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Business

coastal surge

savan
J. Scott Trubey/AJC

Savannah enjoying post-recession boom

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SAVANNAH — Power chords from a rock band covering Led Zeppelin tunes stream out of City Market at Ellis Square while children dance in the cool spray of a fountain.

Cyclists pedal down Broughton Street past a row of brick storefronts where stores like H&M will mingle with other major chains and Savannah-borne boutiques. It’s an April Sunday, and Savannah’s historic district is brimming with life.

Tourism in Georgia’s oldest city has surged in recent years — with 2014 hotel room tax revenue up 17 percent over the prior year, according to Armstrong State University — and developers see gold: They plan about $1 billion in new hotel and retail projects, city boosters say.

new name in town

Qatar Airways
GETTY IMAGES

Qatar Airways plans Atlanta flights

Qatar Airways announced plans to launch a new route from Doha to Atlanta starting in July 2016 as part of an expansion of its service to the United States.

› SIGN UP FOR AJC ATLANTA AIR TRAVEL NEWSLETTER!

The announcement comes as Atlanta-based Delta Air Lines and other major U.S. carriers are involved in a spat with Qatar Airways and other Gulf carriers.

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mixed signals

house
Kent D. Johnson

Metro Atlanta housing: A rebound, not a re-boom

The metro Atlanta housing market may be far short of shifting into high gear, but it has picked up speed, fueled by new building and new buyers during the spring season.

Yet experts continue to fret about how much recession residue the market is still dragging. They worry that in the aftermath of the housing bust, people still are reluctant or unable to move, which holds down the supply of homes for sale and skews the market.

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secrets of success

sherwood
Matt Kempner/AJC

A life of booms and busts leads to one more try

Jeff Sherwood trained as a zoologist, worked with NASA and launched a string of unrelated businesses. They ranged from selling performance parts for cars to providing video duplication services and producing scented sticks that make flower bouquets and Christmas trees more fragrant.

By 27 he was rich enough to retire. A few years later he was bust.

pain prevention

baxter

Atlanta doc’s invention eases ‘needle phobia’

Dr. Amy Baxter started thinking anew about the problem of pain when her son Max, then 4, had what she calls a “horrible’’ experience getting a group of four shots. He was hurting a lot, and it showed.

“I was embarrassed and angry,’’ Baxter recalls. “He became afraid of doctors.“

Baxter, a pediatric emergency physician and a pain researcher, later had a moment of discovery while driving home one day.

disappearing image

mural
Jason Getz/ AJC

Airport ‘Spirit’ mural gives way to digital screen

Love it or hate it, the mural of children playing in the Centennial Olympic Park fountains is no longer greeting fliers riding up the main terminal escalator at the world’s busiest airport.

The “Spirit of Atlanta” mural has been covered by an ad for Porsche, touting Atlanta as the home of Porsche Cars North America.

The smiling girl with outstretched arms and the other kids are still underneath the ad for Porsche, which recently moved its offices to a site near Hartsfield-Jackson International.


corporate ladder

downtown

NEWSMAKERS

People moving up and around in the metro Atlanta business community:

Larson-Juhl has named Chris Massa as vice president, North American sales.

Private Bank of Buckhead & Decatur has added Regine Francois as a vice president and mortgage banker in its PrivatePlus Mortgage division.

David Shope, a 25-year veteran in the commercial real estate industry in Atlanta, has rejoined Cousins Properties.

making connections

arris
Matt Kempner/AJC

Forsyth firm nabs big chunk of in-home digital boom

Our home connections to the things we adore – TV and the online world – have turned into a messy digital Spaghetti Junction, with smart phones, tablets, high-def TVs, game consoles and more vying for airspace to get us more content faster.

Unnoticed by many, an equipment maker in Forsyth County has moved into the center of that hubbub, becoming one of the nation’s biggest providers of set-top TV boxes and other hardware that collects and sorts our in-home connections.

ajc exclusive

forward

Atlanta Forward 2015: A special business report

Five years after the recession, metro Atlanta faces big economic challenges. This yearlong AJC examination includes:

> An overview of our region's weaknesses and strengths, and reports on how Dallas-Fort Worth and Charlotte have forged faster recoveries.

> A talk with two CEOs whose companies moved to metro Atlanta , and a project to revive one of Atlanta's oldest neighborhoods.

> A look at "inflection points" that can determine if a metro area thrives or struggles, with reports from  Chicago  and St. Louis .

Browse the full ATLANTA FORWARD 2015 REPORT, including interactive graphics and videos, here .


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