South Carolina has an estimated 164,400 women-owned businesses, employing 111,200 and attributing to roughly $15.7 billion according to the seventh annual State of Women-Owned Businesses Report, commissioned by American Express OPEN.

The report analyzes data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s Survey of Business Owners and fa 495 years of Husqvarna service ctors in relative changes in Gross Domestic Product.

The analysis, reported by industry, revenue and employment size at the national, state and top-50 metro levels, shares an investigation into the growth trends over the past 20 years among the 11.6 million women-owned enterprises, which employ nearly 9 million people and generate more than $1.7 trillion in revenues.

Nationally, the number of women-owned firms increased by 114 percent from 1997 to 2017, compared to just a 44 percent increase among all businesses. Therefore, over the past 20 years, the number of women-owned firms has grown at a rate of 2.5 times faster than the national average.

South Carolina is ranked fourth in growth of number of women-owned firms over the past 20 years with a 156 percent increase, 40th in growth of jobs created with a 10.9 percent increase and 49th in growth of firm revenues with a 47.8 percent increase.

Hospice Care of S.C. honored by magazine

SPARTANBURG — Hospice Care of South Carolina was recently ranked No. 29 among health care providers and insurers by Modern Healthcare’s 2017 Best Places to Work in Healthcare.

The honor identifies and recognizes outstanding employers in the health care industry nationwide. Modern Healthcare partners with the Best Companies Group on the assessment process, which includes an extensive employee survey gathering about the company's policies, practices, demographics and benefits. In addition, the magazine surveys the organization's staff on eight core areas: leadership and planning, culture and communications, role satisfaction, working environment, relationship with supervisor, pay and benefits, overall engagement, and training, development, and resources.

“A decade ago, Modern Healthcare set out to recognize outstanding employers across the industry. Now in its 10th year, Modern Healthcare’s Best Places to Work in Healthcare has become the hallmark for organizations striving to be just that,” said Fawn Lopez, publisher of Modern Healthcare.

HCSC was honored at the 2017 Best Places to Work Awards Dinner in September in Las Vegas.

Hospice Care of South Carolina has provided patient care since 1997. Licensed to serve every county statewide, it has offices in Orangeburg and Bamberg.

Claflin gets SCBEA scholarship funds

COLUMBIA -- The South Carolina Broadcasters Association’s Educational Foundation announced that it has awarded $50,000 in scholarships to nine schools in South Carolina, including Claflin University in Orangeburg.

The SCBA Educational Foundation, established in 1982, provides grants, scholarships and endowments for South Carolina colleges, technical colleges and universities that offer a curriculum in broadcast training. The Foundation established an endowment in 2004 with a one $1 million target and in 2008 reached that goal. The scholarship program will continue in perpetuity.

Other schools receiving scholarships for 2018 are: Bob Jones University, Clemson University, Furman University, North Greenville University, Tri-County Technical College, Trident Technical College, University of South Carolina and Winthrop University.

Each year the SCBA Educational Foundation accepts proposals for funding from colleges and universities in South Carolina which offer broadcast or communications training. Funding is not provided for capital items or internships. Funds are distributed in May and August of the following year.

“We are proud to support the good work of these South Carolina schools through these annual scholarships” said SCBA Educational Foundation President Steve Sinicropi. “We believe that by investing in their education today, we will have qualified broadcasters to hire tomorrow.”

Ports Authority has strongest October ever

CHARLESTON – The South Carolina Ports Authority reported its strongest October on record, with 184,804 20-foot equivalent container units handled.

Fiscal year-to-date TEU volume is up 5 percent, with 724,799 TEUs handled since the Port's fiscal year began in July.

"Container growth in October was broad-based across multiple segments, with particular strength of export loaded containers," said Jim Newsome, SCPA president and CEO. "All indicators are that the U.S. port market will continue to grow, based on good performance of the global economy. We look forward to the addition of container volume from major manufacturing operations such as Volvo Cars, Samsung Electronics and Mercedes Vans going into 2018."

As measured in pier containers, or boxes handled, SCPA moved a record 105,208 containers across the docks of its two container terminals in October, surpassing the previous October record of 102,413 pier containers in 2004. Fiscal year to date, pier container volume is up 5.7 percent with 410,856 boxes handled July through October.

Inland Port Greer also achieved its strongest October since the facility opened in November 2013, with 11,773 rail moves handled.