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Fortune Industries founder, chairman dies

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Carter M. Fortune, founder and chairman of Indianapolis-based Fortune Industries Inc., has died, the company announced Monday.

Fortune, 70, died Saturday at his home in Destin, Fla.

“We are very saddened by Carter’s passing, but we are prepared to move forward, carry out his vision and honor his legacy,” Tena Mayberry, president and CEO of the professional employer organization, said in a prepared statement.

Fortune, majority shareholder of the publicly traded Fortune Industries, had been diagnosed with a potentially terminal disease, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing released earlier this year.

The company disclosed the illness as Fortune worked on a sale of the business to CEP Inc., a holding company led by Fortune Industries CEO Tena Mayberry and Chief Financial Officer Randy Butler. The planned management-led buyout, which would result in the business going private, values the company at $30.5 million.  

Whether Fortune's death will have an impact on that deal is unclear. Calls to the company Tuesday morning were not returned.

The transaction had faced a challenge from a shareholder who filed suit against the company, attempting to block the deal, but that lawsuit was dropped Aug. 20.

The beginnings of Fortune Industries can be traced to 2000, when Carter Fortune and partners bought the shell of a public company, renamed it WOW Entertainment Inc., and began producing “Women of Wrestling” for television.

After that business failed, he began buying companies in fields such as personnel-related services, manufacturing and distribution. The company sold off everything but the human resources business more than three years ago.
 

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  1. If what you stated is true, then this article is entirely inaccurate. "State sells bonds" is same as "State borrows money". Supposedly the company will "pay for them". But since we are paying the company, we are still paying for this road with borrowed money, even though the state has $2 billion in the bank.

  2. Andrew hit the nail on the head. AMTRAK provides terrible service and that is why the state has found a contractor to improve the service. More trips, on-time performance, better times, cleanliness and adequate or better restrooms. WI-FI and food service will also be provided. Transit from outlying areas will also be provided. I wouldn't take it the way it is but with the above services and marketing of the service,ridership will improve and more folks will explore Indy and may even want to move here.

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  4. Fox has comments from several people that seem to have some inside information. I would refer to their website. Changed my whole opionion of this story.

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