Clayton News-Star

Business Notes: Sept. 11

Zaxby’s helps grant wishes

Seventeen area Zaxby’s restaurants recently raised $103,978 for Make-A-Wish Eastern North Carolina. Among the participating restaurants were the Zaxby’s in Smithfield and Clayton.

The money will help grant wishes to children with life-threatening illnesses.

“We are truly overwhelmed by the incredible support we received from our guests during this campaign,” said Tom Little, who owns the Clayton Zaxby’s.

“Zaxby’s is a valued national partner who continues to demonstrate its dedication to Make-A-Wish,” said Kristen Mercer Johnson, president and chief executive of Make-A-Wish Eastern North Carolina. “We are fortunate and extremely grateful for the support of all of the owners and operators who serve our local communities.”

PGI makes bid for competitor

Nonwovens maker Polymer Group Inc., which has a plant in Benson, has made an offer to buy Fiberweb Plc., a London-based maker of nonwovens and geosynthetics, according to Textile World magazine.

Fiberweb’s board of directors has recommended that the company accept PGI’s offer.

PGI focuses primarily on producing nonwovens for the hygiene, wipes, medical and industrial markets. In the United States, Fiberweb has plants in Tennessee and Minnesota.

First Citizens acquiring Western N.C. bank

First Citizens Bank & Trust Co., the banking company that originated in Johnston County, has announced that it will acquire 1st Financial Services Corp., which provides commercial banking products and services through its subsidiary, Mountain 1st Bank and Trust Co.

The agreement provides for the merger of Hendersonville-based 1st Financial Services Corp. and Mountain 1st Bank into First Citizens Bank. The boards of all three companies have approved the merger.

Under the terms of the agreement, the U.S. Treasury will receive $8 million, which will allow 1st Financial Services Corp. to exit from the federal TARP program. Common shareholders of 1st Financial Services Corp. will receive $2 million.

“This agreement is a significant opportunity for us to expand our presence in our home state of North Carolina,” said Frank B. Holding Jr., chairman and chief executive of First Citizens. “We currently have a vibrant branch network and customer base throughout Western North Carolina, and we look forward to the prospects of building on this foundation in an important market for us.”

Bank reports loss

Four Oaks Fincorp, the holding company for Four Oaks Bank & Trust Co., has reported a second-quarter loss of $104,000. A year ago, second quarter earnings were $29,000.

For the six months ended June 30, the bank lost $27,000. A year ago, it made $581,000.

The bank has a branch in Clayton.

Free business seminars

The Small Business Center at Johnston Community College has scheduled the following free seminars. To register, call Shelley Gardner at 919-209-2591, email or visit

Government Contracting Basics – 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 17, in Room 1032 of the Workforce Development Center. Learn about government contracting, the registration process, small-business programs and certifications, and finding and bidding on opportunities.

337 Ways to Market for Greater Profits in Your Business – 1-4 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 19, in Room 1032 of the Workforce Development Center. Learn how to generate leads, increase customer transactions and improve bottom-line profits.

Small Business Management and Recordkeeping – 6-9 p.m. Monday, Sept. 23, in Room 1032 of the Workforce Development Center.

Networking 101 for the Small Business Owner – 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 25, in Room 1032 of the Workforce Development Center.

Financing Your Small Business – 6-9 p.m. Monday, Sept. 30, in Room 1032 of the Workforce Development Center. Learn from a lender what it takes to get funding for your business.

Business training

Johnston Community College has scheduled the following continuing education classes for business and industry professionals. For more information, call Rosa Andrews at 919-209-2015 or email To register, visit

Excel Level II – 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Friday, Sept. 20, in Room 1033 of the Workforce Development Center. Learn to enhance and refine a workbook. Also learn about charts, calculations, sorting and filtering. The cost is $71.

Excel Level III – 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Friday, Oct. 4, in Room 1033 of the Workforce Development Center. Learn advanced functions, PivotTables, worksheets, consolidating data, protecting data, analyzing data, macros and import and export options. The cost is $71.

MS Excel List Management – 9 a.m.-noon Wednesday, Sept. 11, in Room 1033 of the Workforce Development Center. Learn tips and tricks for sorting, filtering, subtotaling, printing and freezing large lists of data in Excel. The cost is $71.

MS PowerPoint Made Easy – 9 a.m.-noon Wednesday, Sept. 25, in Room 1033 of the Workforce Development Center. Learn to create a PowerPoint presentation. The cost is $71.

MS Word Columns, Tables and Merges – 9 a.m.-noon Wednesday, Nov. 6, in Room 1033 of the Workforce Development Center. Learn to master columns, tables and mail merges in Microsoft Word. The cost is $71.

MS Excel Calculations – 9 a.m.-noon Wednesday, Nov. 20, in Room 1033 of the Workforce Development Center. Learn to use common business calculations and troubleshoot results. The cost is $71.

Foundations in Entrepreneurship – 9 a.m.-noon Tuesdays, Oct.22-Dec.16, in Room 1033 of the Workforce Development Center. The course is designed for people who want to start a small business. Students will develop a business plan and learn basic planning principles. The course includes weekly face-to-face meetings from 9 a.m. to noon Tuesdays, plus online courses. Internet access and a reliable computer are required. The cost is $125.

Supervision 101: Essential Skills for Today’s Supervisor – 1-4 p.m. Mondays through Nov. 25, in Room 1032 of the Workforce Development Center. The course is divided into 10 topics, and students can choose which series to attend. Students who attend eight out of 10 topics will receive a Supervision 101 certificate. Topics include: putting your best foot forward at work; leadership skills; winning presentations; facilitating effective meetings; teambuilding techniques; today’s telecommuting workforce; blending intergenerational workers; motivation in the workplace; stress management in the workplace; and employee retention. The cost is $125.

Managing a Nonprofit Business – 1-5 p.m. Tuesdays, Oct.8-Nov. 12, in Room 1032 of the Workforce Development Center. Learn to start, manage or take part in a nonprofit business, agency or organization. The cost is $70.

Adobe InDesign – 2-5 p.m. Tuesdays through Nov. 5, in Room B128 of the Graphic Arts Center on the Smithfield campus, 245 College Road. The cost is $73.

Notary Public – The class is required for anyone wishing to apply through the N.C. Secretary of State’s Office to be commissioned. Students must be 18 or older and have a GED or high school diploma. The cost is $98. The following sessions will be held at the Cleveland Center: 6-9 p.m. Nov. 18-19 and 6-9 p.m. Sept. 23-24. The following sessions will take place at the Workforce Development Center: 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Friday, Oct. 11; 6-9 p.m. Oct.21-22; 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Friday, Nov. 8; and 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Friday, Dec. 6.