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VOL. 43 | NO. 13 | Friday, March 29, 2019

Churchill Mortgage announces new company

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Brentwood-based Churchill Mortgage has announced a partnership with American Home Title to found a new firm, Churchill Title Solutions.

The joint venture was formed to streamline the origination process and create a secure mortgage experience for borrowers, real estate agents and lenders.

Churchill Mortgage provides conventional, FHA, VA and USDA residential mortgages in 46 states.

Available to all lenders in every U.S. state, Churchill Title Solutions will provide borrowers the option of pursuing a digital mortgage, streamlining (or entirely eliminating) some tedious processes associated with traditional title management, while expediting lenders’ time to close. In addition, the joint venture will close potential security gaps within the mortgage process and help lenders and real estate agents provide borrowers with peace of mind that their information is safe and secure.

State unemployment hits new low at 3.2%

The Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development has announced the statewide unemployment rate dropped to a new historic low in February.

The seasonally adjusted rate of 3.2 percent is 0.1 lower than the previous historic low.

Tennessee reached its previous record-low unemployment rate of 3.3 percent in October 2018 and it remained at the level for four consecutive months. The state began tracking unemployment rates in 1976.

Over the past year, Tennessee’s February unemployment rate decreased from 3.6 percent of 3.2 percent.

While Tennessee did see record-breaking unemployment in February, there was a decrease in the number of jobs across the state. Total nonfarm employment was down by 1,500 jobs between January and February. The state experienced the biggest decreases in the mining/logging/construction sector, followed by the professional/business services sector.

In a year to year comparison, Tennessee employers created an estimated 53,000 new jobs. The sector with the largest increase was leisure and hospitality, followed by trade/transportation/utilities and manufacturing.

The national unemployment rate also decreased in February. The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for the United States is 3.8 percent, down 0.2 from January.

Belmont, Lipscomb build Honduran pharmacy

Belmont University and Lipscomb University Colleges of Pharmacy are partnering with Jovenes en Camino to build and support a locally run pharmacy in El Zamorano, Honduras.

A Nashville-based nonprofit, Jovenes en Camino is a boys’ home and clinic in Honduras that doesn’t have access to the essential services provided by a pharmacy. Students and faculty from Belmont and Lipscomb are teaming to provide a creative solution to that challenge.

This partnership will allow students and faculty from both pharmacy programs to travel to Honduras throughout the year to provide services to local residents, beginning as soon as summer 2019. Interprofessional teams will include students in pharmacy, nursing, nutrition, physician assistants and other health-related disciplines, and interuniversity teams, composed of faculty and students from both institutions.

Beyond pharmaceutical care, this interprofessional partnership will also include additional health care providers as nursing, medical and other health-related programs will accompany pharmacists for travel.

The facility will also serve as a home-base for mission teams that will be in country multiple times a year that is readily equipped for patient consultation, exams and other services. Beyond the volunteer support that comes with this announcement, both universities have committed to providing financial support. Construction is anticipated to begin in the next two weeks.

Pinnacle named No. 2 best workplace in group

Pinnacle Financial Partners has risen in the ranks to be the No. 2 best financial services firm to work for in the entire country, according to a Fortune magazine’s list of Great Place to Work. Pinnacle was No. 3 on the same list last year.

This ranking is based on anonymous survey feedback from among 726,000 people working in the industry. Surveys examined more than 60 elements of their job experience, including the extent to which they trust their leaders, the respect with which people are treated, fairness in workplace decisions and camaraderie amongst the team.

In addition to its own big win, a company partially owned by Pinnacle also earned accolades. Bankers Healthcare Group ranked No. 2 on the list of small and medium companies. Bankers Healthcare Group is a financial services firm for the health care industry with more than 400 employees headquartered in Florida.

Change Healthcare publishes market survey

Nashville-based Change Healthcare and the HealthCare Executive Group has released its ninth annual Industry Pulse Survey report, a study designed to provide executives with timely insights on opportunities, challenges and trends in the healthcare market.

The study found fully one-third of health care executives surveyed, the largest single block, say non-healthcare market entrants could upend industry business models.

In addition, Social Determinants of Health initiatives are disrupting healthcare delivery and reimbursement, with a significant number of respondents planning to offer programs addressing care coordination, transportation, food insecurity, and other factors for members over the next 12 months.

Additional findings show nearly 40 percent of respondents said a market in which the majority of value-based relationships include both upside and downside shared-risk remains three to five years off – a concerning finding that might indicate payers and providers continue to struggle in their efforts to scale complex, value-based care and reimbursement models from pilot to production.

Manheim Nashville achieves accolades

Manheim Nashville, an auto auction company in Mt. Juliet, was named Midwest region winner for top performance by Westlake Financial Services.

America’s Auto Auction Harrisburg in Pennsylvania was the 2018 Auction of the Year overall winner.

Each year Westlake grades auto auctions based on sales and service levels including sales of Westlake remarketed units with the highest MMR percentage. Westlake recognizes top performing auctions in each region with the highest graded auction receiving the ‘Auction of the Year’ award.

Westlake partners with auctions nationwide to sell thousands of used cars each month.

ONE Group adds restaurant to The Gulch

STK Nashville, Tennessee’s first restaurant from ONE Group Hospitality Inc., is open in The Gulch.

The new, company-owned restaurant at 700 12th Avenue South, is under the culinary direction of Executive Chef Eli Jackson.

The design of STK Nashville reflects the trendy and hip Gulch neighborhood with classic white brick wall accents interlaced with glass and steel framing. At 9,057 square-feet, the restaurant includes a spacious, raised dining room, bistro and outdoor seating areas, a bar and a mezzanine overlooking the main dining area with seating for approximately 160 guests.

Gen Cap America sells Avanti Products

Gen Cap America, Inc., a Nashville-based private equity firm focused on lower middle market buyouts, has sold Avanti Products, LLC, to The Legacy Companies.

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Avanti Products is a designer and distributor of compact consumer appliances, specializing in refrigerators, wine and beer coolers, microwaves, gas and electric ranges, water dispensers, laundry machines and other compact appliances.

“Avanti has been providing quality products at a great value for 45 years,” says Richard Ladd, CEO of Avanti. “Our partnership with Gen Cap provided us with the resources and support needed to build on our strong foundation and expand both our product line and our customer base. We truly valued our partnership with Gen Cap, and we believe their support was a strong contributor to our growth over the last six years.”

Matt Lane, managing director at Gen Cap America, adds, “In the lower middle market, success is as much about partnering with exceptional teams as it is about finding great companies. Richard Ladd and the team at Avanti is a perfect example – they were the cornerstone of Avanti’s achievements during our investment. We are confident they will continue their track record of success going forward.”

Tennessee backs Robocall Abuse Act

The Tennessee Public Utility Commission has endorsed federal legislation designed to reduce the number of telemarketing calls received by households and businesses nationwide.

The Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence Act, also known as “TRACED” – was introduced in the United States Senate this year to address the expanding wave of unsolicited telemarketing calls known as “spoofing.”

Spoofing is the act of using technology to disguise the origin of an unknown source for the purpose defrauding and swindling its targets. The practice of spoofing has impacted the enforcement of the Tennessee and others states’ Do Not Call programs.

The TRACED Act gives phone service providers 12 to 18 months from enactment to establish and implement a call authentication framework, in addition to other provisions to help target unlawful companies that spoof.

Ardent’s interest in hospital sold

Nashville-based Ardent Health Services and Ascension’s Sacred Heart Health System have completed the sale of Ardent’s interest in Bay Medical Sacred Heart to Ascension.

The transaction includes the hospital and related physician clinic operations in Panama City and Bay County, Florida. Terms of the sale were not disclosed.

Bay Medical was jointly owned by Ardent and Sacred Heart, which is part of Ascension, one of the nation’s leading nonprofit and Catholic health systems.

In Florida, Ascension locations now include four Sacred Heart Health System hospitals – Bay Medical in Panama City plus hospitals in Pensacola, Miramar Beach and Port St. Joe – as well as the hospitals of St. Vincent’s HealthCare in Northeast Florida.

Ardent Health Services’ subsidiaries own and operate 30 hospitals in six states with more than 25,000 employees including 1,150 employed providers.

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