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Bank of America adds 35 small biz bankers in Atlanta

Bank of America adds 35 small biz bankers in Atlanta

ATLANTA -- Bank of America Corp. reported Wednesday it hit its target of hiring more that 1,000 small business bankers in 2012, including 35 in Metro Atlanta.

The Charlotte, N.C.-based bank said it extended $280.2 million in credit to Georgia small businesses and $8.7 billion nationally last year. The $8.7 billion was an increase of 28 percent over 2011.

It recently reported net income of $2.8 billion for 2012. It also saw its head count shrink by about 5,000 employees to 267,190 in the fourth quarter, evidence that BofA is still trimming staff levels as it works to lower its expenses. Branches also continued to close, with BofA reporting 5,478 banking centers across its U.S. franchise at the end of the year, down from 5,702 centers a year earlier. 

Bank of America is the third-largest bank in metro Atlanta with 145 local branches and $20.4 billion in area deposits for a market share of 17 percent. 

Coweta-Fayette EMC rebranding

PALMETTO, Ga. -- Palmetto-based EMC Natural Gas Inc. changed its business name from Coweta-Fayette EMC Natural Gas to True Natural Gas.

The natural gas affiliate of Coweta-Fayette Electric Membership Corp. has been Sawnee EMC's gas partner since 2007.

"Coweta-Fayette EMC Natural Gas has grown considerably since its founding 10 years ago," said Dan Hart, president and CEO of True Natural Gas, in a statement. "As we have expanded, potential customers outside Coweta and Fayette have told us that our name led to confusion about whether they could even receive service from us. We have selected True Natural Gas as a name that addresses our statewide presence while better describing our commitment to customer satisfaction with clear and competitive pricing plans."

Nominees needed for Small Business of the Year

Nominees needed for Small Business of the Year

FAYETTE COUNTY, Ga. -- The deadline is Friday, Dec. 7 to nominate a local business for the Fayette Chamber of Commerce's Small Business of the Year honor.

Eligible businesses are current chamber members that have been in operation for at least three years, have fewer than 50 employees and have not won the award in the past three years.

Nominated businesses will receive applications from the chamber. They must be completed and returned no later than Dec. 28.

The winner will be announced at the Fayette Chamber Annual Meeting & Awards Luncheon on Friday, Jan. 18 at the Wyndham Peachtree Conference Center in Peachtree City.

Learn more and download a nomination form at fayettechamber.org.

LittlePINKBook.com holds 8th Annual Fall Empowerment event

LittlePINKBook.com holds 8th Annual Fall Empowerment event

LittlePINKBook.com, the digital platform for career women, hosted its 8th Annual Fall Empowerment Event on November 13. More than 300 professional women attended the luncheon event, at the Atlanta History Center, along with more than 550 unique viewers joining via live stream. Some viewers planned gatherings of 50 or more women and leveraged the event to enhance their own business and networking meetings in cities across the globe.

The executives on the panel candidly answered questions related to their career paths to the C-Suite. Glenda Umaña, anchor at CNN en Español, was the event’s moderator. Read LittlePINKBook.com’s “Top 10 Takeaways” for favorite thoughts shared by the three panelists:

·        Teri List-Stoll, SVP and Treasurer, Procter & Gamble

Dept. of Labor launches system to improve unemployment insurance

Dept. of Labor launches system to improve unemployment insurance

ATLANTA -- The Georgia Department of Labor recently rolled out a new electronic system designed to increase efficiency and reduce costs of operating the state's unemployment insurance program.

Georgia is one of 10 states to adopt the State Information Data Exchange (SIDES) E-response. It allows employers to respond promptly to the Department of Labor when a former worker files an unemployment claim, according to state Labor Commissioner Mark Butler.

"This new online capability is part of our continuing effort to make the Georgia Department of Labor more user-friendly and technologically up-to-date," Butler said in a statement. "This will significantly speed communications between the labor department and employers. At the same time, it will help prevent some overpayments to people who might not be eligible for benefits, saving us from having to go back and try to collect money from ineligible applicants."

Best Buy to close 2 metro Atlanta stores

ATLANTA -- Best Buy confirmed Saturday a list of 42 stores that will close by the end of 2012, including two stores in Georgia.

The area stores that will close are at 128 Pavilion Parkway, Fayetteville; and 4014 Atlanta Highway, Loganville.

Best Buy announced in March it would close 50 stores across the country and has already closed stores in Kansas City, Mo. and Scottsdale, Ariz., according to a statement released by the company.

Prior to Saturday, the company notified five stores in Minnesota and a San Antonio store they would close later this year.

The majority of stores will close by May 12, the company said.

Carter's Inc. brings 600 new jobs to Ga.

ATLANTA - Wednesday afternoon, Carter's Inc. announced the opening of a new distribution center in Jackson County, expected to create 600 new jobs by 2015.

The Atlanta-based children's clothing company will fill 250 of those positions by the end of the year.

Marketing vice-president Greg Foglesong says all 600 positions are full-time, and the company expects to hire "hundreds" more seasonal workers.

"We are eager for applicants and ready to get the new facility up and staffed quickly," Foglesong said.

The center will open in Braselton this June.

Founded in Atlanta, Carter's is looking to hire both management and hourly workers. Positions range from operations and engineering to human resources. Carter's will provide training for most workers through Georgia QuickStart.