In The News
Central Florida Business Briefs - March 2005
EDGEWATER -- Brunswick Corp. bought North Carolina boat manufacturers SeaPro Boats and Sea Boss Boats and merged them with its Boston Whaler division to create Saltwater Boat Group, which is based in Edgewater.
GROVELAND -- Florida Select Citrus was taken over by creditors during Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings, and its facility was leased to Howie-In-The-Hills-based Silver Springs Citrus. Silver Springs Citrus is expanding and hiring some of the Groveland plant's employees. Transferring the operations from Groveland to Howie-In-The-Hills will take about two years. A downtown multiuse development project is planned for the 74-acre Groveland site.
HEATHROW -- Dixon Ticonderoga will be acquired by Italian competitor Fila-Fabbrica Italiana Lapis ed Affini for $23 million plus debt, which puts the value of the deal at about $60 million.
KISSIMMEE -- Tupperware Corp. (NYSE-TUP) plans to cut 250 manufacturing jobs at its Hemingway, S.C., plant as part of its ongoing shift of production work overseas. The move is expected to save the company $6 million annually but will cost about $9 million to implement.
LAKE MARY -- Kansas City, Mo.-based NovaStar Mortgage plans to open an operations center in Lake Mary that will employ about 170 within three years. Seminole County and Lake Mary each kicked in $51,000 in incentives, which qualifies the company for a state tax incentive package worth $500,000.
LEESBURG -- Alabama-based Colonial Bank is buying First Federal Savings Bank of Lake County in a cash/stock deal worth $232 million. The move would more than triple Colonial's branches in Lake County to 21 and give it additional branches in Sumter, Citrus and Marion counties.
ORLANDO -- Datamax Corp. was acquired by Dover Technologies, a subsidiary of New York-based Dover Corp. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Partners of CNL Ltd. sued the company in Texas, claiming the proposed $1.6-billion merger between CNL Restaurant Properties and Dallas-based U.S. Restaurant Properties is designed to bail out CNL's restaurant trust at the expense of more than 45,000 limited partners, who would be shorted at least $140 million.
Lockheed Martin's (NYSE-LMT) Orlando facility gained a $30-million Army contract to build simulation equipment for operating tanks and Humvees under the Army's 2005 Close Combat Tactical Trainer program.
DME Corp. was awarded a six-year contract with the U.S. Marine Corps to design and manufacture testing equipment for high-tech military electronics. The contract, potentially worth $138 million with options, calls for DME to deliver 100 new test systems and retrofit 200 others. DME is based in Fort Lauderdale, but the work will be done in its Orlando facility near the University of Central Florida.
Maitland-based 770 Uptown LLC paid $3.6 million for the 17,600-sq.-ft. downtown office building now being leased by Orange County Official Records. Principal Group LLC in Longwood sold the property, located near South Street and the East-West Expressway.
OSCEOLA COUNTY -- A Maitland investment group called Regional Development/192 LLC has bought 1,200 acres from the Seminole Tribe for $25 million. The tract, planned by the Seminoles to house a casino that was opposed by county officials, now contains provisions in its purchase agreement that it will be used for residential development.
Walt Disney World announced a service that allows guests of Disney hotels to check their luggage at their home airport and have it delivered straight to their hotel rooms. The service also includes bus transportation from Orlando International Airport to the Walt Disney World Resort. The service also lets departing guests check their luggage and get boarding passes at the hotel, and then go straight to the gate at the airport.
OVIEDO -- Ferdinand S. Duda retired as chief executive officer of A. Duda & Sons and turned the reins over to his brother, Joseph Duda. Ferdinand Duda will become chairman. Joseph Duda has been president of the family-owned agribusiness and development company since 2003.
SANFORD -- Orlando Sanford International Airport logged a record 1.83 million passengers last year, up 46% from the previous year.
WINTER PARK -- A group of investors from Orlando and Georgia is applying for a federal charter for First Callen National Bank of Florida, with a Winter Park opening planned for September. (Corrected, 03/22/2005)