Out of 26 million Texans, you may have an idea to change the world. You may have had several ideas to change the world. But only a tiny minority of you pushed through the U.S. Patent office from application to successful patent. We've seen Texans change the world many times over. Jack Kilby did it with Texas Instruments in 1958 with the integrated circuit, causing the start of the digital revolution, which, in part, is why you can read these words over your electronic device.
Over the last few years, Texas Business has brought its feature: Texas Business Patent of the Day. This list is of the ones that were either extremely clever, odd or strange. One thing becomes apparent from these patents and the patent that runs daily in Texas Business—Texans have a unique mind set.
Though the history of the Corn Dog is disputed, the State Fair of Texas claims to have introduced the Corny Dog sometime between 1938 and 1942. As a paean to that invention that now sits in the freezer section of every grocery store in the southwest, here are the fried foods the State Fair of Texas has introduced, or tried to introduce, in the last seven years.
Don't get caught up with John Wayne religion. For one thing, he's not Texan. He's in some fine movies involving Texas, most notably The Searchers, but none of his movies can make the best cut of Texas movies. Here's the short list.
Unsung Texas Business Journalists Mention that one is a reporter, and there's a spark of interest. Mention that one is a business news reporter, and watch the eyes glaze over. Except to the players, business and economic journalists are unappreciated. While many wish to become sports reporters when they grow up, most do not realize that business journalists cover the Real Game. Mention that reporter covers business, and watch the eyes glaze over. A toast to these below on the short list and the numerous unnamed ones slogging away. Full Story » TexasBusiness.com
Best Texas Mexican Food: The Short List No, we're not going to debate the difference between Tex-Mex, Mex-Tex, Mexican and Texican food. Just know these establishments are the pinnacle of Texas Mexican fare. No brag, just fact. Full Story » TexasBusiness.com
Best Texas Burgers Texas Burgers. . While a hamburger is merely sustenance and gratification for a meal, the memory a good Texas burger can give rise to Homeric odes. The short list. Full Story » TexasBusiness.com
Texas Business reports: FORT WORTH, TEXAS and MIAMI, FLORIDA—American Airlines and Farelogix reached a seven-year agreement in which Farelogix will continue providing enhancements and support for American's direct connect, a system which enables the sale of American's fares and other products by travel agencies.
Texas Business reports: SUNNYVALE, Calif. and AUSTIN, Texas—AMD closed its transaction with 7171 Southwest Parkway Holdings LP to sell and lease-back the company’s “Lone Star Campus” located at 7171 Southwest Parkway in Austin, Texas.
Texas Business reports: SUNNYVALE, Calif. and AUSTIN, Texas—AMD entered into an agreement to sell and lease-back its “Lone Star Campus” located at 7171 Southwest Parkway in Austin, Texas to 7171 Southwest Parkway Holdings LP, an affiliate entity of real estate investment company Spear Street Capital.
Texas Business reports: ABILENE, Texas—First Financial Bankshares Inc. entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Orange Savings Bank SSB for an expected combination of cash and stock purchase price of approximately $56.0 million.
TEXAS BUSINESS reports: FORT WORTH—Who would have thought a bankruptcy would have led to the creation of the world’s largest airlines based in Fort Worth that will dominate U.S. air traffic and absorb a competitor from Arizona?
Texas Business reports: WESTLAKE, Texas—Solera Holdings Inc., a provider of software and services to the automobile insurance claims processing industry, acquired 100% of the outstanding shares of HyperQuest Inc.
Texas Business reports: DENTON—Northstar Bank of Texas, a state chartered banking association headquartered in Denton, a member of Carlile Bancshares Inc., a bank holding company headquartered in Fort Worth, acquired controlling interest in Goldome Financial Inc., a Texas limited liability company headquartered in Flower Mound, Texas.
Texas Business reports: HOUSTON—Synthesis Energy Systems Inc. entered into a revised services agreement with Crystal Vision Energy Limited focused on growth of SES China, the Company's China business platform, via capital raising, M&A, and management services.
Texas Business reports: GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas—Six Flags Entertainment Corporation priced $800 million of 5.25% senior unsecured notes due 2021 in connection with a private offering that is exempt from registration under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended.
Texas Business reports: HOUSTON—Synthesis Energy Systems Inc. closed its strategic equity investment from Shanghai Zhongmo Investment Management Co., Ltd. of $6.27 million for 4,177,335 shares of SES common stock.
Texas Business reports: DALLAS—Cushing MLP Asset Management LP, a subsidiary of Swank Capital LLC, announced the name change of The Cushing Royalty Trust and Upstream MLP Index to The Cushing Upstream Energy Income Index.
Texas Business reports: WESTLAKE, Texas—Solera Holdings Inc., a provider of software and services to the automobile insurance claims processing industry, announced that one of its subsidiaries has completed the acquisition of substantially all of the assets of PS Holdings LLC, whose services are sold under the APU brand name.
Texas Business reports: FORT WORTH and HOUSTON—Union Drilling Inc., a land drilling services and equipment contractor headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas, and Sidewinder Drilling Inc. , a Houston-based land drilling company controlled by Avista Capital Partners, entered into a definitive agreement and plan of merger pursuant to which Sidewinder will acquire all of the outstanding shares of Union Drilling common stock in an all-cash tender offer valued at approximately $242 million.
Texas Business reports: HOUSTON—Synthesis Energy Systems Inc. announced the closing of its strategic equity investment from Hongye International Investment Group Co. Ltd. for a total of $8.7 million, representing 5,777,700 shares of SES common stock, or a 9.99% ownership interest.
Texas Business reports: FORT WORTH—Intervale Capital, a private equity firm focused on the oilfield services industry, sold Ulterra Drilling Technologies LP to ESCO Corporation for $325 million in cash, subject to customary closing adjustments.
Texas Business reports: THE WOODLANDS—Louisiana’s The Shaw Group Inc. signed a definitive merger agreement with Texas-based Chicago Bridge & Iron under which CB&I will acquire Shaw in a cash and stock transaction valued at approximately $3 billion.
Texas Business reports: DALLAS—Southport Lane, a New York-based private equity firm, through its subsidiary Lonestar Holdco LLC, reached a definitive agreement with Dallas National Insurance Holdings to acquire 100% of Dallas National Insurance Company, a Texas based property and casualty insurer, founded in 2005.
Texas Business reports: LEWISVILLE—Orthofix International NV completed the divestiture of its Sports Medicine Business Unit, Breg Inc., to Water Street Healthcare Partners, a strategic private equity firm focused exclusively on the health care industry.
Texas Business reports: SNYDER—Former west Texas business Snyder Brick & Tile will auction its assets Tuesday June 19, 2012 at 11 AM including a 63,950-square-foot industrial warehouse manufacturing property on 9.188 acres, equipment and surplus tile inventory.
Commodity Futures Investing: Method to the Madness Texas Business reports: Commodity futures market participants have traditionally fallen into one of two groups: hedgers and speculators. Hedgers produce or consume a commodity and enter the market to reduce the risk of adverse price movements. Speculators, on the other hand, seek monetary gain by anticipating when and in what direction futures prices will move.
Recently, a third group has entered the marketplace, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas. Seeking neither to hedge risk nor to speculate on prices, these individuals invest in commodity futures as a separate asset class, not unlike someone buying stocks or bonds.
Texas Business reports: DALLAS—New York’s Standard Motor Products Inc., an automotive replacement parts manufacturer and distributor acquired CompressorWorks, a temperature control company, for approximately $37.4 million.
Texas Business reports: HOUSTON—Apache Corporation completed its previously announced acquisition of Cordillera Energy Partners III LLC, a privately held company with operations and acreage across the Granite Wash, Tonkawa, Cleveland and Marmaton plays in western Oklahoma and the Texas Panhandle.
Texas Business reports: FRISCO, Texas—Comstock Resources Inc. completed the previously announced divestiture of certain oil and gas properties located in Tyler and Polk counties in South Texas and Lincoln Parish in North Louisiana.
Texas Business reports: AUSTIN—Asset Revitalization Solutions LLC, an Austin-based distressed commercial real estate asset management company recently completed the acquisition of $73 million in distressed loans from a New York bank.
Texas Business reports: IRVINE, Califorina—CarFinance Capital LLC, a specialized provider of non-prime financing services for auto dealers, opened a new office in Fort Worth which is expected to eventually house up to an additional 125 employees.
The Department of Education has been transferring large batches of federal student loans to new loan-servicing companies — leaving in the lurch some borrowers who are suddenly encountering problems with their loans, such as payments that are mysteriously adjusted up or down.
Texas Business reports: DALLAS—Biometric Signature ID Inc. (BSI), developers of patented gesture biometrics software for Identity authentication over the Internet, closed a Series A financing with Mohegan Biometrics LLC, a subsidiary of the Mohegan Tribe of Indians of Connecticut.
Texas Business reports: AUSTIN—College graduates with nonbusiness backgrounds can now earn a master of science degree in finance (MSF) from the McCombs School of Business. The 10-month degree, which is the newest expansion of McCombs' specialized master’s degree programs, will launch in July 2012.
Texas Business reports: SUGAR LAND, Texas—Imperial Sugar Company completed the sale of its 50% interest in Wholesome Sweeteners Inc. to an affiliate of Arlon Group, a private investment group focused on food and agriculture.
Texas Business reports: HOUSTON and KEMAH, Texas—Delta Seaboard International Inc. and American International Industries Inc. sold Delta's wholly-owned subsidiary, Delta Seaboard Well Service, Inc. to Delta Seaboard LLC, ( Delta LLC) an entity controlled by Delta president Robert Derrick, Jr. and Delta vice president Ron Burleigh.
Texas Business reports: SUGAR LAND, Texas—Arabian American Development Co received notification that its common stock has been approved for listing on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and is currently going through the required regulatory processes associated with the switch to the NYSE.
Texas Business reports: PLANO—ViewPoint Financial Group Inc. received all regulatory approvals for its acquisition of Highlands Bancshares Inc. and Highlands' subsidiary bank, The First National Bank of Jacksboro.
Texas Business reports: AUSTIN—Campus Advantage, a student housing company, receinlty closed its acquisition of two properties, a $100 million joint venture with one of the nation's largest pension funds.
Texas Business reports: DALLAS—Ryan, a leading global tax services firm with the largest indirect tax practice in North America, secured a $100 million (expandable to $135 million) syndicated credit facility led by Bank of America, N.A., including Comerica Bank; Citibank, N.A.; and Fifth Third Bank.
Texas Business reports: HOUSTON—Frost Insurance will acquire Stone Partners Inc., a human resource consulting firm that specializes in compensation, benefits and outsourcing services, effective on January 1, 2012.
Texas Business reports: DALLAS—Highland Funds Asset Management LP will spin off from Highland Capital Management LP and form Pyxis Capital, a registered investment adviser serving financial advisers, institutions, and individual investors seeking registered alternative investment solutions.
Texas Business reports: DALLAS—Generational Equity, a mergers and acquisitions advisor for privately-held and family-owned businesses, announced the sale of its client, Trevathan Tool Company to a private investor.
Texas Business reports: HOUSTON—Prosperity Bancshares Inc. signed a definitive agreement to acquire East Texas Financial Services Inc. and its wholly-owned subsidiary, First Federal Bank Texas (Firstbank).
Texas Business reports: DALLAS—Dallas-based Akard Street Partners, an investment partnership operated by Hunt Realty Investments, agreed to capitalize its newest real estate operating company, Capital Health Holdings LP, which will acquire and selectively develop private pay senior housing assets throughout the U.S., primarily assisted living and memory care facilities.
Texas Business reports: AUSTIN—WhaleShark Media, the world's leading marketplace for online coupons and deals, received $150 million in funding from J.P. Morgan Asset Management and Institutional Venture Partners (IVP) bringing the company's total funding from investors to nearly $300 million.
Texas Business reports: Nebraska-based Ameritas Life Insurance Corp. (Ameritas Life) entered into an agreement in principle to acquire BNL Financial Corporation (BNL), the parent company of Brokers National Life Assurance Company (Brokers National), an Austin, Texas-based insurance company domiciled in Arkansas.
Weekly Credit Card Rate Report Texas Business reports: AUSTIN--The average interest rate on a new credit card offer stayed static this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, despite a rate bump by one of the nation's largest issuers.Full Story » TexasBusiness.com
Texas Business reports: THE WOODLANDS—Huntsman Corporation announced that its Advanced Materials division completed the sale of its stereolithography resin and Digitalis machine manufacturing businesses to 3D Systems Corporation for $41 million in cash.
Texas Business reports: BRENHAM--On May 5, 2011, an Emergency Cease and Desist Order was issued to Emmitt Lewis, Jr., dba Lewis Funeral Home and Chapel for the sale of a trust-funded preneed funeral contract without the required state permit and the mishandling of funds as required by Texas Finance Code Chapter 154, the Texas Department of Banking announced this week.
Texas Business reports: DALLAS--glendonTodd Capital LLC, a private equity firm that focuses on investments in a broad range of industry sectors including financial services, business services, and technology announces the investment into F&M Bancorporation Inc.
Texas Business reports: ALICE, Texas—Forbes Energy Services Ltd. announced that on September 9, 2011, the company and certain of its subsidiaries entered into a five year asset based revolving credit facility with Regions Bank and certain other lenders, which is secured by substantially all of the company's assets.
Texas Business reports: WACO—Life Partners Holdings Inc, parent company of Life Partners, Inc., announced The Nasdaq Stock Market (Nasdaq) accepted the company's plan to regain compliance with Nasdaq Listing Rule 5250(c)(1) (the Rule) which will permit a continued listing of the company's stock on the Nasdaq Global Select market.
Texas Business reports: AUSTIN—Forestar Group Inc. completed the sale of approximately 50,000 acres of timberland in Georgia and Alabama for $75 million to Plum Creek Timber Company, Inc. Forestar reserved mineral rights and retained an option to acquire the mitigation rights to approximately 1,000 acres for use in mitigation banks.
Texas Business reports: AUSTIN—Kimbia Inc. raised more than $4 million in a Series 2 round of funding led by S3 Ventures to expand industry adoption of its Web-based fundraising and event management software.
Texas Business reports: M.R. Beal & Company, an investment banking firm specializing in municipal finance, corporate finance, and equity execution, announced a major expansion in Texas with the opening of offices in Houston and San Antonio to complement the firm’s presence in Dallas.
Texas Business reports: AUSTIN—Temple-Inland Inc. acknowledged that International Paper Company IP announced that it will commence an unsolicited offer to acquire all of the outstanding shares of common stock of Temple-Inland for a price of $30.60 per Temple-Inland share in cash.
Texas Business reports: SAN ANTONIO—Pioneer Drilling Company Inc entered into an amendment and restatement of its existing credit agreement. The amended and restated credit agreement provides the company with a $250 million, five-year, senior secured revolving credit facility.
Texas Business reports: A California firm bought 51 percent of a Houston company and made it a subsidiary. Medina International Holdings Inc. of Corona, California, entered into a with WinTec Protective Systems Inc. of Houston, in which Medina will issue three million shares of its restricted common stock in exchange for 20,400,000 shares of the common stock of WinTec.
Texas Business reports: The Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC), which maintains a special reserve fund mandated by Congress to protect the customers of insolvent brokerage firms, said that it expects to announce on or about September 15, 2011 its decision about the referral provided by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) with respect to the Stanford Group Company, operated by former Waco businessman Robert Allen Stanford.
Texas Business reports: BEDFORD—Foundation Financial Group, a financial services companies in the U.S., will open its seventh U.S. sales center at 1903 Central Drive in Bedford, Texas, between Fort Worth and Dallas.
Texas Business reports:GRAPEVINE—Greenhunter Energy Inc., a diversified renewable energy company focused on water resource management, biomass power generation, wind and solar energy projects, closed a non-brokered private placement of 522,500 units of GreenHunter Energy Inc. at a price of $2.00 per unit, for aggregate gross proceeds of $1,045,000.
Texas Business reports: Oklahoma’s Laredo Petroleum, LLC ("Laredo") and Dallas-based Broad Oak Energy Inc. entered into definitive agreements whereby Broad Oak will become a wholly-owned subsidiary of Laredo in exchange for aggregate consideration of approximately $1 billion.
“Alpha One” Foreign Currency Trader Convicted of Securities Fraud Texas Business reports: Houston—Robert David Watson, 50, of Spring, Texas, the “developer and owner” of “Alpha One”, a purportedly profitable foreign currency investment model, has been convicted of securities fraud after defrauding investors of millions of dollars, United States Attorney José Angel Moreno announced today.Full Story » TexasBusiness.com
Texas Business reports: Houston—Service Corporation International, the largest provider of deathcare products and services in North America bought 70 percent of the outstanding shares of The Neptune Society Inc.
Joint Venture Secures Financing for Renewable Diesel Facility Texas Business reports: Irving—Darling International Inc. announced that Diamond Green Diesel LLC, its previously announced joint venture project with Valero Energy Corporation, has secured financing for the planned construction of its renewable diesel facility in Norco, Louisiana.Full Story » TexasBusiness.com
Texas Business reports: Groesbeck--A Limestone County jury sentenced Reginald Lee Clark to 25 years in state prison after convicting him of stealing more than $400,000 from clients of his investment advisory business. The 12-member jury convicted Clark on a charge of theft on May 25, according to a statement by the Texas State Securities Board.
Texas Business reports: The Justice Department today announced settlements with two lenders, including a Texas-based lender, under the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) to resolve allegations that the lenders wrongfully foreclosed upon active duty servicemembers without first obtaining court orders, in violation of the SCRA.
Texas Business reports: Austin—Rules-Based Medicine (RBM), a provider of biomarker testing services, bought the intellectual property assets from Satoris Inc. RBM itself has signed an agreement to be bought by a Utah firm.
The Texas News Scrawl is a handy reference to stories Texas Business recommends from other news sources. Some of the stories that Texas Business currently suggests include: American Airlines continues to shed jobs; Chemical Safety Board shut out of West probe by ATF; America’s greatest threat: Unsafe work conditions; The West News proves the value of a great weekly newspaper in a community torn up with grief and chaos; Chinese investors checking out Texas, Austin; Texas makes bounce house operators carry liability coverage, but not plants like West Fertilizer; bSpaceX’s Grasshopper leaping to NM spaceport;and more.