Success is everywhere. Memphis businesses and organizations are using innovation and breaking new ground to lift the bottom line and improve quality of life in the city. Here are 10 of the most dynamic, large and small, financial and cultural, well known and barely known — all of whom are sure to make a memorable impact in the coming year.
It is, quite simply, a thrilling time to be in business in Memphis, to be part of the city’s expanding financial and cultural growth and to reaffirm why we call it the City of Good Abode.
Elvis Presley Enterprises
Elvis Presley Enterprises is upping the ante to make Graceland bigger and better. October saw the opening of The Guest House at Graceland, a full service, 450-room $92 million hotel. In March, a new $40 million, 220,000 square-foot visitor complex will open, replacing the existing 47,000 square-foot facility. Its cornerstone is the Elvis: the Entertainment exhibit building, said Jack Soden, EPE’s President & CEO: “It will house the entertainer’s artifacts — gold records, awards, instruments — in a 15,000-plus square foot space using sophisticated technology to tell his story.” Relocating those items now in the mansion allows EPE to restore the home.
“Graceland will be devoted to home and family, making it even more authentically evocative of the way it was when Elvis lived there,” Soden said. EPE majority owner Joel Weinshanker “came to the table with an enthusiasm for Graceland,” Soden said. “We have an owner committed to shepherding the financing to get this done.”
The construction on 120 acres is bringing a financial boost to Memphis — especially the neighborhood. About 70 percent of Graceland’s more than 400 employees live in Whitehaven and more workers will be added. “This level of investment is a catalyst for campus and neighborhood,” said Soden. “It’s the dawn of a new era for us.”
Story by: Jon W. Sparks
Photo by: Troy Glasgow