Archive for September 2012

Holiday Inn construction begins, and other hotel info

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In case you missed it today’s Daily Journal, we had a photo of the latest working going on at the twin-hote site at the intersection of North Gloster Street and McCullough Boulevard in Tupelo.

As a refresher, Fusion Hospitality, owned by Bruce Patel, once had a Howard Johnson there. It’s come down, and in its place will be a 79 all-suites Candlewood Suites, as well as a 121-room Holiday Inn & Suites.

The framework is all but complete on the Candlewood, and framing on the Holiday Inn has begun, as seen in this photo, with the Holiday in the foreground and its sister property in the background.

Patel said the Candlewood should be ready within six months, with the Holiday Inn taking another 11 months.

Also in about six months, about the time the Candlewood will be finished, construction will begin on a 54-room Howard Johnson on the other end of McCullough, near the Love’s Travel Center. The motel will include four extended-stay rooms.

Written by Dennis Seid

September 28, 2012 at 5:01 pm

Posted in Business news

Cheapest gas: Pontotoc 9/28/12

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Pontotoc has the cheapest gas today in Northeast Mississippi, according to a Daily Journal survey of gas stations.

image via istock

You can find a gallon of regular gas in Pontotoc for $3.38 today.

Most expensive: Starkville $3.65

Reminder: This survey is designed to find the cheapest gas. The cities with the “most expensive” title are the ones that came in at the bottom of our cheapest gas list. There are other stations with more expensive gas, but we aren’t hunting for that. We’re looking for the station where you are going to spend the most money when you want to find cheap gas. Make sense?

More prices:

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Written by Carlie Kollath Wells

September 28, 2012 at 1:11 pm

Look who is opening in old Circuit City buildings

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This story from (full text) shifted our thoughts about tenants in empty buildings:

The former Circuit City building in Tupelo is now home to Furniture Center. (photo by Djournal’s Carlie Kollath Wells)

Vacant Circuit City Stores Inc. locations, Home Depot Inc. parking lots and excess space in Sears Holdings Corp. stores are finding new life as restaurants in a sign of how the sluggish economy is reshaping the commercial landscape.

Darden Restaurants Inc. has been opening Olive Gardens in closed supermarkets, Circuit City stores and motels, and placing its LongHorn Steakhouses in erstwhile Blockbuster Inc. outlets and Borders Group Inc. bookstores.

Buffalo Wild Wings Inc. has been taking over space in Sears stores and on the parking lots of big-box retailers with excess land.

It’s a strange thought for us – Olive Garden in a former Circuit City building. What do you think?

Update from Biz Buzz reader Joseph Newell: As of Sunday, a temporary Halloween store is now in Furniture Center. That’s right – we have two popup stores in Tupelo now (previous coverage).

Written by Carlie Kollath Wells

September 28, 2012 at 10:28 am

First 50 Sephora customers get gift

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Biz Buzz been telling you for quite some time about Sephora‘s opening Oct. 5 inside JC Penney at The Mall at Barnes Crossing.

Well, it is indeed opening, and if you’re one of the first 50 in line, you get a special gift.

Here’s what the PR firm says:

Beauty seekers in the Tupelo  area have reason to celebrate. Sephora, the ultimate beauty destination and jcpenney, one of America’s leading retailers, are opening a location in the jcpenney department store at the Mall At Barnes Crossing on Friday, October 5th. And what’s even more beautiful? The first 50 clients to show upat the grand opening will dip into our stash of Sephora gift cards with mystery values worth up to $100! Plus, Sephora is giving away 750 giveaway bags stuffed with fabulous samples!

Each 1,700-square-foot Sephora inside jcpenney location, situated prominently in the center of the store, is a beauty paradise with close to 50 brands. Hard to find favorites will include cult makeup lines such as Urban Decay, Make Up For Ever, NARS, Sephora by OPI, and Smashbox; innovative skincare lines including Philosophy, Murad, Peter Thomas Roth and Ole Henriksen, as well as fragrance offerings from brands such as Dior, Gucci, Marc Jacobs and Dolce and Gabbana. Plus,Sephora has its own collection of makeup, tools & accessories, and a skincare collection featuring the exclusive plant-derived ingredient HydroSenn in a line of products to cleanse, treat, moisturize and protect.
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Written by Dennis Seid

September 27, 2012 at 1:39 pm

Posted in Business news

Analyst bullish on Cooper Tire, says buy stock

with 62 comments, a stock market news and analysis website, likes what it sees in Cooper Tire.

The company, which employs more than 1,000 people at its Tupelo manufacturing plant, is seeing sales rise and costs decrease, a combination any business would want.

Here’s a blurb from the story:

Cooper Tire & Rubber (CTB) is the 4th largest tire manufacturer in the U.S., and the 9th largest in the world. It provides passenger, winter, specialty, and light and commercial truck tires, and operates in the replacement tire market with a 13 percent market share. 70 percent of its sales come from North America, and the rest from international operations. We recommend buying CTB because the company is taking the right measures to deal with expirations of tariffs on Chinese tire imports. Moreover, sales have been increasing, and the company is making strategic investments, while also paying a respectable dividend (2 percent dividend yield).


Written by Dennis Seid

September 27, 2012 at 1:18 pm

Posted in Business news

Unemployment drops in Northeast Mississippi

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In case you missed this story in today’s Daily Journal, the employment picture got a little better in August.

Here are the highlights:

The unemployment rate for Northeast Mississippi dropped two percentage points in August, to 8.9 percent.

That matched the lowest rate for the year, posted by the 16-county region in April and May.

August’s jobless rate ended two straight months of double-digit unemployment in the region that followed five straight months of rates under 10 percent.

In Northeast Mississippi, peak joblessness hit 13 percent in January 2010, but the region endured 35 straight months of double-digit unemployment from April 2010 until January this year.

In August, 11 of the region’s 16 counties had unemployment under 10 percent. Leading the way were Lafayette (6.5), Pontotoc (7.4), Union (7.5) and Itawamba (7.8). Northeast Mississippi’s largest county, Lee, was at 8.1 percent, the lowest August rate in four years.

Written by Dennis Seid

September 27, 2012 at 12:38 pm

Posted in Business news

Inspections: Romie’s Grocery, Cafe 212, Grill 9/27/12

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Nice bunch of inspections this week. Click here to read last week’s inspections.

image via MSDH

The state Department of Health regularly inspects restaurants and food facilities.

The facilities are graded from A to C. “A” is the best. “C” is the equivalent of failing, but the inspection isn’t bad enough to merit the closure of the restaurant.

The following Lee County facilities were inspected between Sept. 20 and today.

The facilities are listed as they are in the MSDH system, even if there are typos.

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Written by Carlie Kollath Wells

September 27, 2012 at 11:51 am