Skip to main content

Charleston Business

#YeahTHATAgenda: Unemployment, mortgage delinquency rates up in South Carolina, Greenville's Best and Brightest, New Air Cargo at GSP, Clemson's NASA Star, The Midlands Real Estate Forecast is Coming

Sep 11, 2019 12:30PM ● By Chris Haire
Unemployment, mortgage delinquency rates up slightly across South Carolina: Following reports of a broader economic slowdown and several significant stock dips, figures from the latest Richmond Federal Reserve report may further indicate the economic is cooling.

According to the Fed, unemployment is up year over year across the state at 0.1%, a figure that is reflected in each of the major metros, from Charleston to Columbia, Greenville to Spartanburg.

Nationally, unemployment is down 0.2% to 3.7%.

Meanwhile, mortgage delinquencies are up in the Palmetto State from Q2 2018 's 1.19% to Q2 2019's 1.28%. Across the nation, delinquencies are actually down from Q2 2018's 1.25% to Q2 2019's 1.05%.

In housing, new permits are split year over year, with a drop of -9.71% in Charleston and -4.55% in Columbia and increases in Greenville (+12.84%) and Spartanburg (+44.22%).

In key economic sectors, payroll employment was almost universally up in South Carolina, except for the information and construction industries, where 1,200 and 2,800 jobs were lost, respectively. --Chris Haire


$33 Million:  The price tag on the newly opened air cargo facility at Greenville-Spartanburg International Airport (GSP). The 110,000 square-foot cargo facility and its 17-acre apron allow the airport to accommodate up to three Boeing 747-800 freighter aircraft simultaneously; tripling the airport’s previous handling capacity. Senator International, a German-based freight forwarder, will lease half of the facility to support its Senator Atlantic Bridge (SAB) flights from GSP to Frankfurt-Hahn (HHN) with twice-weekly connecting service to Johannesburg, South Africa. (GSP)


The Brave & the Brightest: A salute to the young superheroes of the business world | Chris Haire

One of the more interesting parts of growing older—at least for me—is watching how the cocksure attitude of younger days has slowly given way to the humility of experience. 

 That’s not to say that I don’t still remain supremely confident in my abilities. I mean, I can turn a phrase or crack a joke with the best of them, whether it’s Rolling Stone political commentator Matt Taibbi or pop-culture priest Chuck Klosterman.

Or at least I imagine I can. At least most of the time. 

All literary boasts aside, I’ll be the first to admit that at least one of the central beliefs that have guided me from childhood through adulthood has been discarded. As much as it pains me to admit, gone are the days when I would go about my daily routine knowing that given the proper tools, weightlifting routine and ninja training—yes, ninja training—I could become Batman. Not overnight, mind you, but, oh I don’t know, six weeks, maybe seven. But yeah, Batman. Me. Like easily. 

These days I would never think anything so far-fetched and clearly out of the realm of my expertise, which, for reasons that are neither good nor bad, is primarily centered around the ability to speed read, Google this and that, and know when to use a comma and when to use a mighty M-dash. 

I know, I know, you’re jealous. After all, not everybody can juggle three social media accounts at a time while writing a newsletter report about barbecue restaurants and editing a piece on international trade. And I’ve got to say, your envy, well, it humbles me. I’m truly grateful and honored and, well, I’m kinda feeling like if a school of ninjas took me in—right here, right now—I could easily become Batman.

Or at least Robin.

And if not Robin, then, I don’t know, Bat-Mite or Dynomutt or Hong Kong Phooey. You know, somebody who can take down seven bad guys with just one blow—or the use of a well-placed M-dash. Either way is fine.

All joking aside, I’m not Batman and I’ll never be Batman. In fact, I’m quite happy being the editor of this magazine and living right here in the beautiful Palmetto State. 

If you could’ve asked my childhood self if he’d be cool with that, I’m sure he’d be rather pleased. I’ve always loved to read and write and direct people to new things to learn about and old things to reconsider. So, to me, ending up in a career has been a big win, even if I didn’t get to be Batman.

There’s always next year, I suppose. 

Speaking of dream jobs and superheroes, this month we’re honoring the Upstate’s Best & Brightest 35 and Under. And I must say that looking at this year’s crop of Best & Brightest honorees, I’m not only jealous, I’m seriously considering abandoning my pursuit of becoming Batman and instead trying to be more like them. 

Some of them are already business leaders. Some will soon be. Either way they are the future of the Upstate. And they’re all worthy of our applause.

To see who made Greenville Business Magazine's 2019 Best & Brightest 35 and Under, click here. Enjoy. --Chris Haire


United Community Banks Inc. is ready to establish itself in the Midlands (Columbia Business Monthly)

Will Bass Pro ever build Spartanburg County mega store? (GoUpstate)

North Charleston textile maker AstenJohnson, German firm Heimbach Group call off merger (Post & Courier)

Mauldin to announce developer, plan for new look city center within 1 month, mayor says (Greenville News)

Steven Brown’s DIG is bringing STEM to rural communities (Greenville Business Magazine)

A hotel, restaurants and apartments could become the new front door to Rock Hill (The Herald)

'A work in progress’: How Myrtle Beach is cleaning up downtown area (Myrtle Beach Online)

6-story apartment building planned for Assembly Street (The State)

Francis Marion University prepares year-long celebration for its 50th Anniversary

Rotties 221 Biergarten set to open in Woodruff (GoUpstate)

Acclaimed chef Sarah Simmons bringing Il Focolare pizza parlor to Cottontown (The State)

Clemson Eye among the first to implant new trifocal lens to patients undergoing cataract surgery (Index Journal)

Greenville entrepreneur Joe Erwin: The creative, the visionary and why he cooks (Greenville News)

The Sweetery partnering with Anderson County hemp business to create CBD edibles (Independant-Mail)

Smoke BBQ has closed its King Street location, citing rising rent (Charleston City Paper)

Menu items, options increasing for Spartanburg County’s vegetarians, vegans (GoUpstate)
0.5%: The percentage of South Carolinians without health insurance dropped 0.5% from 2017 to 2018, according to the most recent Census data. Despite falling, the Palmetto State's uninsured rate remains at 10.5%, above the national rate of 8.9%.
Hires & Honors

Clemson University College of Science professor emeritus Miguel Larsen received NASA’s Distinguished Public Service Medal on Aug. 28.The medal is the highest honor the space agency bestows to non-government personnel. Larsen is being recognized for his “pioneering research to measure vertical profiles of the Earth’s upper atmospheric winds and leading over 100 NASA sounding rockets during 40 years of research.” Image Credit: NASA/Patrick Black (Clemson Newsstand)

Brian Walsh, a Realtor® with more than a decade of experience, has joined the team of agents at William Means Real Estate, one of the oldest real estate companies in Charleston and an exclusive affiliate of Christie’s International Real Estate. He enjoys assisting buyers interested in downtown Charleston’s historic district, Mount Pleasant, Isle of Palms, and Sullivan’s Island.(Williams Means Real Estate)

McGregor & Company, LLP is pleased to announce that Dustin Scott, CPA, EA has earned the Certified Valuation Analyst (CVA) designation from the National Association of Certified Valuators and Analysts (NACVA). NACVA is a professional association that supports the business valuation, litigation support and fraud deterrence consulting disciplines within the CPA, legal and other professional communities. (McGregor & Company)

Rebuild Upstate has brought on Ashley Weekly as its new office coordinator. After spending four years as the lead teller at SunTrust Bank, Weekly served for two years as the finance assistant at Davidson County Schools. Now, Weekly and her family have moved from their small hometown in North Carolina to the Upstate.





On Thursday, September 26, 2019, the Building Industry Association of Central South Carolina, Columbia Chamber of Commerce, Central Carolina REALTORS® Association (CCRA) and Mortgage Lenders Association of Greater Columbia will host a Midlands Real Estate Forecast conference at the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center, 1101 Lincoln St., Columbia. This event will take place from 8:30-11:30AM.

This year’s guest speaker is Robert Dietz, Ph.D., chief economist for the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB). Dietz focuses on housing market analysis, forecasting and industry surveys, and housing policy research. 

In addition, Mark Vitner, managing director and senior economist at Wells Fargo Securities, LLC, will be speaking. Vitner’s job responsibility is tracking U.S. and regional economic trends. 

Please register at (Columbia Chamber)

Music & Arts, one of the nation’s largest musical instrument retailers and lesson providers, has expanded its services in South Carolina with the opening of a new location in Greenville. In addition to a lessons program, the new store offers rentals, sales and repairs for an assortment of band and orchestral instruments plus piano, guitar, drums and more. Music & Arts Greenville is located at 1025 Woodruff Rd. Suite 104 in Greenville. (Music & Arts)

UniComm Media Group (UMG), a full service, advertising agency with Hispanic marketing capabilities based in Greenville was selected as Corley Plumbing Air Electric's agency-of-record. UMG will lead advertising, digital, media buying and design strategies for Corley, a professional plumbing, heating and cooling, drain and electric services serving the Upstate since 1986. (UMB)



Charleston Commercial has brokered a deal on King Street. In July, C. Kendrick and managing director Joshua Schaap facilitated the sale of 231 King St. for $4.15 million. 

The buyer is Blatteis & Schnur Inc., a Los Angeles-based national real estate brokerage organization. The building is home to women’s clothing retailer Lori+Lulu, which will continue to occupy the first floor. The second floor is occupied by local businesses, including a law office and studio for artist Janet Gregg. 

Over the last 18 months, Charleston Commercial has overseen the sale of 10 King Street properties, totaling $78.1 million. (Charleston Commercial)




Hispanic Heritage Month Opening Night
Sept 12, 6-9 PM
Fluor Field

Join the Hispanic Alliance at the 500 Club at Fluor Field for a lively networking social. Guests will enjoy a live Latin jazz band while sipping Latin and Spanish wines, and enjoying tapas by Chef Wilbert Saucedo of West End Events. 

This year, the Alliance will also recognize the proprietors of four thriving businesses in the Upstate: Vachy Meraz of Vachy's Creations Enterprise; Andres Camargo and Rocio Salazar of Unlocked Coffee Roasters; Ricardo Parra of La Esperanza & Los Portales; and Danny and Jennifer Morales of CocoBowlz. 

A donation of $25 is suggested for each attendee. To register, go here.