The famous Factory at Franklin has sold in a $24.2 million deal to bring some changes to the shopping center and retail development near the Cool Springs, TN area.
Calvin Lehew, who bought the Old Stove Factory 17 years ago, prevented demolition of the 1929 building in order to make it into a retail outlet. Since then, the Factory at Franklin has become a loved local treasure for those new to Nashville and residents of the Middle Tennessee area.
Brad Kelley, the mysterious local billionaire behind the deal, reached Forbes’ Top 300 Richest Men in America through the $1.2 billion sale of his company Commonwealth Brands in 2001. Originally from Kentucky, Kelley now has a residence in Franklin that came as a result of wanting to be closer to his daughters school.
Kelley has remained reclusive through his success, and did not meet with Lehew to officiate the deal. Instead, Lehew met to negotiate with Kelley’s representative Bill Murphree. Murphree will also be part of the group overseeing the changes made to the outlet.
Kelley was also represented by Harvey Johnston, an attorney based out of Bowling Green. Johnston claims the Factory will see no significant changes as of yet.
Said Johnston: “There won’t be much change at this point in time. They do have some new ideas. But it will never leave the original tradition built up over the years.”
People can, however, expect to see a few new names in the outlet. Johnston reported the few changes will focus on music, technology, art, and media.