Things seen and overheard around the region last month, compiled by reporter Mike Lewis:
Nice ride in Spain
FREDERICK, Md. — Carey International Inc., which provides chauffeured service, customer-centric travel technology and ground transportation logistics management, has named a new franchise operation in Madrid, Spain.
The Carey Madrid banner was bestowed upon Blai Limousines, which will operate as a Carey-branded, independently owned franchise, Carey announced in a news release.
Founded in 1965, Blai Limousines began supplying premium ground transportation solutions in Barcelona, including chauffeured services for Catalan painter Salvador Dali, before expanding into additional service territories throughout Spain. Blai Limousines co-founders, Blai Matons, and his son, Oscar, opened a branch in Madrid in 2014.
Among other things, Carey features a world-class fleet of late-model executive and luxury vehicles, a corps of professional chauffeurs and a portfolio of specialized transportation logistics management services.
Survey: Logistics leaders optimistic about economy
The U.S. Logistics and Transportation industry is highly optimistic regarding the U.S. economy and their companies’ prospects over the next three months, according to the most recent quarterly survey by TCompanies.
• 74 percent are optimistic about the US economy over next three months (unchanged from the second quarter).
• 80 percent expect increased revenues, up from 75 percent in the previous quarter.
• 73 percent expect increased profitability, up from 67 percent.
By a 2-to-1 margin, those surveyed reported that workforce shortages remained a bigger obstacle to growth than trade tariffs.
The survey also notes that inflationary pressures remain, as 56 percent plan to increase prices in next quarter.
Giant adds more stores
CARLISLE, Pa. — Giant Food Stores recently announced that it has entered into an agreement with Supervalu Inc., a newly acquired subsidiary of United Natural Foods, to acquire five corporately-owned Shop ‘n Save locations.
Financial terms were not disclosed.
Giant plans to convert the stores into Martin’s Food Markets. The following stores are part of the sale.:
• 22401 Jefferson Boulevard, Smithsburg, Md.
• 500 North Antrim Way, Greencastle, Pa.
• 409 North McNeil Road, Berryville, Va.
• 147 Roaring Lion Drive, Hedgesville, W.Va.
• 1317 Old Courthouse Square, Martinsburg, W.Va.
The sale is expected to close during the first quarter of 2019, subject to customary closing conditions.
FCC to start PT assistant program
FREDERICK, Md. — Frederick Community College will develop a new physical therapist assistant associate degree program with the help of a $150,000 grant from the Maryland State Department of Education.
Grant funding will cover all startup costs for the new program, according to a news release from FCC.
The grant will enable FCC and Frederick County Public Schools, which received its own grant, to create a pathway for physical therapy education.
Applications will be accepted in fall 2019 with a cohort proposed to start in spring 2020. FCC will offer a spring and fall cohort each year.