Category: Industry

Please meet Dean Burnette, the founder and managing broker at Best Business Brokers (B3)

6605 Abercorn St., Suite 101D, Savannah, GA 31405 

Dean Burnette has just been named the president of the Georgia Association of Business Brokers (GABB) for 2019. We sat down with him to learn more about his background and the future trends of business brokering.

Dean Burnette, Best Business Brokers

Dean Burnette, Best Business Brokers

Dean, please tell us a little about yourself. I was born at Chenault Air Force Base in Lake Charles, La., on Contraband Bayou — and yes, that’s a real place — in Calcasieu Parish and went to Sulphur High School in Sulphur, La., about 10 miles from Lake Charles. I’ve owned businesses for more than 30 years and started Best Business Brokers in 2009. Since then, I’ve sold millions and millions of dollars worth of businesses and real estate, and for several years, I have been recognized in the GABB (Georgia Association of Business Brokers) Million Dollar Club.

How did you get into business brokering? I had three years of drafting in high school and thought I’d be an engineer, but life had other plans. I practically started a business right out of high school and never looked back. I’ve bought, started and sold my own businesses, and that was the basis for my becoming a business broker. My professional mentor is a man named Ed Pendarvis. Ed founded Sunbelt Business Brokers and I had the privilege to work with him in 2007 and 2008 before I started Best Business Brokers in 2009. We have three brokers and are still growing.

What does B3 do? Founded in 2009, Best Business Brokers helps people buy or sell businesses and commercial real estate, listing in the southeast USA, primarily in Georgia and South Carolina. We specialize in manufacturing businesses, technology businesses and logistics businesses with revenues between $1 million and $30 million and industrial/commercial real estate. Primarily, our clients are owners looking to sell. Our team counsels clients on the process, helping to set their expectations and stage their business or property for sale. Ultimately, we guide clients through every step of the transaction.

What aspect of your business are you most passionate about? A lot of people wouldn’t realize a business brokerage is involved in helping people, but that’s really true. It’s not just that real estate and businesses change hands; it’s much more personal. Many of my clients are more than 70 years old. They’ve spent their lives building their businesses, and it’s not uncommon for illness or some other life circumstance to prompt them to put their life’s work on the market.

I realize that selling a business, sometimes before you are ready, is more than a transaction. My clients trust me with their most private financial information and, many times, personal information too. They depend on me to help them through a significant life change.

Give us an example. A gentleman contacted me, looking to buy a certain size and type of software company and asked whether I could help him. When I found the right business, I called the owner, introduced myself and explained why I was calling. He said he had not thought about selling, but after a brief pause he offered, “I’ll sell it for a million dollars and not a penny less!” The potential buyer was enthusiastic, and the sale closed in a few short months. Only a few weeks later, the seller called to thank me for contacting him when I did. He said he had just been diagnosed with cancer and had he not sold the business when he did, it would have made his life more difficult.

What about your business makes you the proudest? We are one of the top business brokerages in Georgia. I take a great deal of pride in the clients and customers we have and the transactions we’ve brokered. It is a privilege to work and be trusted by this caliber of people.

What are some of the challenges you have encountered? Economic cycles. When some businesses and industries suffer, others flourish. Our challenge is staying ahead of the curve.

As a business broker, what trends do you see in the future? I’m an eternal optimist. Life is good and life will be better than we can imagine. The Port of Savannah will continue to set records for business merger and acquisitions activity in the southeast U.S., and we will be ready for it.

What do you do when you are not working? I am married to Dr. Deborah Burnette, and we have two children and four grandchildren. Debbie came home one day and told me Tommy Holland and Skip Jennings were starting a Wednesday night jam session at the Coffee Deli over on Habersham Street. I went and have been going back for almost six years. I guess you could say I’m one of the Midtown Pickers. I enjoy kayaking, taking pictures with my iPhone and my drone and running. I also really enjoy being in parades on the parade float the Santa Maria.

Dean will serve as the president of the Georgia Association of Business Brokers until 2020. For more information about the organization or business brokering, please contact Dean Burnette at or 912-349-0940.


Carriage Trade Public Relations Announces July Open for Business®: 6 Ways to Up Your Storytelling Game

Carriage Trade Public Relations Announces July Open for Business®: 6 Ways to Up Your Storytelling Game

(SAVANNAH, GA) Join Carriage Trade Public Relations®, Inc. for the July session of their monthly Open for Business® series. This month’s topic is focused on storytelling, brand journalism and staying ahead of the curve. Cynthia Cradduck, Junior Partner, will host the conversation on Wednesday, July 31, at noon.

Cynthia Cradduck

Cynthia Cradduck

Open for Business® is a monthly online social media article review series, where current marketing articles are discussed that will help your business become more competitive. It is held on the last Wednesday of every month at noon via Facebook Live on Carriage Trade Public Relations’ account.

The article this month can be found here:

For more information, visit

Carriage Trade Public Relations, Inc. is Savannah’s premier reputation management company. Founded in 1995 by Marjorie Young to help businesses increase their visibility in their community and globally online through its trademarked strategy, the REPUTATION MATRIX™ method.

Elizabeth Poole
Director of Communications

Chris Tilton of The Dewitt Tilton Group to Present at Savannah Area Chamber of Commerce’s August Power Hour Luncheon

(SAVANNAH, GA) Chris Tilton, co-principal of the Dewitt Tilton Group, will present “Metal Buildings: Modern Marvels? Businesses Turning to Budget-Friendly Options for State-of-the-Art Appearances” at the Savannah Area Chamber of Commerce’s August Power Hour Luncheon on Tuesday, August 6.

Chris Tilton, Dewitt Tilton Group, a Commercial Construction Company

Chris Tilton, Dewitt Tilton Group, a Commercial Construction Company

The luncheon will take place from 11:15 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. on Tuesday, August 6, at the Grand Lake Club located at 815 Southbridge Blvd in Savannah. The cost to attend for Chamber members is $12.00. The event is also open to prospective Chamber members who can contact Tina Mock at for more information.

“It’s a topic I believe our community will be interested and surprised to learn about,” said Tilton. “We used to think of metal buildings as being the ugly shed in our neighbor’s backyard, but they really have evolved into design-worthy and environmentally-friendly structures.”

To register for the luncheon, please visit

MORE INFORMATION ON DEWITT TILTON GROUP The Dewitt Tilton Group, a premier construction firm located in Savannah, Ga., specializes in commercial construction. The principals, Andrew Dewitt and Chris Tilton, have over 50 years of combined experience in the local construction industry. The firm manages every aspect of a commercial project from pre-construction to the final walk through. Known for using only highly reputable contractors, the Dewitt Tilton Group brings to the table design, engineering and construction capabilities which guarantees a smooth construction process for each client. The firm is located at 2807-A Roger Lacey Avenue, Savannah, GA 31404. For more information or to contact the Dewitt Tilton Group, please call 912.777.3404 or visit


Kim Thomas
Dewitt Tilton Group

Cynthia Cradduck
Carriage Trade Public Relations®, Inc.
Cecilia Russo Marketing

Savannah SCORE Offers Opportunity for Entrepreneurs to Win $10K to Launch Their New Business

(SAVANNAH, GA) Got an idea for a unique, exciting new product or service? Then consider entering Savannah SCORE’s “BizPitch Savannah™ 2019″ entrepreneurial competition. A kinder, gentler version of TV’s “Shark Tank”, aspiring Savannah area entrepreneurs will be able to pitch their new business ideas to a panel of judges for the chance to win over $10,000 in cash and professional business services to help launch their new business.

Proposed businesses must be new start-ups or, if you have an existing business, you must have obtained your Savannah/Chatham County business license after March 1, 2018. Winners must locate and operate their business within Chatham County and launch by January 1, 2021. Applicants must be at least 18 years old.

Complete Rules and the Online Application are available at Applications will be accepted through midnight, July 29, 2019, with a $25 non-refundable application fee payable at the time of submission.

Eight finalists will be chosen to pitch their business ideas to the panel of judges at Savannah SCORE’s “BizPitch Savannah™ 2019” event on Friday, Sept. 6, from 4-6:30 p.m. The event will be held at the Coastal Georgia Center at 305 Fahm Street, Savannah. It will be free and open to the public.

The five judges are:

“BizPitch Savannah™ 2019″ is presented by the Savannah Chapter of SCORE in partnership with the following sponsors and professional services donors:

The City of Savannah; Savannah Economic Development Authority; Savannah Area Chamber of Commerce; Small Business Assistance Corporation; UGA Small Business Development Center; The Creative Coast; MassMutual; Wells Fargo-The Private Bank; BB&T; Savannah Morning News/GateHouse Media; HunterMacLean; Kenkel Design; Carriage Trade Public Relations® Inc.;; Advertising Specialty Services; Habersham Beverage; and Sand Dollar Accounting.

The competition rules and online application are available at For more information, visit the website or contact Savannah SCORE at

About SCORE 

SCORE is the nation’s largest provider of business mentoring and educational services to aspiring entrepreneurs and small business owners. Savannah SCORE has been named SCORE’s 2019 Mid–Market “Chapter of the Year”. To schedule a free business mentoring session with a Savannah SCORE mentor, go to or call 912-652-4335.

Inaugural Savannah Film Alliance Honors Gala to Recognize Film and Television Professionals

Inaugural Savannah Film Alliance Honors Gala to Recognize Film and Television Professionals

(SAVANNAH, GA) Savannah’s calendar of social events gets a glamorous new entry this year with the launch of the Savannah Film Alliance Honors Gala. The Gala will recognize and honor several key professionals for their invaluable contributions to the local film and television industry. The theme of the event will be “Old Hollywood” and will be held Saturday, September 28, at the new event venue, Victory North, located at 2603 Whitaker Street.


Savannah Film Alliance Honors Gala


Entertainment will be the focal point of this red carpet event. The Savannah Film Alliance (SFA) will invite its membership of filmmakers, musicians, and actors to show off their talents throughout the night.

There is also an immersive theater experience planned for the event, whereby guests will interact and engage with live entertainers at an old Hollywood “High Society” gathering. “The immersive experience is designed to transport event attendees back in time into a glamorous alternate reality,” said Charles Bowen, founder of the SFA. “This is the cutting edge of live theater and I think people will remember this night for a long time.”

The entertainment industry is a force to be reckoned with in Georgia as it has grown in the last decade from $240 million in 2007 to almost $10 billion in 2018 with 30 to 40 productions underway in the state at any given time. In Savannah alone, the economic impact from motion picture and television productions has risen from $26 million in 2012 to $254.6 million in 2018.

While threats of a Georgia boycott have dominated the news recently, the SFA Honors Gala aims to shift the focus instead to all of the positive aspects of the local entertainment industry. “I am especially excited for the opportunity to recognize and reward all of the hard-working professionals that have transformed Savannah into one of the most sought-after filming destinations in the world,” said Bowen. “The Gala will not only be wildly entertaining, but it will shine the spotlight directly on many of the industry members who are quickly becoming shining stars – not to mention economic drivers – in our community.”

VIP tickets to the Gala are $150 and will include valet parking, early entry at 6:30 p.m., private performances and meet and greets, a professional photo on the red carpet, a special award, and a VIP swag bag.

General admission tickets are $75 and will allow entry when the doors open at 7:30 p.m.

All attendees will enjoy live entertainment, heavy hors d’oeuvres, and an open bar. The honors ceremony will begin at 8:30 p.m. and an onsite after party will last from 9:30 until 11 p.m.

Sponsorship opportunities, including the title sponsorship, are available at several levels.

For more information on tickets and sponsorships, visit

Charles J. Bowen, Founder
The Bowen Law Group

Cynthia Cradduck
Carriage Trade Public Relations® Inc.

Aging in Place: Ways to Update a House for Staying Long Term

Aging in Place: Ways to Update a House for Staying Long Term
By Sherry Daniel

No one likes to bring up the dreaded move that many of us fear will face us in the future. What am I referring to? Retirement homes.

No matter how improved and comfortable retirement homes may be, there’s nothing quite like living in a home in which you’ve made memories and crafted to suit your personality and needs.

With this in mind, many of our elderly neighbors are choosing to remain in their family homes rather than move to a retirement facility. To make that work smoothly, however, renovations are needed to adjust for an aging individual’s changing needs.

As the CEO and owner of Roto-Rooter Plumbers of Savannah, I notice different trends when we see an influx of specific requests. Lately, we’ve had more and more of our older customers ask for services such as height adjustments, mobility assistance installations and easier methods of accessibility in bathrooms and kitchens.

If you’re considering selling your home and moving to a retirement community, you might want to think about repairs or renovations that could make your home accessible. Below are 10 home plumbing renovations that will improve the accessibility of different parts of your house and allow you to postpone or avoid moving to a retirement home altogether.

1. Install pressure-balanced valves to provide water at steady temperatures regardless of pressure fluctuations in your kitchen and bathrooms.

2. Install grips around the shower, the toilet and your bed. Strategically located grab bars can prevent life-threatening falls. Slip-prevention flooring can help you feel secure as well.

3. Install hand-held, adjustable height, shower heads with a six-foot hose to direct the water where it’s needed.

4. Add a fold-down seat or bench in the shower. Some come with padded backs for extra comfort. Others will have a structure that extends outside the tub for easy entrance and exit.

5. Keep your spaces wide. Keep entryways, hallways and bathroom spaces clear of obstacles and wide enough for a wheelchair or other assistance device.

6. Install a toilet with the necessary height. Having the toilet at the proper height can make an incredible difference in the comfort and safety of your bathroom. A toilet paper holder designed for one-handed changing might be an added bonus.

7. Depending on your needs, a toilet/bidet combination can significantly improve hygiene.

8. Walk-in tubs and roll-in showers are imperative for those with mobility inhibitors. A roll-in shower is a shower stall that has a curb-less entrance and the door (or opening) is a minimum of 36 inches wide.

9. Consider a wheelchair accessible sink that is hung on the wall to leave space for your knees (or wheelchair) beneath a pipe-covering panel to protect your legs. You can also install lever handle faucets or faucets that are pedal controlled.

10. Install adjustable height (or varying height) counter tops with provisions for roll-under access in front of the sink and main counter top.

Taking advantage of these 10 tips can make your bathrooms wheelchair or simply “aging” accessible. Making these renovations can extend the amount of time you can live safely in your family home.

Sherry Daniel is the owner and CEO of Roto-Rooter Plumbers of Savannah. Roto-Rooter Plumbers of Savannah is headquartered at 2016 E Broad St, Savannah, GA 31401. The main office line is 912-355-1287 and you may contact Sherry Daniel directly at 912-629-1646. The local website is

Sherry Daniel, Roto Rooter Plumbers of Savannah

Sherry Daniel, Roto Rooter Plumbers of Savannah



Metal Buildings as a Trend

Metal Buildings: Modern Marvels?

By Chris Tilton

Time was, when you heard the words “metal building,” your lip might well curl a bit. The best that could be said was that they were utilitarian. They may have gotten the job done, but they didn’t do it with any style or grace.

It was sort of like your reaction to your least favorite neighbor’s eyesore of a metal yard shed but on a larger scale.

But things change. Bag phones became smartphones. Black-and-white TV became color and then the high definition. Video rental stores became streaming services. And metal buildings became a trend, driven by innovation that drove up demand. Today, a metal building may be the proper option for your new build.

Don’t just take my word for it, look at the statistics. Over the past five years, the structural metal product manufacturing in the US industry has grown to reach revenue of $50 billion in 2019, according to IBISWorld.

Sustainability has a lot to do with this. “Green” building practices are a driving force in today’s construction industry, and it’s kind of hard to beat a material that can be assembled with recycled metal and then be recycled itself decades down the road.

Metal buildings are “green” in more ways than that. Insulated metal panels, or IMPs, are the building blocks for many metal buildings. IMPs sandwich insulating foam between two “skins” of metal panels. Some of this material boasts impressive R-values, which is how we measure the effectiveness of an insulating product. Given Savannah’s climate, that’s a big plus.

Want more eco-features? Some forms of metal roofing reflect the sun’s heat, rather than passing it along into the building beneath. You don’t have to air condition heat that doesn’t get inside in the first place.

Other positive factors are durability and the fact metal buildings are inherently resistant to fire.

Modern manufacturing processes make precise fabrication of IMPs and other components possible. That means when raw materials arrive on the construction site for an intelligently designed metal building, they really aren’t “raw.” They’re ready for the assembly that makes them part of the cohesive building process.

But what about the appearance?

Even with all the plus factors metal buildings have going for them, I’d like to think no one wants to build a homely building, and early generations of metal buildings were just that. The Quonset hut of the World War II era wasn’t a beauty to most of us (although that trademarked product still has its fans today), and its successor buildings tended to be grim metal boxes – sort of soulless filing cabinets for factories and people.

But that’s changed, too. Architects have learned how to work with the new materials, and metal building components come with a versatile selection of shapes, sizes and finishes.

And in color? Well, builders are no longer limited to the dust-colored options of the first generation of metal building components. You know, those vague variations on beige, gray and olive. Instead, the full-color palate is available to play a role in metal buildings making positive design statements.

Metal buildings entered the market as industrial properties, places where utilitarianism was an asset. Today, however, they’re finding their way into properties that house retail or office space, places that depend, to some degree, on the commercial equivalent of curb appeal.

Is metal my favorite? Well, I confess to a certain fondness for the new Livingood’s store in Pooler, Jeff’s Beverage in Richmond Hill and the Preciball USA headquarters, metal buildings that we built in the last two years. It’s the perfect choice for some projects and a good choice for others – but not for all. Any new build project requires careful consideration of all the options, and there’s no cookie-cutter solution.

That said, metal buildings are here to stay, having shed their initial major flaws and picked up numerous refinements.

Chris Tilton is president and co-founder of Dewitt Tilton Group, a Savannah-area commercial construction company.

Chris Tilton
Dewitt Tilton Group, a Commercial Construction Company