WASHINGTON — This past year was a big one for business.
It saw the departure of a major regional employer and the addition of another huge one. As some businesses grow in the region, others are closing.
Here is a look back at some of the top business highlights from the year:
Discovery Communications announces its departure from Silver Spring
In January, Discovery Communications announced it would relocate its longtime Silver Spring, Maryland, headquarters to New York City as part of its acquisition of Food Network parent Scripps Networks Interactive.
Discovery employed about 1,300 people locally, and it committed to keeping a presence in Maryland and Northern Virginia even after its headquarters relocation.
Cava acquires Zoe’s Kitchen for $300 million
Fast-growing Mediterranean fast-casual restaurant chain Cava announced in August its $300 million acquisition of much larger fast casual chain Zoe’s Kitchen.
The acquisition, which closed in November, vaulted Cava to more than 350 locations nationwide and more than 8,000 employees in 24 states.
Taylor Gourmet, Mile Isabella file for bankruptcy
In October, popular D.C. sandwich chain Taylor Gourmet unexpectedly filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy and closed its two dozen locations.
And celebrity restaurateur Mike Isabella, who originally filed for bankruptcy reorganization this summer after settling sexual harassment allegations, in December converted his Mike Isabella Concepts business to Chapter 7 liquidation, saying there was no meaningful business to reorganize.
JPMorgan Chase comes to Washington
In November, JPMorgan Chase opened its first retail banking branch in the Washington area, and said it would open several others in the year to come and invest in the D.C.-area’s economy.
JPMorgan pledged to open 70 new branches in the Washington and Baltimore markets and hire 700 employees, and committed to $4 billion in regional home and small business lending, $500 million to affordable rental housing and $25 million to philanthropy and for local economic growth.
(Courtesy JPMorgan Chase)
Courtesy JPMorgan Chase
Amazon chooses Northern Virginia for HQ2
Amazon made its decision about its big HQ2 location in November, announcing it would split the 50,000 jobs between Northern Virginia and Long Island City, New York.
Amazon pledged 25,000 jobs for the Crystal City and Alexandria areas over the next 12 years in what is dubbed “National Landing,” and said those jobs would pay an average salary of $150,000.
(AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
AP Photo/David Zalubowski
Stock market slump
Wall Street’s 2018 performance was the worst for the markets in a decade, and the final month of the year was the worst December for the markets since 1931.
A confluence of developments this year that the financial markets found troubling have included growing trade tensions between the U.S. and China, signs of a slowing global economy, rising interest rates in the U.S. and stock valuations for some of this year’s highflying tech stocks that hit record highs but may have soared past justifiable levels.
As of market close on Thursday, Dec. 20, the Dow Jones industrial average was at a 14 month low and down more than 7.5 percent year to date. The S&P500 Index was negative 7.7 percent for the year.
(AP Photo/Richard Drew)
AP Photo/Richard Drew
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