Business news

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Volkswagen is objecting to a request from a small group of maintenance workers at its lone U.S. assembly plant to hold a vote on whether to be represented by the United Auto Workers union. The company is instead calling for a full vote by all maintenance and production employees at the plant.

The German automaker said in a statement Monday that the effort to secure collective bargaining rights for 165 maintenance workers at the Chattanooga factory isn't consistent with Volkswagen's "one team" approach to operating the facility.


MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (WMOT)  --  A new study suggests Goodwill Industries is having an outsized impact on Tennessee’s economy.

The Business and Economic Research Center at Middle Tennessee State University has been working on the economic impact study for about a year.

Center Director Murat Arik says Goodwill of Middle and Western Tennessee alone pumps nearly half a billion dollars into the state’s economy.

Arik says the most surprising finding for him was the way Goodwill creates partnerships to provide job skills to otherwise unemployable Tennesseans.

SMYRNA, Tenn. (AP) — Nissan is launching production of an updated version of the midsized Altima sedan at assembly plants in Smyrna, Tennessee, and Canton, Mississippi.

The Japanese automaker's U.S. plants have combined to make more than 5.5 million Altimas since 1992.

The Smyrna plant — which is North America's highest-producing auto factory — began making the updated Altima on Monday. Canton is scheduled to follow suit next week.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP)  --  With online shopping growing, Tennessee based FedEx is bracing for a record volumes this holiday season.

The delivery company predicted Monday that shipments from Black Friday through Christmas Eve will rise 12.4 percent over last year to 317 million pieces.

Officials at FedEx headquarters in Memphis say the busiest shipping days will be the Monday after Thanksgiving and the first two Mondays in December.

The company says that to handle the crush, it's hiring more than 55,000 seasonal workers and investing in automation and expansion.

NEW YORK (AP) — Middle Tennessee based tire and auto service company Bridgestone Americas is buying auto parts and repair company Pep Boys in a deal that will help it gain a more dominant position.

The offer involves $15 per share in cash and marks a 21 percent premium to Pep Boys closing price on Friday. The companies valued the deal at $835 million.

It is expected to close in the beginning of 2016 and will add 800 locations to Bridgestone's nationwide network of 2,200 tire and automotive service centers.