Chiquita's move to Charlotte could help local companies


CHARLOTTE, N.C.,None - Chiquita’s move to Charlotte should mean more business for certain local businesses.

The banana company will do what many companies do: outsource a lot. And that means a lot of money up for grabs for local companies. Chiquita told Eyewitness News it hires outside lawyers, accountants, banks, computer experts, building services, human resources consultants and even caterers.

Mama Ricotta's does a lot of catering. Its sales team goes after corporate business. So, when general manager Mark Darvill heard Chiquita is moving to town, he saw an opportunity.

“We do ... our ears do perk up and we go for it,” he said.

Tip Moore does human resources consulting for Bank of America. Maybe he'll land a Chiquita contract, too.

"That's a big opportunity for us to go after some new business,” he said.

Chiquita could end up helping dozens of local companies year after year. Think about what the big banks mean to all the smaller financial companies in town or what Duke Energy means to firms like NARENCO.

Duke doesn't typically install its own solar panel systems, so it pays companies, like NARENCO, to do that. NARENCO vice president Dennis Richter said Duke outsourced work to NARENCO two years ago and that the company survived because of it.

“If we had not received that initial contract from Duke and the size of that contract, then we wouldn't be here today,” he said.

Eyewitness News also spoke with the City of Charlotte's economic developers. They say they're starting a program to connect local small businesses with larger corporations.

More information: Chiquita