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Southwest Virginia


HHHunt credits diversification for its longevity by Joan Tupponce


F


ifty years ago Harry H. Hunt III decided


Blacksburg was the perfect location to start a real estate company. “He and his business


partner, Pete Snyder, got a tip that they should look at Virginia Tech because it was going through a growth phase,” says Hunt’s son, Harry H. “Buck” Hunt IV, vice chairman and CEO of HHHunt Corp. “T ey thought the school would need housing for students, faculty and staff . Our fi rst project was Terrace View Apartments.” Today, the elder


Hunt remains chair- man of the company, which is involved in real estate throughout the Southeast. It has offi ces in Blacksburg, Richmond and Raleigh, N.C., and four primary business lines — senior living, apartment living, homebuilding and land development/communi- ties. (See related story on Page 89.) T e company’s presi-


dent and chief operating FOR THE RECORD


Renovation work is underway to transform the former Executive Plaza in Bristol into The Bristol Hotel, a $20 million project that plans to open in 2017. The seven-story, 53,000-square-foot hotel will have 65 guest rooms, a fine dining restaurant, ground floor and rooftop bars, meeting space and other amenities, according to developer Marcus McCall. (Bristol Herald Courier)


Plans to develop what’s called a pad-ready site at the Greenfield industrial park were approved in June by the Botetourt County Board of Supervisors. The 14-acre site, across International Parkway from where Eldor Corp. of Italy plans to build its East Coast manufacturing and distribution facility, will be the only one of its kind in the Roanoke Valley, County Administrator Gary


Photo courtesy HHHunt


offi cer, Daniel Schmitt, credits the company’s longevity to its diversifi ca- tion. “We are a very solid company,” he says. “Dur- ing the recession, for ex- ample, when homebuild- ing and land development got hit hard, our apart- ment division benefi tted. We kept building through that downturn. Diversifi - cation helped us weather the storm.” T e company has 22 senior living communi- ties operating under the Spring Arbor name in Virginia, North Carolina and Maryland. “T at part of our business is growing because of need,” Schmitt says. “We see that as a big part of our future.” Apartment living is


also on the rise. HHHunt owns and operates about 8,000 apartment homes in 16 communities in North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia and Maryland. “We see more people being renters by choice. We think that is a trend that will continue,” Schmitt says. T e homebuilding


portion of the business


Larrowe said. (The Roanoke Times)


After more than three decades of offering wines, Floyd-based Chateau Morrisette plans to soon add cider and eventually craft beer to its palette. The family-owned Chateau is slated to begin serving its own ciders in August in an effort to meet growing interest in craft beverages. The winery also has filed for a beer license with the Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control as part of long-term plans to establish its own brewery. (The Roanoke Times)


Developer Creative Boutique Hotels (CBH) held a ground- breaking ceremony in June for the 33-room Western Front Hotel in downtown St. Paul. The $7.3 million boutique hotel is expected to open by summer 2017. The hotel will be


saw 41 percent growth last year. At least 45 percent of that growth is attributed to town homes. “T at’s a big shift for us,” Schmitt says. “Five years ago we weren’t building any town homes.”


Key to the company’s


success is its reinvestment policy. “Ninety percent of our profi t goes back into the company,” Schmitt says. “It’s refueling itself constantly. Each year we are setting new record


Regional View


T e company also is


involved in land devel- opment in Richmond, Hampton Roads and North Carolina. “We do land acquisition and site development for our operations, and we sell lots to builders as well,” Schmitt says. “We man- age our planned commu- nities.”


developed utilizing the former Willis and Dye buildings. In addition to guest rooms it will include a restaurant and music venue; rooftop dining; a rooftop bar and outdoor entertainment spaces. (VirginiaBusiness.com)


A year after announcing it was closing a facility near Bonsack, HSN Inc. will begin to downsize. The Florida-based company, formerly known as Home Shopping Network, will begin the gradual process of laying off 257 workers starting Aug. 10, according to a layoff notice filed with the state. HSN announced in June 2015 that it would close its Roanoke order fulfillment facility because it could not accommodate the company’s expansion needs. According to HSN spokesman Brad Bohnert, HSN expects to fully close the facility in April 2017. (The Roanoke Times)


www.VirginiaBusiness.com


profi t marks.” HHHunt has always


had an entrepreneurial mindset. “My dad has a mantra that the best idea wins,” Hunt says. “He knows real estate, but a great idea can come from anywhere. All ideas, no matter from what rank, are welcome and we are open to it.”


PEOPLE


Robert A. Archer and Rachel D. Fowlkes, appointed to the board of Radford University. Archer is president and CEO of Salem-based Blue Ridge Beverage Co. Inc. Fowlkes is a retired executive director of Southwest Virginia Higher Education Center in Abingdon. (News release)


Ken McFadyen, named director of economic devel- opment, Bote- tourt County. McFadyen was executive director of the Blue Ridge


Crossroads Economic Develop- ment Authority, which serves the city of Galax and Grayson and Carroll counties. He also serves on the executive committee of the Virginia Economic Develop- ers Association. (News release)


Harry H. “Buck” Hunt IV and Daniel Schmitt lead HHHunt Corp., which has offi ces in Blacksburg, Richmond and Raleigh, N.C.


ON THE WEB


Complete list of For the Record and People at


VirginiaBusiness.com


Joseph Carson Spooner, named president of


Ferrum College in Franklin County, effective Aug. 1. Spooner, dean of


Jonathan Edwards College at Yale University, is replacing Jennifer Braaten, who is retiring. (News release)


Brown Edwards, a regional certified public accounting firm based in Roanoke, announced that Laura Sprouse and Tim George have joined the partnership. Sprouse, the firm’s administrator, has worked more than 18 years in public accounting. George serves in the firm’s assurance area. He specializes in accounting, taxation and various consulting services for privately held firms. (VirginiaBusiness.com)


VIRGINIA BUSINESS 13


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