PPG Axes 1,700 Jobs As Part Of Global Restructuring

DSC01801PPG Industries Inc. is trimming 4 percent of its global workforce as the world’s largest paint and coatings company tries to reduce costs related to a spate of recent acquisitions.

The Downtown-based company said it was cutting 1,700 jobs as part of a restructuring that also includes reducing production capacity. About 40 of PPG’s 2,500-person workforce in Pittsburgh will lose jobs, the company said.

PPG is aiming to achieve $100 million to $105 million in annual pretax savings by 2017 from the restructuring. Further details of the capacity reductions were not available, the company said.

PPG spent about $2.4 billion buying companies last year, part of a long-term strategy to grow through acquisitions.

Read more: http://triblive.com/business/headlines/8177530-74/million-share-ppg#ixzz3XUlxVMxb
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79.6% Of Susquehanna Shares Were Voted For BB&T Offer

Susquehanna Bancshares shareholders indeed voted by an “overwhelming” margin in favor of their firm being acquired by BB&T.

Lititz-based Susquehanna disclosed the tally from Friday’s shareholder vote in a federal filing on Monday.

Nearly 144.9 million of Susquehanna’s 182.1 million shares outstanding were cast in favor of the acquisition, or 79.6 percent.

Some 1.2 percent of shares, or 2.3 million, were cast against. Some 0.6 percent of shares, or 1.1 million, were cast as abstaining.

Read more:

http://lancasteronline.com/business/local_business/of-susquehanna-shares-were-voted-for-bb-t-offer/article_7f0f4692-cbf0-11e4-a635-9bdd204a385e.html

RadioShack On Brink Of Bankruptcy; Amazon, Sprint In Talks To Buy Stores, Reports Say

RadioShack Corp. is edging toward bankruptcy and both Sprint Corp. and Amazon.com Inc. are interested in buying some of its stores, according to reports.

Under a bankruptcy deal, the century-old electronics retailer would sell about half of its store leases to Sprint Corp., headquartered in Overland Park, Kansas, and close the rest, Bloomberg.com reported Monday. The remaining stores would operate with the wireless carrier’s name, meaning RadioShack would cease to exist as a stand-alone retailer.

“Sprint and RadioShack also have discussed co-branding the stores. … It’s also possible that another bidder could emerge that would buy RadioShack and keep it operating,” the report says

Sanpower Group, one of the China-based firms that brought gadget retailer Brookstone out of bankruptcy with the intent of operating it as a stand-alone brand, has expressed interest in RadioShack, too.

Read more: http://www.lehighvalleylive.com/breaking-news/index.ssf/2015/02/radioshack_on_brink_of_bankrup.html

Garfield Residents Plan Rally Over Bottom Dollar Site

Discount grocer Aldi is ignoring a community development group’s request for information on the future of one of the stores it is acquiring from a competitor, representatives of the group said.

The Bloomfield-Garfield Corp. plans to lead a rally Monday requesting that Aldi share its plan for the 6-month-old Bottom Dollar Food store at 5200 Penn Ave. in Garfield that will close by the end of the year.

“We want it to remain a grocery store so that our neighbors have access to food,” said Sarah Burke, communications and marketing manager for the Bloomfield-Garfield Corp.

In November, Belgium-based Delhaize Group announced that it planned to close its 66 Bottom Dollar Food stores, including the 20 in the Pittsburgh area, by the end of the year and sell the real estate and remaining lease liabilities for $15 million to Aldi Inc., which operates more than 1,300 stores in the United States.

Read more: http://triblive.com/news/allegheny/7413662-74/bottom-dollar-garfield#ixzz3MeRfMLhQ
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RRTA, Berks Transit Merger Complete

It is the state’s largest transit merger, and it is now official.

Lancaster County officials and Red Red Rose Transit Authority leaders took a little trip just over the Berks County line Thursday morning to meet with their Berks counterparts — and celebrate a transit consolidation nearly a year in the making.

They have established the new South Central Transit Authority to oversee both the Lancaster-area RRTA and the Berks Area Regional Transit Authority.

The RRTA name and logo on buses, as with BARTA in Berks, will not change, and the public may not notice much of a difference, transit official David Kilmer said Thursday, “We’re on a good track, and ready to move forward,” said Kilmer, who was named executive director of the new SCTA, which will oversee operations of both RRTA and BARTA.

Read more: http://lancasteronline.com/news/local/rrta-berks-transit-merger-complete/article_dc4c0840-817c-11e4-b535-1b031a28a372.html

5 Important Questions About BB&T’s Purchase Of Susquehanna Bancshares

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lancaster County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lancaster County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

As LancasterOnline reported Wednesday, Lititz-based Susquehanna Bancshares is being bought by North Carolina banking company BB&T.

So what does that mean if you’re a Susquehanna customer?

Here are five important questions and answers about the $2.5 billion deal.

Q: What happens to Susquehanna’s 245 banking offices in Pennsylvania, Maryland, New Jersey and West Virginia, including the 30 offices in Lancaster County?

A: All Susquehanna branches will be retained, although they will be renamed BB&T. No branches are being closed because the Susquehanna and BB&T branch networks do not overlap.

Read more: http://lancasteronline.com/news/local/important-questions-about-bb-t-s-purchase-of-susquehanna-bancshares/article_cb08e0b2-6b3d-11e4-9d29-bff9821ae372.html

Bottom Dollar Food Stores To Close By Year’s End And Be Sold To Aldi

The Belgium-based owner of Bottom Dollar Food stores plans to close its 66 store locations in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia markets and sell the assets to discount food competitor Aldi Inc. for about $15 million.

Aldi said the purchase is part of an expansion plan that will add 650 stores nationwide by the end of 2018.

Delhaize Group of Brussels said all stores are expected to remain open as Bottom Dollar Food stores until yearend. After that, banner will be retired. The sale of stores and leases to Aldi is expected to be completed by March 31.

Read more: http://triblive.com/business/headlines/7104718-74/aldi-stores-bottom#ixzz3ILGhsZ8R
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Lancaster General Health Looking At Joining U. Penn Health System

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lancaster County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lancaster County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Lancaster General Health, the organization that serves about three-fourths of Lancaster County’s health care market, is looking at becoming part of the University of Pennsylvania Health System.

LG Health and the Penn system, UPHS, have signed a memorandum of understanding to explore “a consolidated relationship,” the two organizations said Tuesday.

If those explorations bear fruit, LG Health would combine with UPHS, becoming a member organization, LG Health CEO Tom Beeman told LNP.

He called Penn a “world-class strategic partner” that shares LG Health’s values and has complementary strengths.

Read more: http://lancasteronline.com/news/local/lancaster-general-health-looking-at-joining-u-penn-health-system/article_cf339d20-5ecd-11e4-bd68-0017a43b2370.html

Frontier Airlines To Return To Philadelphia

English: Frontier Airlines N929FR at FLL.

English: Frontier Airlines N929FR at FLL. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Frontier Airlines – with new owners, a new management team, and a new logo on its planes – is coming to Philadelphia with flights to seven cities.

Denver’s hometown airline will announce Tuesday nonstop flights from Philadelphia International Airport to Miami, Orlando, and Tampa, Fla., and Cancun, Mexico, in December, and to Atlanta, Charlotte, N.C., and Chicago next spring.

“These are underserved markets with very high fares,” Frontier chief executive officer David Siegel said. “We’re going to expand the market, stimulating it with low fares and dropping in a little bit of capacity.”

Frontier hasn’t flown scheduled service from Philadelphia since January 2013, soon after it began flights from Trenton-Mercer Airport.

Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/business/20140930_JETTING_BACK_IN.html#sifzAxdbfOBcouvv.99

Coming Soon (Again) To The Big Board: Sunoco

English: Sunoco Logo

English: Sunoco Logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Sunoco’s storied name, absent from the New York Stock Exchange since the Philadelphia company was acquired by a Dallas energy firm in 2012, will return to the Big Board this year.

Energy Transfer Partners L.P. (ETP), a Dallas pipeline company that became Sunoco Inc.’s parent company two years ago, announced Thursday night that it will give its recently acquired Texas convenience-store company, Susser Petroleum Partners, a new name that is kind of an old one – Sunoco L.P.

The new Sunoco L.P., which will trade under the ticker symbol SUN, will eventually become the corporate umbrella for ETP’s growing portfolio of fuel stations and convenience stores, including Sunoco Inc. ETP had said it intended to drop its retail assets into the Susser partnership when it announced the $1.8 billion acquisition in April.

Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/business/20140927_Coming_soon__again__to_the_Big_Board__Sunoco.html#D5YWhWdiMwxH7yS5.99

Mon Valley Transit Merger Decision Might Come Next Month

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Washington County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Washington County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The future of transit services in the Mon Valley and throughout Washington County likely will be decided in the next month.

The Middle Monongahela Transit Authority provides services for 21 Valley municipalities. It has been studying a possible merger with Washington County Transportation – also known as Washington County Rides – and the City of Washington Transit Authority.

The MMVTA board will discuss a possible merger in a closed-door meeting this week.

By the end of September, each transit agency is expected to vote on consolidation. The MMVTA board could vote either at its Aug. 28 or Sept. 25 public meetings.

Read more: http://triblive.com/neighborhoods/yourmonvalley/yourmonvalleymore/6623980-74/transit-board-valley#ixzz3AlflikFi
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PPL Announces Merger

PPL Corporation, which owns the Susquehanna Steam nuclear power plant in Salem Township, is merging its electric generation business with that of another company to form a new stand-alone, independent power producer.

PPL Corporation and energy investment firm Riverstone Holdings LLC are combining and spinning off their power generation operations to form the separate company, Talen Energy Corporation, which will be publicly traded. PPL Corporation won’t have any ownership interest in the new company, but its shareholders will own 65 percent of it and Riverstone’s will own 35 percent, according to a press release issued Tuesday.

Read more: http://citizensvoice.com/news/ppl-announces-merger-1.1700744

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Acme Parent Company Buys Safeway for $9 Billion

Acme Markets’ corporate parent, the Albertsons grocery-store chain, on Thursday purchased Safeway Inc., for about $9 billion.

Albertsons is controlled by an investor group led by Cerberus, a New York-based private-equity firm. Other investors included Philadelphia-based Lubert-Adler Partners, Kimco Realty Corp., Klaff Realty L.P., and Schottenstein Real Estate Group.

With the purchase of Safeway, the group will now control about 2,400 grocery stores, making it one of the largest chains in the country.

Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/business/20140307_Acme_parent_company_buys_Albertsons_for__9B.html#yfZ07Jksrr6jsbWd.99

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Layoffs At Aetna

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

An undisclosed number of Aetna Inc. employees, including case managers, received layoff notices Wednesday at the health insurer’s Blue Bell office. One employee said that seven out of 18 supervisors lost their jobs, and each supervisor oversaw a staff of 15 to 20.

Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/business/20140227_Layoffs_at_Aetna.html#CJofKpH9CJpMxLSP.99

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Sharon Regional Hospital Agrees To For-Profit Buyout

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Mercer County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Mercer County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Editor’s note:  Gobble, gobble, gobble….CHS is at it again.

A Mercer County health system will be sold to a for-profit Tennessee conglomerate that owns, leases or operates 206 other hospitals in 29 states, according to an agreement announced Thursday.

Sharon Regional Health System said it has reached a definitive agreement to be sold to Franklin, Tenn.-based Community Health Systems Inc.

The sales price was not released, but hospital officials said in a news release that Community Health will invest at least $75 million in the hospital in the next five years.

Sharon Regional has about 1,800 workers making it the largest employer in Mercer County, which borders Ohio along Interstate 80. Sharon Regional’s flagship hospital is about 60 miles northwest of Pittsburgh.

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/local/north/2014/02/06/Sharon-Regional-Hospital-agrees-to-for-profit-buyout/stories/201402060266

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Comcast Could Buy Time Warner N.Y. Cable Franchises

Logo of Comcast Latina: Insigne Comcast

Logo of Comcast Latina: Insigne Comcast (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Comcast Corp. could acquire Time Warner Cable Co.’s New York cable-TV properties, along with other franchises on the East Coast, in a deal with Charter Communications Inc., according to sources in the industry.

A deal would expand Comcast’s market power along the I-95 corridor between Boston and Washington.

Comcast, the nation’s largest cable-TV company, already offers cable and Internet in Boston, Philadelphia and Washington.

Charter declined to comment Monday. Comcast also had no comment.

Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/business/20140128_Industry_sources__Comcast_could_acquire_Time_Warner_Cable_N_Y__franchises.html#HAyimeAaYY2LBdix.99

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US Airways To Close Moon Flight Operations Center, Affecting 600 Jobs

Map of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, United ...

Map of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, United States with township and municipal boundaries (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Built less than six years ago, a state-of-the-art flight operations control center in Moon will be closing and the work transferred to Texas, a casualty in the American Airlines-US Airways merger.

American Airlines announced Friday that it intends to consolidate flight operations in Dallas-Fort Worth over the next 18 months, costing the region a facility built specifically for the needs of US Airways and the 600 jobs that go with it.

“It’s pretty sad for the people that have been here for a long time,” said Danny Persuit, president of Transport Workers Union Local 545, which represents 164 employees at the center.

In a separate action, American also plans to transfer 53 mechanics out of Pittsburgh in what it said was an annual maintenance “rebalancing” unrelated to the merger.

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/local/region/2014/01/24/US-Airways-to-close-Moon-flight-operations-center/stories/201401240148#ixzz2rQyL9pLw

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Comcast Wants To Be Your One And Only Cable Provider

English: Comcast Tower, tallest building in Ph...

English: Comcast Tower, tallest building in Philadelphia (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

NEW YORK (TheStreet) — America’s largest pay-TV operator wants to be your one and only and it’s willing to absorb the second-largest to do so.

Citing sources, Reuters reports Comcast Corp  is weighing up a potential full takeover bid for Time Warner Cable , an acquisition which would create an industry behemoth.

A full takeover is but one of three potential scenarios in consideration. The Philadelphia-based broadcasting giant is also determining whether to partner with an additional cable company to take over Time Warner or, in a less aggressive move, whether to simply pick and choose certain Time Warner Cable markets.

Time Warner Cable has been the subject of many takeover rumors of late and the latest puts a rumored offer from Charter Communications  in jeopardy. Last week, Bloomberg reported the fourth-largest cable provider was preparing its own bid for Time Warner Cable and was seeking as much as $25 billion in loans to do so. Time Warner Cable is significantly larger than the Stamford, Conn.-based business, with a market share of $37.9 billion dwarfing Charter’s $13 billion.

Read more: http://business-news.thestreet.com/philly/story/comcast-wants-to-be-your-one-and-only-cable-provider/12157503

Done Deal: US Airways, American Complete Merger

An American Airlines Boeing 757-223 landing at...

An American Airlines Boeing 757-223 landing at Vancouver International Airport (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Finally, it’s a done deal.

American Airlines AMR Corp. and US Airways Group Monday officially announced the completion of their merger to form American Airlines Group Inc., the world’s largest airline.

At 7:40 a.m., the secretary of state in Delaware, Jeffrey Bullock, filed a certificate of merger. The new company is incorporated in Delaware.

US Airways CEO Doug Parker, who will lead the new American, will ring the opening bell on the Nasdaq stock market at 9:30 a.m. eastern time, signifying the the opening of trading of the new American’s shares on Nasdaq. Ticker: AAL.

Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/business/transportation/20131210_Done_deal__US_Airways__American_complete_merger.html#gH05iJPAtZ6qemow.99

Phoenixville Hospital Furloughs Come On Heels Of $4B Acquisition Deal

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Chester County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Chester County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Editor’s note:  Thanks for going there, Evan!  I was complaining about this very thing today.  They have billions to spend on buying more hospitals but then turn around and cut jobs.  Makes no sense to me!  You would think the time to buy would be if you were flush with cash.  Now they will own two hospitals in Lancaster once this deal goes through as well.

PHOENIXVILLE — One day after Pottstown Memorial Medical Center furloughed 30 employees for 90 days, The Mercury has confirmed that similar furloughs occurred at Phoenixville Hospital.

Phoenixville Hospital spokesperson Lori Cunningham confirmed Thursday that the full-time equivalent of 24 employees in “clinical, non-clinical support and administrative departments” have been furloughed.

News of the staff reduction occurs at the same time that the company that owns both hospitals, Tennessee-based Community Health Systems Inc., is planning a $3.9 billion purchase of Florida-based Health Management Associates Inc., which also operates hospitals around the country.

Cunningham said the furloughs at Phoenixville, which she described as “not scheduling a small number of employees in various departments,” have “no definitive time line.  As always, staffing is dependent upon patient volume and clinical needs.”

Read more:   http://www.pottsmerc.com/article/20130731/NEWS01/130739803/phoenixville-hospital-furloughs-come-on-heels-of-4b-acquisition-deal#full_story