Business

Reporting and commentary on Texas businesses and the trends and innovation happening in our state
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Business|
December 1, 1996

Pace on Earth

If you’ve seen a Kiss concert, a truck and tractor pull, or Miss Saigon recently, you can thank Houston’s Pace Entertainment for the privilege—and for the price you paid.

Business|
November 1, 1996

California Scheming

HOUSTON FINANCIER (or, as he is often described in the Golden State media, “Texas tycoon”) Charles Hurwitz clearly got the better side of his recent agreement to swap 3,000 acres of ancient redwoods in Northern California for $380 million in federal and state funds plus other public forest acreage. In

Business|
November 1, 1996

Beer Necessities

To survive at a time of heady demand for craft brews, the mid-sized Spoetzel and Celis breweries have partnered with major corporations. Still, they’re keeping their local flavor.

Business|
September 30, 1996

America’s Marketer

The Dallas Cowboys began the season struggling on the scoreboard, but they’ve continued to score big on the balance sheet. In a coup reminiscent of his deals with Pepsi and Nike, owner Jerry Jones has made an as-yet unannounced deal to designate Columbia/HCA Healthcare Corporation as the team’s official medical

Business|
September 30, 1996

A Shrimp Tale

After nearly fifty years of working Matagorda Bay, Vernon Bates could soon watch his business shut down for good—and so could the thousands of other shrimpers who make their living on the Gulf Coast.

Business|
September 30, 1996

Reality Bytes

Origin Systems founder Richard Garriott has sometimes lived his life like a computer game, but now that the multimedia industry is changing, he can’t play around anymore.

Music|
August 31, 1996

The Music Man

Most businesses in the West Texas town of Alpine cater to locals, but one attracts Eric Clapton, Robert Cray, Junior Brown, and other musical greats. It’s the modest building where Michael Stevens, luthier to the stars, produces electric guitars—fewer than two dozen a year, at $2,700 to $10,000 plus. “We

Business|
July 31, 1996

Bad News, Baird’s

This spring, Texas’ leading white-bread maker was ordered to pay a fine of $10 million and settled a lawsuit for another $18 million. Why does the company have to cough up so much dough?

Business|
April 30, 1996

Holy Cacao!

Introducing El Rey, the Venezuelan chocolate that is wowing chefs everywhere, thanks to the efforts of a Texan with a taste for treats.

Business|
April 30, 1996

7th Heaven

What do Monty Python, the Lion King, Ace Ventura, and Howie Mandel have in common? They’re all part of 7th Level’s strategy to marry show biz with the computer-game biz.

Business|
March 1, 1996

Tough Nuts to Crack

Marketing the Texas pecan like the California raisin seems to make good business sense. So why do small Texas growers think it’s a shell game?

Business|
February 1, 1996

Trailing the Field

Texas was supposed to be horse racing’s salvation, a Thoroughbred–loving state with money to burn. So why can’t the sport get out of the gate?

Business|
January 1, 1996

Domino Effect

This month at least two hundred Texans will converge on Hallettsville for the state championship of straight dominoes. The outcome is unpredictable, but one fact is not: Chances are that every player will tote a set of bones made by Waco-based Puremco, the only manufacturer of plastic dominoes outside mainland

Business|
January 1, 1996

Hot Potatoes

Is it possible to have a low-fat chip that tastes good? After three years of top-secret tinkering, Frito-Lay thinks it has hit upon the ultimate snacker’s delight.

Energy|
November 1, 1995

Crude Awakening

There’s black gold in the South American rain forest—lots of it. Can the oil companies get it out without ruining the jungle and the way of life of the Indians who live there? The perils of drilling in the heart of darkness.

Business|
November 1, 1995

Hostile Makeover

Mary Kay Ash and Jinger Heath have made fortunes getting women to buy and sell their beauty products. But no lipstick or powder can conceal the ugliness between these Dallas cosmetics queens.

Energy|
October 1, 1995

Reversal of Fortune

Boone Pickens and his protégé, David Batchelder, built Mesa Petroleum into an energy giant. Now Pickens’ empire is crumbling and his former aide is leading the charge against him.

Business|
August 6, 1995

Silicone City

From invention to litigation, the breast implant has done more for Houston’s economy—and its psyche—than anything since oil.

Business|
April 30, 1995

Open Season

Are gun sellers responsible for gun deaths? Gun store owners and gun show promoters each say no, but that may be all they agree on.

Business|
April 30, 1995

Are Texans Gun Crazy?

During the first week of April, as the Legislature considered the case for concealed weapons, Texas mourned the consequences of two gun-related tragedies in Corpus Christi: the murder of Tejano superstar Selena Quintanilla Perez and the shooting of five workers at a refinery inspection company by a disgruntled

Science|
April 1, 1995

Drug War!

How a small Houston biotech company and a giant California-based rival are battling over who developed what may be a revolutionary cure for asthma and allergies.

Business|
January 1, 1995

Is MCC Obsolete?

Twelve years and hundreds of millions of dollars later, the vaunted Austin high-tech consortium is still struggling to find its purpose.

Business|
December 1, 1994

Kings of Swing

Can a golfer change the bad habits of a lifetime? The academy at Golfsmith International made a believer out of me.

Business|
September 1, 1994

Bo Pilgrim

He invented the boneless breast and made his chicken a household name. But now his critics are out to roast him.

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