What a strange coincidence: On the day media billionaire and truth-bending D-bag Rupert Murdoch took a shaving-cream pie to the face, Nashville Mayor Karl Dean ends up with egg all over his.
Now that the city and tech company IQT Inc. have officially parted ways in the downtown deal that could be considered the mayor's second-biggest never-was (Pith has to go with the mystical "fairgrounds redevelopment plan" as No. 1), the mayor, his economic development team and all those tech-savvy Nashvillians waiting in line for call-center jobs can shed a few tears in the proverbial beer.
Dean — with a little help from The Tennessean — sold his bid to bring the firm's 900-person call center to Second and KVB as a major victory for the forces of Deanisian Negotiation amid a never-ending recession. Here was the lede from 1100's front-page, three-story package on June 10, the morning after the supposed deal was announced:
When Mayor Karl Dean sat down to lunch on April 20 with two top executives of IQT Inc., he brought along a famous music magazine to help make his pitch for the company to move here.
The publication was Rolling Stone, which had recently written that Nashville has America's best music scene.
"From my point of view, I described why Nashville is such a dynamic city and why it would be a good place for them to be," Dean said. "And how receptive we are to having technology-based companies that are attractive to young people as employees."
The mayor's efforts, along with promises of financial incentives by his office, state officials and others, paid off when IQT announced Thursday that it plans to create about 900 jobs in downtown Nashville, where it will establish its U.S. headquarters and build a customer relationship and technical services center.
The move to C.B. Ragland Co.'s 45,000-square-foot building at 300 Second Ave. S. — and another 15,000 square feet in the nearby XO Communications building at 105 Molloy St. — would be one of the biggest corporate relocations to downtown in Music City's history.
Someone give the mayor a towel when you see him.