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30 people to watch in Birmingham business for 2018
It's a new year in Birmingham, and this one is shaping up to be a pivotal year for the Magic City's business world.
projects that opened in 2017 should start paying huge dividends. New leaders in place at the city level will have some huge decisions to make. And businesses, riding a wave of confidence, should continue pursuing growth and expansions.
With that in mind, the Birmingham Business Journal presents its 30 People to Watch in 2018.
This list is a mix of influential executives, new leaders and individuals who will face critical decisions or key moments in the new year.
Downtown Selma will get a high-tech upgrade thanks to a $75,000 grant, the Delta Regional Authority and the United States Economic Development Administration announced Friday.
The grant will be used to create a free high-speed Wi-Fi network that will stretch over 10 blocks.
The grant is part of a program known as the Selma Innovation District Initiative, which is broken down into three phases: phase one will provide a reliable network while phases two and three both aim to utilize the network to intertwine businesses, help residents, promote tourism and provide safety.
Rep. Terri Sewell said in a statement that a reliable internet connection is a necessity in modern society.
New Flyer of America Inc.has announced that its Anniston, Alabama facility has successfully completed its first full build of an Xcelsior CHARGE zero-emission, battery-electric, heavy-duty transit bus.
The Anniston facility now joins all other New Flyer locations with capability to manufacture the Xcelsior CHARGE battery-electric bus, including Winnipeg, Manitoba, and Crookston and St. Cloud, Minnesota.
New Flyer's Anniston facility is also home to the Vehicle Innovation Center, opened in October 2017 and dedicated to advancing bus and coach technology, specifically in electric and autonomous propulsions. It is the first and only innovation lab of its kind in North America.
Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama produced more than 328,000 vehicles last year.
It was the
second year of declining numbers for the Montgomery plant, but understandable as the company experienced a 12 percent drop in North American sales, and a 5 percent dip in retail sales. This was due to high demand in the North American market for SUVs, while the plant produces sedans in higher numbers.
Still, plant officials feel they are positioned well to meet the SUV market with the Santa Fe Sport, which saw higher production numbers this year.