Regional Report Western May 2012
History is paid
A Denver-based private-equity firm agreed to buy the Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa, a 99-year-old Asheville landmark, for an undisclosed sum in a deal expected to close this month. KSL Capital Partners LLC will spend $25 million to renovate the 512-room resort, which includes a Donald Ross-designed golf course and 55,000 square feet of meeting space, as part its centennial next year. Dallas-based Sammons Enterprises Inc. has owned the inn — built by E.W. Grove, maker of Grove’s Tasteless Chill Tonic, and his son-in-law — for 60 years. William Jennings Bryan spoke at its opening, and the resort has hosted such luminaries as Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, F. Scott Fitzgerald and 10 presidents, including Barack Obama in 2010. Its first convention was a reunion of Confederate Veterans of North Carolina in 1922.
"I’m getting too many visitors."
— Wade Shepherd, 83, owner of the abandoned mill village in Hildebran where part of The Hunger Games was filmed, explaining why he has put the 72 acres on the market for $1.4 million. The site was one of several around the state the production used last summer.
SPINDALE — Call-center provider Ameridial will invest $2.1 million here over three years, adding 195 jobs to its 37. The North Canton, Ohio-based company provides services for large and midsize companies in the health-care industry.
CANTON — The U.S. Department of Agriculture awarded Sunburst Trout Farm a $300,000 grant that will enable the company to buy more trout from local fish farms and purchase software to improve ordering efficiency. The farm raises rainbow trout and processes ready-to-cook and -eat products for online and in-store sales.
BOONE — Appalachian State University will open the Transportation Insight Center for Entrepreneurship this fall. The 1,700-square-foot center will include incubator space for student businesses.