CBL suspends common, preferred dividends

The board of directors for CBL Properties, which owns and operates Hanes Mall and Friendly Center in the Triad, said Monday it is suspending future dividends for its common stock and two preferred stocks, likely through the end of 2020.

“Suspending dividends is a significant and difficult decision, one that was carefully considered by management and the board,” said Stephen Lebovitz, CBL’s chief executive.

“However, preserving free cash flow is a paramount objective for CBL at this time. We anticipate a decline in net operating income in 2020 as a result of heightened retailer bankruptcies, restructurings and store closings in 2019.”

The decision comes as the company has struggled to keep its share price above $1 in recent months. The share price closed Monday down 7 cents to $1.36.

CBL reported a $44.1 million loss in the third quarter, compared with 2018’s $12.6 million.

On Nov. 1, the CBL board of directors said it had entered into a corporate-governance agreement with Exeter Capital Investors LP and affiliates, which is its third largest investor at 5.97% of CBL’s common stock. The CBL board appointed two Exeter nominees to the now-nine member board.

Richard Craver

Italian flat-glass maker plans Reidsville facility

An Italian maker of flat glass and natural and synthetic stone products said Monday it will create its North American headquarters in Reidsville by early 2020.

Bovone recently bought the former Harley Davidson dealership facility on Barnes Street.

The company said it will renovate the space to accommodate commercial offices, a spare-parts warehouse and a mechanical workshop.

“The building is 13,380 square feet, but since they don’t qualify for incentives, we do not know their exact investment or jobs figures,” said Leigh Cockram, director of the Rockingham County Center for Economic Development, Small Business & Tourism.

“I suspect, however, based on our conversations, they will hire around five and make a total investment of under $1 million with purchase and upfit.”

Bovone said it chose the Reidsville site to be in proximity to Salem Distributing Co. in Winston-Salem, as well as to be close to the home-furnishings industry that is a prominent buyer of flat glass

Bovone was founded in 1954 and is based in Ovada, Italy, in the Piedmont region of northern Italy.

Bovone’s product lines are structured in two main areas: the product line consisting of standalone machines, for grinding, bevelling and washing of glass and stone; and the product line dedicated to complete plants for the silvering (coating) and layering of glass.

Richard Craver

Summit Credit Union acquires Lincoln National

Summit Credit Union, based in Greensboro, said Monday it has acquired Lincoln National Federal Credit Union, also of Greensboro. The transaction closed Sunday.

Lincoln National was chartered in 1935, has more than 900 members, and assets of more than $13 million. It serves employees of Lincoln Financial Group.

Summit provides services to employees at more than 250 companies throughout North Carolina. It has more than 36,000 members and assets of $260 million.

Richard Craver

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