Weekly Roundup: June 14-18

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Catch up on this week’s top business news here. For daily information, subscribe to our free newsletter, Gulfshore Business Daily, and find archived newsletters at GulfshoreBusiness.com.

 

Friday, June 18

SPIRIT AIRLINES TO START NONSTOP FORT MYERS-MANCHESTER SERVICE THIS FALL

Spirit Airlines has announced it will inaugurate nonstop service between Southwest Florida International Airport (RSW) in Fort Myers and Manchester-Boston Regional Airport (MHT) in New Hampshire on Nov. 17. Spirit Airlines will operate the RSW-MHT flight four times weekly.

 

Thursday, June 17

CORPORATE OWNER OF EDISON MALL IN FORT MYERS FILES FOR BANKRUPTCY PROTECTION

Washington Prime Group Inc. has filed voluntary petitions for relief under Chapter 11 of the United States Bankruptcy Code, the Columbus, Ohio-based company announced this week, blaming its indebtedness on challenges it faced from the COVID-19 pandemic. The company, a retail REIT that owns Edison Mall in Fort Myers and Port Charlotte Town Center as well as a portfolio of 100 other malls, enters Chapter 11 after executing a restructuring support agreement with creditors, led by investment firm SVPGlobal, that hold about 73% of the principal amount outstanding of the company’s secured corporate debt and 67% of the principal amount outstanding of the company’s unsecured notes. Washington Prime will utilize Chapter 11 to implement a comprehensive and consensual financial restructuring of its corporate-level debt that will allow it to substantially deleverage its balance sheet and strengthen its business and operations going forward, either through a full equitization of the company’s unsecured notes or an alternative value-maximizing transaction that would repay, in full in cash, all of its corporate-level debt, the company reports.

 

Wednesday, June 16

ALICO INC. ANNOUNCES INCREASE IN DIVIDEND, SALE OF MORE RANCH LAND

Fort Myers-based Alico Inc. on Monday announced significant activities that will continue to support its business strategy and generate greater returns for its shareholders. The Alico board of directors approved an increase in the quarterly dividend from $0.18 to $0.50 per common share, which represents an increase of about 178% effective the third quarter of fiscal year 2021. The company also announced the sale of about 12,500 additional acres of Alico Ranch this month. Alico sold about 11,700 acres encumbered by an easement for about $12.2 million. In addition, the company also sold 763 acres to two independent third parties for about $3.5 million.

 

Tuesday, June 15

Video courtesy of WINK News

TSA AGENTS NEEDED FOR SUMMER RUSH AT SOUTHWEST FLORIDA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT

The Transportation Security Administration is looking to fill more than 20 positions for agents at Southwest Florida International Airport. The need comes as the number of people using the airport has soared since 2019. If new agents aren’t hired, travelers could spend more time waiting in line at RSW, which is expected to be packed this summer. The airport, already up 28% over 2019 numbers, anticipates a 60% to 90% increase in passengers between June and August, WINK News reports. To apply for a TSA position, click here.

 

Monday, June 14

Video courtesy of WINK News

SOUTHWEST FLORIDA SET TO BREAK TOURISM RECORDS FROM 2019

Business in Southwest Florida is headed for a record-breaking year. Last month, tourism was up from the best year ever in 2019. From flights to hotels, people want to spend money in the region, boosting the local economy. Hotels are saying this year is like a never-ending season. People clearly want to be in Lee County and other parts of Southwest Florida, and the weather is one reason, but so is the fact that the Sunshine State didn’t shut down as long as other states did during the pandemic. In April, the Tourist Development Council in Lee County shows a 46% increase in bed tax collection compared to the record year of 2019. Southwest Florida International Airport expects to see a 60% to 90% increase in passengers between June and August, WINK News reports.

 

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