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VOL. 43 | NO. 45 | Friday, November 8, 2019

Laffer Investments now part of ButcherJoseph

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Laffer Investments, Inc., an SEC registered investment adviser based in Nashville, has been acquired by ButcherJoseph Financial Holdings, LLC, an investment banking firm.

Offices of the firm will be in Charlotte, Nashville and Phoenix.

Laffer Investments was founded in 1999 by Arthur B. Laffer, Ph.D., and his son, Arthur B. Laffer Jr.

The Laffer firm provides investment management advice to individuals and portfolio management services to institutions totaling almost $600 million and will be renamed Laffer|Tengler Investments once all necessary filings are complete.

“Laffer Investments was a perfect fit to join the ButcherJoseph family of companies,” says Jon Curley CEO of ButcherJoseph. “We are particularly excited to have Dr. Laffer joining us and agreeing to chair our advisory board.”

Nancy Tengler, investment commentator, portfolio manager and author, who will be chief investment officer of the firm adds, “The investment professional depth and the broad product mix of the Laffer firm will enhance our ability to provide clients with investment advice and solutions to help them grow and preserve their wealth.

“I’ve known and respected the Laffer firm for years, making this such a natural combination. I am thrilled and excited about the future for our firm.”

Laffer|Tengler Investments will have six investment professionals with more than 200 combined years of investment industry experience among a total staff of 14.

“We are thrilled to partner with ButcherJoseph and Nancy Tengler,” says Arthur Laffer, Jr, President of Laffer Investments. “We are confident this combination will both benefit our existing clients and open doors to new opportunities for growth.”

Jon Curley will be CEO of the firm. Arthur B. Laffer, Jr. will remain with the firm as chief operating officer and portfolio manager.

HealthTrust announces purchasing pact

HealthTrust, headquartered in Nashville, has awarded a 36-month group purchasing agreement for EcoVue ultrasound gel to York, Pennsylvania-based HR Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

The new agreement allows HealthTrust members, at their discretion, to take advantage of special pricing and terms pre-negotiated by HealthTrust for ultrasound gel.

EcoVue was developed as an innovative ultrasound gel that aligns with your sustainable business initiatives. It was designed with not only the patient and physician in mind, but the environment and the role it plays in reducing a carbon footprint. EcoVue’s formula and packaging defines the future market and will change the industry’s view of ultrasound gel.

“With our revolutionary packaging and formula, our non-refillable multiuse and single use products will forever change your VUE of ultrasound gel,” says Jim Pilsner, HR Pharmaceuticals director of marketing.

Southeast Venture sells Eastside Heights

Nashville-based Southeast Venture has sold Eastside Heights, a mixed-use development on the corner of South Fifth and Woodland streets in East Nashville.

Known for the black and yellow “EAST” mural visible from Interstate 24, Eastside Heights is a 1.9-acre property with 249 one- and two-bedroom residential units and 8,000 square feet of commercial space, currently filled by Pedego Electric Bikes, F45 East Nashville and Surreal Blow Out Bar.

The buyer is an entity related to Steadfast Companies, a real estate investment management company that owns and/or operates a portfolio of real estate across the United States and Mexico.

Franklin, Green Hills make business Top 25 list

Franklin and Green Hills have been named among America’s Top 25 Best Neighborhoods for Small Businesses compiled by Welcomemat Services.

“Small Business Season is a chance for us to shine a light on local businesses and the communities that we live in,” says Brian Mattingly, CEO of Welcomemat Services. “For 16 years, Welcomemat has worked with local businesses, giving them access to technology and data-driven marketing tools to help them grow. We created Small Business Season four years ago to take this support to the next level and use data to showcase what neighborhoods were growing and thriving.”

Soddy Daisy in Hamilton County also made the list.

Tivity partners with Walmart Health

Nashville-based Tivity Health, a health improvement solutions company, is providing wellness resources in Walmart Health in Dallas, Georgia.

The state-of-the-art Walmart Health facility is designed to improve associate and community health by making health care more affordable and accessible, and by offering specialized community health resources, online education and in-center workshops to educate the community about preventive health and wellness.

Tivity Health will provide fitness classes and workshops for the community room, a designated space within the center for wellness and community activities.

“We are excited to be a part of Walmart Health and look forward to leveraging our deep expertise in fitness, nutrition, social connection and member engagement to create a healthier community,” says Donato Tramuto, CEO of Tivity Health. “We have a shared vision of improving wellness at the community and individual level by addressing key factors that contribute to poor health.’’

Lung cancer researchers release study results

Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center and Resolution Bioscience, Inc. lung cancer researchers have announced the first peer-reviewed scientific publication to track clinical response and resistance mechanisms to ensartinib using circulating tumor DNA.

The peer-reviewed manuscript, “Monitoring therapeutic response and resistance: analysis of circulating tumor DNA in patients with ALK+ lung cancer,” was released online ahead of print publication in the “Journal of Thoracic Oncology.’’

A team of scientists led by lung cancer researchers and clinicians at Vanderbilt-Ingram used the Resolution ctDx-Lung assay to identify actionable genomic alterations, as well as to monitor response and development of resistance to ensartinib, a second-generation ALK tyrosine kinase inhibitor.

“This is the first study to highlight treatment response and resistance mechanisms to ensartinib in patients who received this therapy,” says Leora Horn, M.D., MS, Ingram Associate Professor of Cancer Research at the center and first author of the publication.

“While further evaluation is required, these data suggest that longitudinal monitoring of genetic biomarkers that are associated with acquired resistance is feasible.”

“In the future, application of ctDNA technology could allow a physician to prescribe a more effective and personalized treatment to improve clinical outcomes before the cancer progresses,” says Christine M. Lovly, M.D., Ph.D., associate professor of medicine at Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center and senior author of the publication.

Community Health to sell 3 Virginia facilities

Franklin-based Community Health Systems, Inc. has announced that affiliates have signed a definitive agreement to sell three Virginia hospitals.

The facilities are the 300-bed Southside Regional Medical Center in Petersburg, 105-bed Southampton Memorial Hospital in Franklin and 80-bed Southern Virginia Regional Medical Center in Emporia, and their associated assets to subsidiaries of Bon Secours Mercy Health, Inc.

The transaction is expected to close by the end of 2019, subject to customary regulatory approvals and closing conditions.

Discovery Center to benefit from nutrition plan

Murfreesboro’s Discovery Center has been selected by the Del Monte Food Growing Great program to bring hands-on nutrition education to elementary and middle school children.

Del Monte is expanding its Growers of Good initiative which is focused on nurturing the Earth’s goodness.

Other partnerships include their recent collaboration with Kellogg’s World Food Day online food drive via Amazon to help local shelters and food banks to get the foods and products that they need.

GrowingGreat is a nonprofit organization based in Los Angeles.

Tennessee invests in child care

The state has announced new investments in child care that improve options for parents, incentivize employment in early childhood education, and help individuals open a licensed child care agency.

Tennessee has more than 4,000 regulated child care agencies including approximately 1,500 providers that are currently participating in the Child Care Certificate program.

The educators at TDHS licensed child care agencies will be eligible to apply for Tennessee’s Child Care WAGE$ program that provides an annual salary supplement, issued in two parts based on specific qualifications.

Tennessee is one of the first states in the country to implement the WAGE$ program with the long-term goal of promoting continuous professional development and retention of staff at child care provider agencies.

Under the program, an eligible educator with six credit hours in early childhood education will receive an extra $400 annually. The supplement rises with experience up to $5,200 a year for some educators with a master’s degree.

TDHS is also announcing investments to help improve existing child care. These investments include:

Minigrants of up to $4,000 ($5,000 in distressed counties) to help agencies improve quality, meet licensing requirements and obtain assistance growing capacity.

Free online tools to help with business management, human resources, and administration.

Access to bulk purchasing of supplies at discounted pricing and other shared services.

TransCore unveils toll-paying tech

TransCore, headquartered in Nashville, has announced a new product that allows RVers to travel across the U.S. using only one transponder to pay tolls electronically without stopping at a toll booth.

RV Toll Pass (www.rvtollpass.com) will change the way RVers travel through different tolling jurisdictions.

RV Toll Pass, with TransCore’s multiprotocol National Pass technology, is available for all RV configurations, including motor homes and trailers and allows users to be tolled at the electronic rate, which is typically lower than the cash or video toll rate.

With toll roads in 35 states, until now, RVers have had to navigate different tolling systems, buy multiple tolling transponders, or search for routes to avoid tolling altogether. With RV Toll Pass, drivers can bypass narrow cash lanes conveniently and safely without the worry of receiving unexpected toll charges or violations in the mail.

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