Week in Review, May 1-5: GiveNOLA Day, Camelback, BEC and More

2023 New Orleans Jazz And Heritage Festival Weekend Two Day One
Photo by Amy Harris/Invision/AP

NEW ORLEANS — Believe it or not, there was time for business between the two busy Jazz Fest weekends. Preliminary numbers show that, on May 3, the 10th annual GiveNOLA Day fundraising event collected nearly $8 million in donations for about a thousand different regional nonprofit organizations. The Greater New Orleans Foundation, which organizes the event, will release more detailed figures soon.

In bummer news, New Orleans-based offshore transportation company Harvey Gulf International Marine announced that it is moving its headquarters out of the Hancock Whitney Building (formerly One Shell Square) in the Central Business District. Third-generation company owner Shane Guidry said crime was a major factor in the decision. One silver lining: Guidry is not taking the company and approximately 100 jobs to Houston or another competing market. Instead, Harvey Gulf plans to build a $5 million headquarters on Airline Drive near Severn Avenue. One parish’s loss is another’s gain.

In more negative news from downtown, debris is falling again from the abandoned Plaza Tower building on Howard Avenue. In response, the city has closed a street out of concern for public safety. Owner Joe Jaeger is trying to sell the star-crossed 45-story structure, which is the third tallest in the city and state, but Mayor LaToya Cantrell publicly floated the idea of demolition this week. Maybe the city should get to that right after imploding the abandoned and moldering former Lindy Boggs Medical Center a few miles away in Mid-City. …

Meanwhile, in less depressing news, the Crescent City Hospitality Group has signed a contract to operate event sales, catering and hospitality services for the Audubon Nature Institute. The group, which includes Dickie Brennan & Co., has been contracted to provide these services at the Audubon Tearoom, Audubon Clubhouse, Audubon Aquarium and Audubon Insectarium. 

“We are dedicated to providing an outstanding experience for our guests through educational and entertaining experiences at our facilities,” said Audubon Nature Institute President Ron Forman in a press release. “As we plan for the future, we want – and our catering guests deserve – an established hospitality leader to create and manage incomparable culinary experiences at our one-of-a-kind venues.”

Here are more of the week’s top business stories.

Categories: A Week In Review, Today’s Business News