562452_633606263322380_1651607605_nVan Michael Salon (vanmichael.com) will open a sixth Atlanta-area location in Alpharetta’s The Avalon development, a $600 million mixed-use community scheduled to open in late 2014. The opening of the sixth location coincides with the 30th anniversary of the opening of the original Buckhead flagship salon. There are also location in East Cobb, Sandy Springs, Norcross and Virginia Highland.

Thumbtack.com, in partnership with the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, has released the second-annual Thumbtack.com Small Business Friendliness Survey showing that Atlanta ranked among the most small business-friendly cities in the country.  The survey obtained data from job creators and entrepreneurs in order to determine the most business-friendly locations. This is the second year in a row that Atlanta has made the list, with the city earning an A- rating and ranking in the Top 10. Other cities to  make the list included Austin, Virginia Beach-Norfolk, Houston, Colorado Springs and San Antonio. To see the full ranking, visit thumbtack.com.

PulteGroup (pulte.com), one of America’s largest homebuilding companies, will relocate its corporate headquarters to 100,000 square feet of Class A office space in as yet-to-be-determined Buckhead building. The company will bring 300 jobs to the city.

Atlanta was recently featured in Fortune Magazine’s “World’s Most Admired Companies” Issue. The special section detailed why Atlanta is a great place to do business for both Fortune 500 companies and innovative start-ups. The article cited the convenience of Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta Airport, the low cost of doing business in the city, distribution capabilities, number of students and universities as well as ranking number 3 in terms of Fortune 500 companies.

Illuminarium (illuminarium.us), a new event space (pictured) designed to inspire collaborative and innovative thinking for public and private meetings and events, has opened in the Telephone Factor, 828 Ralph McGill Blvd, Suite W5.

Central Atlanta Progress (CAP) has announced its new Downtown Partner program (AtlantaDowntown.com/membership) that will encourage area businesses to get involved in the community development organization’s mission to preserve and strengthen the economic vitality of Downtown Atlanta. Businesses, nonprofits, homeowner groups, neighborhood organizations and even individuals are encouraged to become a Downtown Partner. Benefits of the program include exposure through interactive and print media, exclusive invitations to CAP member-only events, e-newsletters, and networking opportunities. “We are excited to open up the rich benefits of involvement in CAP and Downtown community building to an even larger audience,” said CAP President A.J. Robinson. “This new program allows us to engage and promote more of the great businesses and organizations that make Downtown so special.”

Computer Generated Solutions (cgsinc.com), a provider of technology solutions and services, has opened a new office at Perimeter Center in Atlanta to support their continued expansion. The new space will nearly triple the size of their existing office CGS’s new Atlanta location will house sales and IT support staff for their software solutions and will serve as the main office for their Leadtec division, which is undergoing massive international expansion.

Atlanta-based Novelis (novelis.com), which makes and recycles aluminum rolling, was named Metals Company of the Year at the inaugural Platts Global Metals Awards ceremony held in London. Novelis president and CEO Philip Martens was also named CEO of the Year. Novelis was selected as Metals Company of the Year from among 17 finalists in the aluminum; copper; raw materials and mining; scrap and recycling; and steel industries by the independent panel of judges. In late 2011, Novelis made a commitment to increase its recycled content from 33 percent to 80 percent by 2020. In less than two years, the company has reached 43 percent recycled content and is well on its way to achieving 80 percent by 2020.

Lenox Square (simon.com) in Buckhead has announced the addition of Vince Camuto, Invicta, Tumi and Bachrach to its retail roster. In addition, there have been expansions of Lacoste and A|X Armani Exchange store and relocations of Brookstone, Original Penguin and Carol’s Daughter

Modani Furniture (modani.com) has opened a new showroom in Buckhead at 3221 Peachtree Road. The store offers furniture and accessories for the living room, bedroom, outdoor, office and more.

Atlanta-based Affinity Bank has formed a new partnership, Banking for a CURE. If at least 500 new customers open charitable checking and money market accounts with Affinity by Oct.31, 2013, the bank will donate $50,000 to CURE, which helps children with cancer and their families. No donation is required by those opening the new accounts – the bank will make the donation to CURE on their behalf. For more information, visit myaffinitybank.com/cure.

Republic of Couture (ROC) (rocintheweb.com) is now open at the 12th and Midtown development. Located at 1075 Peachtree, the 7,000-square-foot flagship space offers the latest men’s, women’s and children’s fashions, shoes, accessories and designer sunglasses.



Collin Kelley

Collin Kelley has been the editor of Atlanta Intown for two decades and has been a journalist and freelance writer for 35 years. He’s also an award-winning poet and novelist.