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• The Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED) board, at its December meeting, approved a cash rebate of up to $450,000 for 3481 Inc. for its production of “Just Dancing,” a Valentine’s Day-themed film that will air on the Hallmark Channel. The company is expected to spend $1.8 million in Utah, including during principal photography set for March 3-20. The production is expected to employ 18 cast, 67 crew and 375 extras. The director has yet to be determined. The producer is David Wulf. The show will tell the story of a widow who takes up dance lessons and begins to fall in love with her instructor.
• Bank of Utah, Ogden, has announced changes in branch manager positions at three locations. Sarah Carver, Bountiful branch manager, will transfer the week of Dec. 30 to Layton to serve as branch manager there. She has held several positions at the bank including customer service representative and account manager. She succeeds Brenda Moore as Layton branch manager. Moore is retiring, effective Jan. 3, after 23 years in the banking industry, including two years as operation manager for Bank of Utah’s main branch in Ogden, 10 years as branch manager in Layton, and as a merchant teller and service manager for Wells Fargo. Karen Owens will move to Bank of Utah’s Bountiful branch to serve as branch manager. She started her career with the bank in Bountiful 2 1/2 years ago as a customer service representative after many years in retail management. Owens was promoted to account manager and transferred to the bank’s main branch in Ogden to expand her retail banking expertise. Samantha Johnson has moved to the Redwood Road bank branch to serve as branch manager. Johnson, who has an extensive retail banking background, has played an important role on Bank of Utah’s corporate branch administration team and helped roll out many new procedures, tools and resources.
• Goldenwest Credit Union, Ogden, has released information about its 2019 bonus dividend. The credit union expects its members to collectively earn more than $2 million Dec. 31 with the year-end earnings. The board of directors approved the dividend at its November meeting. Since 2004, the bonus dividend program has topped more than $15 million. Dividend earning amounts will vary by member based on the average daily balance in their individual accounts over the course of the year. The dividend is a one-time amount of 4.4 percent annual percentage yield (APY) paid above the stated monthly dividend of 0.1 percent APY. Members will earn 4.5 percent APY for December on primary shares, secondary shares, Christmas Club shares and IRA shares.
• Young Living, a Lehi-based essential oils company, has announced a partnership with the Golden Einkorn Farm in Sault, located in the French region of Provence. The farm produces the company’s einkorn grain and other einkorn products. The 600-acre, family-owned farm is run by longtime Young Living partner Jerome Reynard. While the Golden Einkorn Farm is a new partner farm for Young Living, it has longstanding connections to the company as part of the same farming co-op as other Young Living farms in the region.
• Talent Ready Utah is expanding the Utah Diesel Tech Pathway program to southern Utah in partnership with Dixie Technical College, Washington County School District and 10 local diesel companies. Students will participate in work-based learning that gives them hands-on experience in the diesel industry and opens the door for a career in the high-growth, high-wage profession.
• CircusTrix, a Provo-based owner, operator, and franchisor of active entertainment parks, has announced new parks under the Superfly name in Munich and Bielefeld, Germany. The Superfly brand now has 10 locations in Germany. Superfly parks are known for traditional trampolines, tumbling lanes, bounce runs with ninja obstacles, jump towers, air tracks, boulder walls, transparent wall trampolines and more. Founded in 2011, CircusTrix has more than 320 facilities worldwide.
• World Trade Center Utah is inviting companies to join it for a trade mission to Taipei on March 1-4 during the World Trade Centers Association’s Annual General Assembly. The event is the organization’s premier annual event, gathering more than 300 representatives among world trade centers and their member companies from all over the world. The event will focus on “Connecting Business to the Digital World,” aiming to facilitate industrial exchange and prepare businesses for the digital advantages and challenges. It also represents an opportunity to connect with local businesses in Taiwan and potential partners worldwide. WTC Utah and its hosts, WTC Taiwan, will provide opportunities for business-to-business meetings, company tours and conference events. Participating companies may qualify for grants from the U.S. or Taiwan government to offset travel costs. Details are available by contacting David Carlebach, vice president of international investment for World Trade Center Utah, at (435) 640-0724 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
• RET Ventures, a Park City-based early-stage venture fund primarily focused on real estate technology for the multifamily and single-family rental segments, has hired Christopher Yip as partner and managing director. Yip will lead new investments, help build the RET Ventures team, strengthen the firm’s investment processes, and continue to create value for portfolio companies and limited partners. He has more than 12 years of private equity and growth equity investing experience in technology-enabled services, including global private investment firm TPG.
• IFit, a connected fitness streaming platform, has completed a $200 million growth Equity investment led by Pamplona Capital Management. Available on NordicTrack treadmills, incline trainers, rowers, cycles and strength products, iFit is owned by Icon Health & Fitness, the Logan-based parent company of NordicTrack, ProForm and Freemotion. Bank of America Merrill Lynch served as exclusive financial advisor to ICON. Barclays served as financial advisor to Pamplona.
• Tower Arch Capital, a Salt Lake City-based lower-middle market private equity firm, has announced it has recapitalized Creedence Energy Services LLC in partnership with its founders, Kevin, Wyatt and Malachi Black. Financial terms were not disclosed. Founded in 2014 and headquartered in Minot, North Dakota, with operations in Williston, North Dakota, and Odessa, Texas, Creedence provides production chemicals, acidizing services and other custom solutions for scale and corrosion prevention to oil and gas providers in the Bakken and Permian basins. Financing for the transaction was provided by KeyBank. Advisors for Tower Arch Capital included Dorsey & Whitney LLP and RSM US LLP. Advisors for Creedence Energy Services included PPHB Securities LP and Crowley Fleck PLLP.
• Screenmobile, a California-based company focused on screen doors, windows, porches and screen repair, has announced a giveback campaign called “Home Fur the Howlidays” to fundraise for the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA). The brand is doing the campaign in all of the markets that the brand has locations in, which includes Salt Lake City. Through Dec. 20, people can submit photos through https://woobox.com/ap2d4u of their pets in holiday costumes or enjoying winter activities. For every submission, Screenmobile will donate $1 to the ASPCA. If there are more than 500 submissions, Screenmobile will donate an extra $1,000 to the nonprofit.
• Davis and Weber counties are among five communities nationwide to be named 2020 Great American Defense Communities by the Association of Defense Communities (ADC). The Great American Defense Communities program, now in its fifth year, recognizes military communities and regions that help improve the quality of life for service members and military families. Communities are chosen through a competitive nomination process based on community and integration programs, educational and employment opportunities, and family support initiatives. This year’s selected communities will be honored throughout the year, including a visit from ADC’s leadership and special recognition at the Defense Communities National Summit in Washington, D.C., in June.
• Several Utah companies are in the Glassdoor Employees’ Choice Award listings, recognizing them as the Best Places to Work in 2020. The awards are based solely on the input of employees, who elect to provide feedback on their jobs, work environments and companies on the Glassdoor job and recruiting site. In the large-company category are No. 47 CHG Healthcare, No. 67 Dell Technologies, No. 78 E*Trade Financial, No. 85 C.R. England, No. 88 Fidelity Investments, No. 89 SkyWest Airlines and No. 90 Extra Space Storage. In the small- and medium-sized company category are No. 20 Weave, No. 35 A-Lign, No. 45 Lendio and No. 48 Health Catalyst.
• The Forbes M+A Group, a Colorado-based middle market transaction advisory firm, has hired James Morgan as a managing director. Morgan will support the firm in its Salt Lake City office. Morgan has more than 18 years of experience working with global investment banks. Most recently, he spent 11 years with HBSC Securities in New York, where he focused on selling businesses, raising capital and cross-border transactions. Formerly, Morgan practiced as an M&A advisor for Citigroup and Scotia Capital.
• The Utah Golf Course Superintendents Association, along with Utah State University, have produced a “Utah Golf Course Industry Best Management Practices Guide.” The practices were developed in part by using the BMP Planning Guide and Template created by the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA) and funded and supported by the USGA. The Utah association received a $10,000 BMP grant that GCSAA funded through the association’s Environmental Institute for Golf (EIFG) in part by PGA Tour. The BMP grant program provides funding through the EIFG to chapters for developing new guides, updating existing guides or for verification programs. GCSAA’s goal is to have all 50 states offer established BMPs by 2020. The BMPs provide guidance in 12 key areas — including archaeological awareness, wildlife protection, surface water management and water quality, nutrient use, integrated pest management, energy and others — that speak to the state’s six climate zones and unique flora and fauna. With more than 75 courses in the state covering a wide variety of climates, the Utah BMPs offers guidelines for superintendents to manage their facilities in an efficient and environmentally sustainable manner in keeping with their regional needs and regulatory concerns.
• Workfront, a Lehi-based work management application platform company, has announced that Maria Alvarez has joined its board of directors. Alvarez has more than 20 years of experience building products and teams in software development, security, internet and artificial intelligence (AI). She currently is general manager of shared engineering services in the AI+Research division at Microsoft, she leads the global team providing tools, services and programs that support Bing, Microsoft News, Ads, Consumer Applications and Microsoft Research. She previously was chief technology officer and product head of Panda Security and the engineering vice president and tech PMO of Yahoo Technology. She also held positions at HP, Symantec Corp. and CoCreate Software.
• Xant, a Provo-based company formerly known as InsideSales.com, will host its first customer conference, NEXT 2020, Feb. 25-28 in Salt Lake City. The event will bring together the company’s network of customers, partners and industry thought leaders to discuss the challenges facing revenue teams, reveal best practices by winning sales teams, and how to ultimately accelerate revenue in today's transformational environment. Details are at https://www.xant.ai/next2020/.