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Celebrated jazz guitarist Wes Montgomery was born 100 years ago in Indianapolis and spent much of his career here, recording and performing on Indiana Avenue, sometimes with his brothers and often with some of the greatest jazz, soul and even pop musicians of his generation. Montgomery died in 1968 at just 45 years old. But during his relatively sh…
 
David Becker is considered one of the godfathers of the Indiana technology ecosystem, having started and sold several tech firms over the past four decades. But he’s probably best known for his current effort, which broke new ground in an entire tech sector. In 1999, he launched First Internet Bank of Indiana, an online-only bank that offered typic…
 
Tom Wood Automotive Group is one of the best-known family businesses in central Indiana, with more than a dozen car dealerships and 1,000 employees. But relatively few people have heard of Jeff Wood, who took over the company after Tom Wood, his father, died from lung cancer in 2010. Jeff Wood grew up in central Indiana and worked in the family bus…
 
On Wednesday, global tech giant Salesforce revealed in a sparse regulatory filing that it planned to lay off about 10% of its employees companywide. The reason, in a nutshell: Salesforce hired too many people during a recent period of massive growth, and customers now are cutting back on spending in the uncertain economic environment. And speaking …
 
IBJ reporter Dave Lindquist, in this week for Mason King, talks with Emmis Corp. founder Jeff Smulyan about his 2022 memoir “Never Ride a Roller Coaster Upside Down: The Ups, Downs and Reinvention of an Entrepreneur” The book—which he wrote at his daughter’s urging—caps a year of tremendous transition for Smulyan, whose roster of former employees i…
 
Given what we know about inflation and the chances for a recession, you could assume this isn’t the best time to start a business that depends on consumer discretionary spending. Shari Jenkins isn’t too concerned. She’s the restauranteur behind the Zionsville mainstays Noah Grant’s Grill House & Oyster Bar and Salty Cowboy Tequileria. She’s now in …
 
This is the time of year, for better or worse, that we usually take stock of our investments and either count our blessings or lick our wounds. Sad to say, there hasn’t been a year when traditional equity investments—aka the stock market—have behaved this poorly since 2008, and we all know what happened there. Of course, 2022 can’t compare to the f…
 
No one disputes that Indiana residents rank very low among all Americans in terms of their health. The operative question, which will be posed to Indiana legislators in their budget-writing session beginning next month, is to what extent the state should try to intervene and do something about it. Last year, Gov. Eric Holcomb convened a special com…
 
The U.S. airline industry isn’t just short of the pilots needed to meet travel demand. The demographic makeup of the industry’s pilot workforce remains overwhelmingly male and white. Indianapolis-based Republic Airways, one of the largest regional airlines in America, has a vested interest in trying to stock its talent pipeline—not just with pilots…
 
The convention and events business that downtown Indianapolis has worked so hard to develop over recent decades has recovered fairly well from the worst days of the pandemic. But there’s a new competitor on the horizon. Nashville, Tennessee—a fellow NFL city that also has positioned its downtown for tourism—is on the brink of building a new footbal…
 
Although the White House isn’t up for grabs during the U.S. midterm elections on Tuesday, there are candidates for federal, state and local positions on the ballot that affect central Indiana residents in any number of ways. U.S. Sen. Todd Young, a Republican, is defending his seat from Tom McDermott, the Democratic mayor of Hammond, and Libertaria…
 
The guest for this week’s IBJ Podcast is Ben Lytle, whom longtime residents will remember as the former CEO of Indianapolis-based health insurer Anthem. He captained the strategy that turned Anthem into one of the largest health insurers in the nation and a publicly traded firm on the New York Stock Exchange. He also founded, took public and sold t…
 
IBJ columnist and frequent IBJ Podcast guest Pete “The Planner” Dunn had a piece in the Oct. 14 issue with an uncharacteristically sharp rebuke for a reader who was woefully uninsured. IBJ Podcast host Mason King took it to heart, because he has long avoided getting life insurance, despite being in his 50s, married and the father of a 6-year-old. B…
 
Three of IndyCar’s most prominent teams—Andretti Autosport, Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing and Arrow McLaren SP—are investing a total of $250 million to expand their operations and add as many as 750 jobs in central Indiana. In this week’s podcast, IBJ reporter Mickey Shuey takes on hosting duties and talks with IndyCar President Jay Frye and Rahal…
 
Recent studies from across the country have helped solidify the link between housing instability—for example, substandard conditions, homelessness or needing to move regularly—and poor infant health. In a pilot program based in Ohio called Healthy Beginnings at Home, organizers wanted to test the impact of providing pregnant women struggling to fin…
 
In just two years, the arts and culture startup known as Gang Gang has become one of the most influential and active producers of events in Indianapolis, promoting the creative economy and the concept of equity. The founders are Malina Simone Jeffers and Alan Bacon, working from the precept that creative people of color continue to be underrepresen…
 
To the extent Butler University has become a known quantity at the national level, we can thank its basketball program. Since 2006, the Bulldogs have earned seeds in the NCAA men’s basketball tournament 10 times, including reaching the national championship final twice. That 16-year period also coincides with the tenure of Barry Collier as Butler’s…
 
In 2013, the Indiana Legislature created a path for artisan distillers to produce and sell spirits to the public by the glass, bottle or case. The hope was to start a micro-distilling industry in Indiana, and one of the first businesses to take the leap was called Hotel Tango Distillery. It was co-founded by husband-and-wife attorneys Travis and Hi…
 
Indianapolis leaders have pleaded with state lawmakers for decades to change the state’s formula for funding local roads, which they say shows favoritism to rural counties with sparse traffic. When the state determines how much funding to pass along, it counts streets, roads and thoroughfares by their length. So, for example, a one-mile stretch of …
 
The Indiana Fever just endured its worst season since joining the WNBA in 2000. On Aug. 14, it finished the season on an 18-game losing streak, posting a record of 5-31. The Fever won the WNBA title 10 years ago, but the team hasn’t made the playoffs since 2016. It also hopes to see a major turnaround in attendance. Due to ongoing renovations at Ga…
 
We want our kids to learn how money and personal finances work at a fairly early age so they learn how to make smart decisions. IBJ happens to have a good resource for this bit of childhood development: personal finance columnist Pete Dunn, aka Pete the Planner. He has two kids, ages 10 and 13, and has spent several years trying to imprint them wit…
 
Monument Circle is the heart of Indianapolis—and has been since the town of Indianapolis was platted in 1821. Unfortunately, the Circle is subject to the same wear and tear as any street. In the 1970s, its surface—both the street and the adjacent sidewalks—were replaced by red bricks. As a nod to the Circle’s historic status, bricks are terrific. B…
 
It’s no small achievement that Gwendolyn Rogers correctly predicted that Hoosiers would pay a pretty penny for high-end baked goods in an environment right out of “Cinderella.” In 2014, she opened The Cake Bake Shop in Broad Ripple, transforming a free-standing home on the north side of the village into a kind of confectioner’s paradise, populated …
 
Chuck Lofton was hired as a weather forecaster and anchor for WTHR Channel 13’s “Sunrise” morning show when it debuted in 1985. He since has survived any number of severe weather events, including tracking tornados, as well as the notoriously fickle TV news business. But in March, he had a big health scare, followed by triple-bypass heart surgery a…
 
Tony Dzwonar had just wrapped up three consecutive terms on the Washington Township school board—serving from 2008 to late 2020—and was looking for a way to spend his extra free time. He remembered that the district –like most school corporations—needed bus drivers. He received the required training and a commercial driver’s license before becoming…
 
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