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Coke partners with Firehouse Subs for national contest

Coke partners with Firehouse Subs for national contest

ATLANTA -- Coca-Cola and Firehouse Subs are partnering for a national sweepstakes centered on stock car racing.

Coca-Cola is sponsoring the Coca-Cola Photo Finish sweepstakes at Firehouse Subs locations through Apr. 21.

During the contest, life-size cutouts of participating Coca-Cola Racing Family members will be placed in FIrehouse Subs locations. Firehouse Subs guests can snap a photo with the cutout and submit it to win. Guests can submit photos via text to cocacolaphotofinish.com, or entries can be mailed.

Participating drivers include Joey Logano, representing the Georgia and Gulf region; Greg Biffle, representing the West and Central region; Danica Patrick, representing the Florida region; Denny Hamlin, representing the South region; and Tony Stewart, representing the Mid-Atlantic region.

Bank of America adds 35 small biz bankers in Atlanta

Bank of America adds 35 small biz bankers in Atlanta

ATLANTA -- Bank of America Corp. reported Wednesday it hit its target of hiring more that 1,000 small business bankers in 2012, including 35 in Metro Atlanta.

The Charlotte, N.C.-based bank said it extended $280.2 million in credit to Georgia small businesses and $8.7 billion nationally last year. The $8.7 billion was an increase of 28 percent over 2011.

It recently reported net income of $2.8 billion for 2012. It also saw its head count shrink by about 5,000 employees to 267,190 in the fourth quarter, evidence that BofA is still trimming staff levels as it works to lower its expenses. Branches also continued to close, with BofA reporting 5,478 banking centers across its U.S. franchise at the end of the year, down from 5,702 centers a year earlier. 

Bank of America is the third-largest bank in metro Atlanta with 145 local branches and $20.4 billion in area deposits for a market share of 17 percent. 

Get involved with the Atlanta Junior Chamber International

Get involved with the Atlanta Junior Chamber International

ATLANTA -- With the beginning of a new year and New Year’s resolutions on the rise, many people may be asking what next? The Junior Chamber International of Atlanta is answering just that. JCI-Atlanta offers a wide range of opportunities and events such as community service, networking, personal development, happy hours, trips, international relations, and more.

The next event, the General Membership Meeting, will take place on Tuesday, January 22 from 6:00-8:30pm at Park Tavern in Piedmont Park. The public is invited to join the Jaycees for an hour of networking, followed by announcements and keynote speaker, Phil Minnes.

Cobb, DeKalb, Fulton sue HSBC over predatory lending

Cobb, DeKalb, Fulton sue HSBC over predatory lending

ATLANTA -- Three Atlanta-area counties have filed a lawsuit claiming that British bank HSBC engaged in predatory lending that ended up costing them hundreds of millions of dollars.

Cobb, DeKalb and Fulton counties say the bank aggressively signed minorities to housing loans that were likely to fail. The counties say it caused tremendous damage, including extra expenses and lost tax revenue.

The lawsuit says the banks violated the Fair Housing Act, which provides protections against housing or renting policies or practices that discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, family status or handicap.

A lawyer for HSBC said he couldn't comment on the lawsuit, which was filed in October. A federal judge has given the bank until Jan. 25 to file a response.

Which coaches in BCS contention have the best bonuses

(USA Today) -- How does a college football coach making nearly $5.5 million put a real exclamation point at the end of his season?

By increasing his take to more than $6 million, which is what Alabama's Nick Saban will do if the second-ranked Crimson Tide win Saturday's Southeastern Conference championship game and the Bowl Championship Series national title in January.

Saban's bonuses - which would come on top of $165,000 worth of incentives already reached - are a fraction of the millions earned and still at stake for major-college head coaches, according to a USA TODAY Sports review of contracts.

Mark Richt, who will lead No. 3 Georgia against Alabama on Saturday, has a chance for even more bonus money than Saban. After last season, the school gave Richt a new contract that did not increase his $2.8 million in base compensation but nearly doubled his possible bonuses. As a result, Richt has secured an extra $225,000 and could get $575,000 more.

'Sportsplex' planned for area near Atlantic Station

ATLANTA -- A development group is proposing a sports complex next to Midtown's Atlantic Station. 

Odyssey Sports Atlanta would develop the "sportsplex" on land between 450 and 464 Bishop Street. The industrial site is next to the 138-acre Atlantic Station mixed-use development at the Connector and 17th Street.

The new recreational facility would include an Olympic-sized pool; 10 basketball courts; 11 tennis courts; two lacrosse and soccer fields; and a hockey rink.

The project, called Odyssey Sportsplex, will be geared to training elite athletes, said Harold Buckley, an attorney representing the development group.

"These will be blue-chippers that are looking to play professionally," Buckley said.

Chick-fil-A, Coke, Home Depot among 'Most Inspiring Companies'

ATLANTA -- A new consumer survey conducted by an Atlanta-based consulting and training firm ranks Chick-fil-A at No. 7, The Coca-Cola Co. at No. 10 and The Home Depot at No. 17 on a list of the 25 Most Inspiring Companies in the United States.

Performance Inspired surveyed 2,175 consumers to compile the list, reports Forbes.

Apple topped the list for the second straight year.

The goal of the survey was to find a correlation between successful companies and those that inspire their consumers, Performance Inspired told Forbes.