For the third year in a row, FORBES has named North Carolina the Best State for Business (2017 was its first time on top). Over the past decade, people have been flocking to North Carolina, which has one of the highest net migration rates in the nation. In terms of percent of overall jobs, the state has the lowest union workers in the nation. As a result, labor costs are 8% lower than the national average, ranking sixth lowest in the world. North Carolina has finished in the top five in the nation for the last 14 years. The contentious HB2 or "Bathroom Bill" which allows residents to use the public facilities that correspond to their biological gender, has had an influence on North Carolina's business environment. The NBA's All-Star game was canceled in Charlotte, and the NCAA and ACC decided not to hold tournaments in the city. Following the law's passage, PayPal and Deutsche Bank put their growth plans on hold. In May, two months after the North Carolina legislature partly revoked the measure, the NBA awarded Charlotte the 2018 All-Star Game.
Ivey is stirring things up at Reynolds, the second-largest cigarette company in the United States, which is 135 years old. Cigarette prices have plummeted as a result of smoking prohibitions, health issues, and a 62-cent-per-pack tax hike last year. She promotes smoke-free cigarette products, such as flavored, dissolvable strips, which are more discreet and appealing to women. The FDA, on the other hand, compares the drugs to cigarette candies, which could appeal to children and teenagers. Faced with criticism from her board, she recently purchased Niconovum AB, a Swedish business that manufactures gums and sprays that, ironically, may help her clients stop smoking, for $43 million. Eclipse cigars, dissolvable Camel Strips at sessions, and strawberry Twizzlers are among her favorites.
John Sall cofounded statistical software firm SAS with James Goodnight in 1976.
The two partners met at North Carolina State, where Sall was studying graduate-level statistics and Goodnight was pursuing his Ph.D.
SAS saw $3.1 billion in revenue in 2019 and has more than 83,000 customers, including banks, government agencies and insurance companies.
SAS offers employees generous workplace perks, including an on-site health care center, pharmacy and daycare services.
Sall and his wife, Ginger, have given over $130 million to their Sall Family Foundation, which invests in the environment, public health and science.
In 1976, James Goodnight and John Sall cofounded the analytics software company SAS, which he encountered while a PhD student at North Carolina State University.
Since the company's inception, when it developed tools to analyze agricultural data, Goodnight has been at the helm.
SAS goods are currently used by over 83,000 companies around the world, with $3.1 billion in sales in 2019.
Goodnight and Sall, who is also a billionaire, co-founded Cary Academy, a private school, and own a country club and a hotel together.