Business In Brief - June 27, 2007

Citizens South Bank breaks ground in Rock Hill

Citizens South Bank broke ground in Rock Hill last week on its first full-service office in South Carolina.

The 4,300 square-foot office building at the corner of Ebinport Road and India Hook Road is expected to open late this year. The bank will employ 12 people, including commercial and home lending officers as well as a full consumer banking staff.

Citizens South operates a loan production office at 1348 Ebenezer Road, Suite 101. It is staffed by Senior Vice President Kyle Curtis, a commercial banker, and two home lending bankers.

Based in Gastonia, N.C., Citizens South operates 14 full-service banking offices in the Central Piedmont area of North Carolina.

Comporium promotes two to vice president

Comporium has announced the promotions of Ron Dyson and Frank Marshall as part of a consolidation of its Lancaster-area Network Services and Operations with Rock Hill and Fort Mill groups.

Dyson, director of network services, has been named vice president of network services. He will be responsible for network personnel in Rock Hill, Fort Mill and Lancaster who operate equipment and systems that provide core services.

Dyson attended N.C. State University before joining Comporium in 1968. He became electronic automatic exchange supervisor in 1974, the network services superintendent in 1978 and network services manager in 1995. He was named director of network services in 2004.

Marshall, business services manager for Fort Mill, has been named vice president sales and residential services. He will oversee residential services groups in Rock Hill, Fort Mill and Lancaster and all outside residential sales functions. The company's home integration and Realtor relations teams will continue to report to Marshall.

Marshall graduated from Winthrop University in 1992 with a degree in business administration. He joined Comporium Telecom in 1993 as a key system technician. He also has worked as a special services technician and electronic specialist.

Rock Hill woman opens photography studio

Erika Thornburg has opened Erika's Photography at 2210 India Hook Road, Suite 105, at the corner of India Hook and Ebinport Road.

The studio offers custom portraits such a maternity, babies, children, adults, families and church directories as well as wedding photography. Thornburg also does corporate photography including business portraits.

Hours are by appointment only to allow for two-hour sessions.

Sessions can be scheduled by e-mailing or calling the studio at 554-4490. For more information, visit

SCBT to join economic development initiative

South Carolina Bank and Trust of the Piedmont announced that it is participating in an economic development initiative with Catawba Regional Development Corp.

South Carolina Bank and Trust of the Piedmont provided a $250,000 below-market-interest-rate loan to CRDC's Community Development Financial Institutions Program. The funds will be loaned to new and growing businesses in York, Lancaster, Chester and Union counties.

The CRDC is an affiliate of the Catawba Regional Council of Governments and fosters economic development by providing gap financing to small businesses.

South Carolina Bank and Trust of the Piedmont, a wholly owned subsidiary of SCBT Financial Corp., has its headquarters in Rock Hill and six offices in York and Lancaster counties. For more information, visit

Consumer confidence declines in June

NEW YORK -- Consumer confidence slid in June as Americans began to worry that high gas prices and a slumping housing industry may be undermining the health of the job market.

The New York-based Conference Board said Tuesday that its Consumer Confidence Index, which is meant to measure how good shoppers feel about the economy and employment, fell to the lowest level in almost a year.

At the same time, the Commerce Department said that new home sales dropped in May for the fourth time in the past five months.

Both pieces of the economic puzzle dropped into a market that is already concerned about inflation, interest rates and economic growth ahead of a two-day meeting of the Federal Reserve that begins today. The Fed is expected to keep interest rates steady at 5.25 percent, but investors are watching for clues about future moves.

AT&T says iPhone service plans will start at $59.99

CUPERTINO, Calif. -- AT&T's service plans for the Apple iPhone will cost $59.99 to $99.99 a month, the companies said Tuesday.

The monthly fee is on top of the phone's price -- $499 for a model with 4 gigabytes of storage and $599 for one with 8 gigabytes. The phone is slated to go on sale at 6 p.m. local time Friday at Apple and AT&T stores as well as Apple's Web site.

Apple claims the iPhone -- which combines the functions of a cell phone, iPod media player and Web-surfing device -- will be easier to use than other smart phones because of its unique touch-screen display and intuitive software that allows for easy access to voice mail messages, the Internet, and video and music libraries. AT&T is the gadget's exclusive carrier.

The $59.99 monthly plan includes 450 minutes of voice time; a $79.99 plan includes 900 minutes; and a $99.99 plan includes 1,350 minutes.