave for his liver cancer surgery under the FMLA in late July. When he returned to work on September 5, he was told the Authority had decided to go in a “different direction” and that he was no longer a part of MNAA’s leadership team. At the time, officials of the Authority did not provide Wigington any explanation for his termination.

Silicon Ranch partners with Shell on solar

Nashville’s Silicon Ranch Corporation, developer, owner, and operator of solar energy plants and founded by former Gov. Phil Bredesen, has signed an agreement to make Shell its largest shareholder.

As part of the agreement, Shell will acquire a 43.83 percent interest in Silicon Ranch from Partners Group, the global private markets investment manager, for up to $217 million in cash based on Silicon Ranch performance, with the possibility to increase its position after 2021.

“We were impressed by Silicon Ranch’s proven track record, its market-led development strategy, and its long-term ownership model and commitment to the communities it serves,” says Marc van Gerven, Shell vice president of Solar. “Partnering with Silicon Ranch progresses our New Energies strategy and provides our U.S. customers with additional solar renewable options.

“With this entry into the fast-growing solar sector, Shell is able to leverage its expertise as one of the top three wholesale power sellers in the U.S., while expanding its global New Energies footprint.”

Captive insurance firms hit milestone

Tennessee’s domestic captive insurance companies exceeded $1 billion in written premiums in 2017 for the first time.

In addition to setting a new benchmark in premiums, the Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance approved 52 new Risk-Bearing Entities in 2017, including licensing another captive insurance company that relocated to the state from outside of the United States

Tennessee’s new captives are comprised of nine “pure” captives – an insurance company with one owner – four protected cell captives, and 39 cell companies.

To date, companies have moved to Tennessee from Bermuda, Delaware, Montana, Nevada, South Carolina, South Dakota, Vermont, and Cayman, St. Kitts and Nevis in the Caribbean. At the end of 2017, the state had 591 RBEs representing a 9 percent increase over the number of RBEs in 2016. Four years ago, Tennessee only had two captive insurance companies.

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