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Talk of the bay: First advantage CEO to seek his fun elsewhere

By Times Staff Writer
Published March 6, 2007


John W. Long, the man who took St. Petersburg's First Advantage Corp. public in June 2003 and built it into a $1.4-billion company, is resigning as chief executive at the end of March. He will be succeeded by Anand K. Nallathambi, First Advantage's president. Long will receive $4.4-million in cash severance and remain a consultant for 18 months. Without being specific, Long said he wanted to build another company, this time in the private market. "That's what's most fun for me," he said. "And if you're not having fun in the morning, why get up?" Nallathambi will work out of First Advantage's Poway, Calif., office. A company spokeswoman said, however, there has been no discussion of moving First Advantage's headquarters from St. Petersburg, where it has 500 of its 4,500 employees.

Regulators not on Nationwide's side

Memo to property insurance companies: Have your numbers in order if you plan to seek a rate cut that's a fraction of what regulators think it should be. Late Friday, Nationwide Florida submitted a 4.5-percent statewide average rate reduction just days after regulators said the cut should be about 24 percent. Monday, the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation rejected Nationwide's request. Nationwide, which plans to refile, is one of the Florida's biggest insurers with about 230,000 policies statewide, including 40,000 in the bay area.

Wallpaper idea in hunt for $100,000

A Tampa woman's passion for wallpapers earned her a place among the four national finalists of a best small-business ideas contest. If she wins the challenge, Given Campbell, above, could walk away with $100,000 in startup money, a free Manhattan storefront for a year and infrastructure and software to run her business. Campbell's idea centered around a store where people can receive consultation and design their own wallpaper. America will vote on the fate of Campbell and her three competitors through Saturday, with the winner named March 13.

[Last modified March 5, 2007, 23:11:55]

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