A look back at the key local business happenings:
The likelihood of a Dec. 31 shutdown of a Berkeley County plant increased after owner Century Aluminum and Santee Cooper failed to agree on a new power contract for the 600-worker smelter. The stalemate intensified after the state-owned utility’s board voted 10-0 to reject the company’s proposal to buy all of its power from an out-of-state supplier. Santee Cooper offered instead to renew the existing agreement for three years without raising rates. Century has been buying 75 percent of its electricity from an out-of-state provider since 2012. Santee Cooper provides the remaining 25 percent.
S.C. taxpayers will need to pay at least $114 million for the state’s share of damage caused by October’s flooding, which has a price tag topping $1 billion, Gov. Nikki Haley.
Haley also said there have been $181 million in insurance claims to private companies, and the federal government plans on paying about $500 million. Add in the estimated $375 million in damage to agriculture, and the total bill comes to around $1.2 billion.
Big containerships are making their way to the Port of Charleston more frequently than in the past, even months before the Panama Canal’s expansion next spring is expected to kick off a big-vessel boom along the East Coast. Officials said vessels carrying 5,000 to 10,000 20-foot-long cargo boxes made up 52 percent of the total number of calls at the port in fiscal 2015, which ended June 30.
University of South Carolina economists are predicting broad-based growth in most industries across the state next year, along with increases in employment and income levels. “The economy appears to be firing on all cylinders.” said Joey Von Nessen of the USC Moore School of Business. Job creation is expected to grow by 2.9 percent.
Boeing Co. said it finished nearly two weeks early the detailed engineering and design work for its 787-10, the newest and longest Dreamliner. The plane will be built exclusively in North Charleston. Assembly of the first “Dash 10” will be completed next year and the first delivery set for 2018.
A Fort Lauderdale airline is leaving Charleston International after less than nine months. Silver Airways will pull out in early January, citing weak bookings. The airline started serving Charleston in March with nonstop service to Orlando and Tampa on 34-seat turboprop planes.
The owner of CresCom Bank said it is selling about $25 million of its common stock to help fund growth. Charleston-based Carolina Financial Corp. notified federal regulators about the start of the offering Nov. 30. The company plans to use the proceeds “to support organic and acquisitive growth” and for general corporate purposes.