A sports management expert at IUPUI says this season's playoff success is a "pivotal step" in rebuilding the Indiana Pacers brand. James Gladden, dean of the Indiana University School of Physical Education and Tourism Management, says the Pacers have spent years battling a damaged image after the brawl in Detroit in 2004. He believes the team's performance over the last two seasons will lead to a slow increase in ticket sales over the next few years. Gladden says the Pacers face attendance hurdles that the Indianapolis Colts don't experience.
Alcoa breaks ground on plant
Alcoa Inc. has broken ground on a $90 million Lafayette expansion. The new facility will produce aluminum lithium, which is designed to help build lighter, more durable airplanes. The expansion is expected to create 75 permanent jobs. Jacques Vanier, chief operating officer for Alcoa Forgings and Extrusions in Lafayette, says increased aluminum lithium production will create new opportunities.
Madison woos California firm
The city of Madison is trying to convince a California renewable-energy company to relocate and bring 200 jobs to Jefferson County. The name of the company and details about what it would build have not been announced. The Madison Courier reports City Council members will consider a land transfer request next week related to the potential deal.
Natural gas proving less costly
The chief executive officer of Evansville-based Vectren Corp. says natural gas bills are at a decade low and could stay at those levels for several years. Carl Chapman says the emerging shale gas supply is contributing to the lower cost.
Hoosier racing app laps rivals
Two Indianapolis companies have created a smartphone application that is being used by racetracks across the country. Mobile app maker Boost Media & Entertainment and motorsports marketer GRand Solutions LLC's RaceTrackApp combines schedules, ticket services and racing results. Fans of the Texas and Charlotte Motor Speedways are already putting it to use.
Angola chamber picks leader
Nicole Vanette will take over at the end of the month as executive director of the Angola Area Chamber of Commerce. She has served as an administrative assistant with the Steuben County organization since last year.
Indy firm eyes new restaurant
Indianapolis-based Epic Hospitality Group plans to open a new restaurant in Carmel this fall. The company hopes to open Mo's A Place for Steaks in the Hamilton County city in September. The group already has a similar restaurant in downtown Indianapolis.
Help wanted at state parks
The Indiana Department of Natural Resources says it is struggling to fill some seasonal job openings. The agency says a number of opportunities exist for maintenance, life guard and security positions at state parks.
Rolls Royce, Army sign deal
Rolls Royce Corp. in Indianapolis has landed a $17 million contract with the U.S. Army. The deal calls for the company to produce helicopter exhaust suppressors and other parts.
Hammond bridge set to open
The George Lake pedestrian bridge in Hammond is scheduled to open this month. City leaders say the bridge is an important part of a bicycle trail system being developed throughout Hammond.
Indiana Tech opens Ky. site
Indiana Tech has opened a new location in northern Kentucky. It is the school's second campus outside Indiana. Indiana Tech expanded to Louisville in late 2011.
Awards finalists to be named
One Southern Indiana has unveiled the finalists for its 2012 Business Awards. The honors are designed to recognize economic and civic contributions by companies in the region. Winners will be announced next week.
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